The second big obstacle in creating sustainable digital infrastructure aside from electricity consumption, are the machines needed to turn electricity into computation & memory. Evaluating the resource, environmental and social footprint of these machines is complex and will likely open another challenge for the digital sector: How to keep innovating & accelerating computing, network and storage performance while recycling & reusing 100% of all the components?
If we think about the manufacturing of hard-drives, chips or cabling and the processes & supply chains, we realize the vastness of the problem, the amount of labor, rare minerals and resources are injected into an ever growing mountain of IT equipment. At the same time electronic waste is rising.
In this steering group we drive research & communication on the topic of refurbishment, recycling and re-use (through the CEDaCI project) and evaluate high-level strategies on how to advance a Circular school-of-thought for the manufacturing of IT equipment.