If your drawers at home are anything like mine you might just appreciate the EU’s vote last week on the non-binding Green Deal joint resolution.
Following a call to make “products more durable, repairable, reusable and recyclable”, the Commission has voted in favour of standardising device charging peripherals across member states. With such things generating an estimated 51,000 metric tons of e-waste per year, there is some sense to be had here.
On the other hand, device manufacturers have previously pointed out such moves to standardise may limit innovation and competition in the market. As we’ve seen over recent years, “standard” is an elusive concept in the world of tech. Back in 2011, the European Commission issued a voluntary decree that micro-USB would be the standard connector. However, this was rapidly replaced by Apple’s Lightning and others’ USB-C solutions. Even with wireless charging, rapid improvements in battery technology are likely to require periodic updates in charger base station.
Calls for legislative proposals on the /right to repair/ will likely be the device manufacturers’ bigger concern here though.
You can read the joint resolution here. Please save some trees and don't print it.
The European Parliament approved the European Green Deal, which involves developing “cleaner, greener ways” to run Europe’s economy while creating jobs.