Thousands of tonnes of toxic e-waste is illegally dumped in vulnerable regions every year. A new addition to TCO Certified Edge will help solve the problem. By choosing to buy certified IT products, purchasers can make sure that an equivalent amount of e-waste is collected and recycled in a safe way.

E-waste is an enormous human health and environmental problem. When it’s not handled in a responsible manner, hazardous substances may be released into the environment and potentially end up in the food we eat and the water we drink.

TCO Development, the organization behind the global sustainability certification TCO Certified, now gives purchasing organizations the opportunity to take responsibility for the e-waste they generate. When they buy an IT product certified according to the TCO Certified Edge criterion, E-waste Compensated, an equivalent amount of e-waste is collected in a country lacking in safe recycling systems. The environment is protected from hazardous substances and, due to social requirements, fair job opportunities are created locally. The collected e-waste is then transported to a recycling plant compliant with strict environmental criteria.

“Through TCO Certified Edge, E-waste Compensated, we want to give purchasers and the IT industry a powerful tool for combatting e-waste,” says Andreas Rehn, Development Manager, at TCO Development.

Closing the Loop, a circular service provider, is the first approved collector within the framework of TCO Certified Edge, E-waste Compensated.

“E-waste is often seen as a problem, but it also represents opportunities for green procurement. Shifting e-waste to where it can be recycled in a responsible manner, can give those valuable resources a second life, keeping them in the loop of the circular economy,” says Joost de Kluijver, founder of Closing the Loop.

TCO Certified Edge is a supplemental certification to TCO Certified. The new criterion E-waste Compensated is launched on March 31. From this date, organizations can use the criterion in their IT procurement.