Sustainable Technology vs Sustainable Technology Habits

When we think of what sustainable technology is, we often imagine large-scale operations such as wind farms, solar panel estates and electric transport. However, sustainable technology isn’t just about developing complex devices and systems designed to save the planet. 

Currently, there are more than 15 billion cell phones in circulation; in 2020, over 3 million server shipments were made; over 2 billion PCs are currently in use. With technology in these quantities circulated throughout our economy, it is clear that sustainable technology also needs to address the devices and hardware we use every day. In short, we must develop environmentally friendly technology habits to support the development of a sustainable future. 

What is Sustainable Technology?

Sustainable technology is any technological device, invention or structure designed to improve the environment and promote a liveable future. Wind turbines, solar panels and electric vehicles are good examples of sustainable technology that help us move towards a more environmentally friendly society.

However, sustainable technology can also be defined as using IT devices in the most environmentally friendly manner possible, encompassing how we make, use and dispose of hardware. In this sense, sustainable technology can also take the form of adopting more environmentally friendly IT habits.

What Are Sustainable Technology Habits?

Sustainable technology habits are any actions taken to prevent a negative social or environmental impact from technology. This can take the form of responsible IT disposal, extending the lifespan of your devices, increasing the efficiency of your technology, and purchasing refurbished wherever possible to stimulate a circular IT economy.  

Refurbishment and recycling are two sustainability habits that can make a difference towards creating an environmentally friendly future, particularly where technology is concerned. These are practices that we have heard plenty about, yet their impact is often drastically overlooked.  

However, one example of the impact that recycling and refurbishment can make is highlighted by Earth Overshoot Day. German circular business, Interzero, have been able to push back the global Earth Overshoot Day (the date on which we have used all resources that can be replenished in a year) by four minutes and 20 seconds. If one company practicing refurbishment and recycling can achieve this reduction in resources, how much can we all save by practicing the same habits?  

Techbuyer is a global specialist in refurbished IT equipment. By refurbishing devices and recycling used technology when no longer usable, we have diverted more than 4.4 million lbs of e-waste from landfill since 2019. This has ensured that IT hardware and valuable materials are kept in use for longer. Find out more about our impact in our sustainability report or browse our range of refurbished devices here to make a difference. Furthermore, you can find out more about selling your used IT equipment for refurbishment and extended use here.  

Other sustainable technology habits include increasing the efficiency of your devices through component level upgrades, repairing rather than replacing, and cascading used technology down through your organization. Even seemingly tiny changes like turning off your camera in video meetings or making sure you are connected to Wi-Fi when possible, instead of using mobile data.

How Can Adopting Sustainable Technology Habits Help the Planet? 

Sustainable technology habits can have a massive impact on our environment and ensuring that we have a liveable future for our planet.  

  • By reducing the amount of e-waste that you send to landfill, you are protecting our environment, nature and global communities from dangerous chemicals and harmful materials. Find out more about the Toxic Threat of E-waste here.  
  • Similarly, this habit allows valuable materials to remain in our economy, fuelling a circular economy and reducing the rate at which we mine and use virgin resources. Learn more about Critical Raw Materials here.  
  • By increasing the energy efficiency of devices, or even entire data centers, we are able to reduce the carbon footprint of the IT sector. Also, by choosing refurbished where possible, you are reducing the number of devices that need to be manufactured which is the most energy intensive process of IT hardware’s entire lifespan. 

Here at Techbuyer, sustainable technology habits are a driving force. We are dedicated to using technology more sustainably; our approach includes a zero-to-landfill policy for incoming hardware and using refurbished devices for employees. We have a dedicated repairs team whose focus is to repair rather than replace equipment for our customers. We also utilize e-waste specialists in house to help us dispose of electronics that cannot be repurposed in a sustainable manner. 

IT Repairs to Extend the Lifespan of Devices

The Importance of Sustainable Technology Habits 

Adopting sustainable technology habits can help to halt and reverse the damage caused by the current ‘take-make-waste’ model and will also promote a circular economy approach while saving considerable costs. That can only be a good thing.  

Sustainable practices are not simply about large corporations and governments using technology to reduce our impact on the planet; it is also about what we can do within our business and in our lives to decrease our environmental impact. Environmentally friendly technology, including the habits that we must all form around IT, will be at the centre of a sustainable long term future.  

Techbuyer has all the resources to help you develop sustainable technology habits. To find out more, get in touch with our experienced team or find out more about our sustainable IT solutions here. 

Techbuyer’s Sustainable IT Solutions 

Techbuyer actively adopts environmentally sustainable technology habits across the board. From adding electric vehicles to our fleet to offering refurbished and sustainable product use and, as our Sustainability Report 2022 reveals, we are making a significant difference – but we are always aiming for more. By 2025, we plan to divert 4,000,000 kg of technology from landfill, promote sustainable technology to 5,000 organizations and donate 1,500 ft of waste as a resource, to name but three ambitions.  

Helping our customers to protect the planet is what Techbuyer is all about. We have developed solutions designed to promote IT lifecycle thinking for businesses around the world, from procurement and maintenance to eventual disposal, Techbuyer is the only global supplier of the full IT lifecycle. At our core, we exist to reduce the environmental impact of IT hardware by promoting circularity of resources and improving energy efficiency. Find out more about our sustainability goals and progress so far here. 

Sustainable Technology Habits You can Adopt: 

  1. Sell used technology to refurbishment specialists to extend the lifespan of your devices. 
  2. Donate your used IT to charities who can refurbish hardware and deliver to those in need. 
  3. Extend your use of a device through component level upgrades that enhance performance and add years to your technology. 
  4. Dispose of your used hardware correctly, either through an ITAD or Sell to Us service that keeps the materials and devices in use. 
  5. Choose refurbished wherever possible. 
  6. Speak to a sustainable technology specialist who can advise on improving your systems performance, energy efficiency, and overall impact.