Computer users want greener machines

By Derek Sooman on
Are you concerned about the damage to the environment that is being caused by the production process that brought your PC to you? If so, then you are not alone. A recent study by Ipsos-Mori for Greenpeace has found that consumers are willing to pay up to an extra 108 for a machine that contains fewer chemicals and is more environmentally friendly.

Electronic waste, or e-waste, is a massive problem affecting the entire world. Thirty million computers are thrown out every year just in the US, and about 70% of heavy metals in waste, such as lead and mercury, come from electronic waste. It is a problem that appears to not be lost on computer users, who are more than willing it seems to buy greener machines, even if they cost more. The study, conducted in nine nations, found for example that UK computer users were willing to pay an extra 64 ($117) and that Chinese users were willing to spend up to 108 ($197) for a greener machine.

Simultaneously, PC maker Dell has announced that it is to be eliminating key hazardous chemicals from the personal computers, laptops and other products it makes. They plan to eliminate the use of all brominated flame retardants (BFRs) and polyvinyl chloride (PVC) in their products by 2009.

"Dell's decision to remove these harmful chemicals reflects a move within the electronics industry in the right direction to become cleaner." - Greenpeace International spokeswoman Zeina al-Hajj.

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