Driven to reach Sustainability and Circular economy goals, Europe wants to lead the change. The EU Ecodesign Directive is one of the EU tools; aimed at setting mandatory minimum requirements for individual product groups. For new Servers and Storage, ENTR Lot 9, this has now been published and will become effectively in March 2020. Free ICT Europe participated in this process.
Policy changing elements have been added to stimulate Repair/maintenance, reuse/resell and recycling and to increase the life-cycle of systems. These new measures come on top of a barrier for max. energy consumption, which has historically been the primary objective of the Ecodesign Directive.
The EU sets the direction by addressing a few new elements, part of the so called Material Aspects:
A large discussion took place about the energy requirements, as the initial setup focussed solely on Idle state power consumption and would have led that only 25% of the current new systems would comply. The final requirements now involve also the active state power consumption as well.
“We see this legislation as a step in the right direction and are proud that the European Commission made the decision to address new elements in legislation that will give more freedom to end-users and will have a positive effect on the businesses that provide repair, maintenance and ICT resellers.”
A number of missed opportunities can be addresses though. Firstly, the scope of the directive; at first it would include Networking Equipment, next to that the systems are only mainstream: the whole setup is a puzzle, though roughly said Servers up to 4 CPU sockets and Storage up to max capacity of 400 disks. We pledge to extend this at least to apply the material aspects to all. Good news is that this discussion is already planned for the review.
Severe discussion took place about firmware updates. Free ICT sees this primarily as fixes that are required for the system to operate as it should, therefor should be free of charge.
The directive does not include a number of topics that are important for reuse and repair/maintenance: access to full diagnostics, clear rules for license transfer, no statement addressing the import restrictions of Used systems (no open Circular Economy), maintenance reinstatement fees, spare parts availability in a timely manner, license programs and a compatibility grid to stimulate upgrading. Still work to do for the review!
Next to Servers & Storage, the new Ecodesign package will improve five other products: lighting, fridges, TV screens, dishwashers and washing machines.
“An interesting development that also can be seen here is that Resource Efficiency is becoming probably the most important element. How are products designed, made repairable and upgradeable to last longer will surpass energy consumption?”
The Lot 3, PC/Laptop/Tablet review will be (re-)started. A product group for Smartphones is planned; a strong call has been made by parliament to start with this. Next to Free ICT Europe, also several organisation and countries asked for a product group for Networking Equipment.
When you are interested in the work done by FIE, want to join the alliance or stay up to date, please visit our website (to be renewed soon).
Are you an ICT Secondary Market provider?
Then please join our alliance, as we need your help to raise our voice.
FIE has become a serious partner in Brussels, please join the alliance, so that we can continue to expand our reach and gain more attention representing businesses like yours.Join
As a Foundation we are depending on the gifts we receive. Please consider to support us financially, your contribution is appreciated & needed!
Thank you in advance,
Subscribe to our newsletter so that we can share more about our activities and the issues our industry is facing. We also encourage other companies to share their story.Subscribe