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CPSR Computers and Environment Work Group
Working Groups
Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility

CPSR Computers and Environment Work Group

Resources on Computers and the Environment

Computer Recycling | Environmental Impacts | Green Design | Responsible Practices

See also: Group Home Page | Group Strategy and Interests

Computer Recycling:

Computer Recycling Research. A widely cited 1991 study predicted that nearly 150 million personal computers (PCs) would be sent to landfills by 2005. This study, produced at Carnegie Mellon University, takes into consideration newer end-of-life disposition options now available, and reconsiders the general premise of the original study.

EPA Resource Conservation Challenge is a major national effort to find flexible, yet more protective ways to conserve our valuable resources through waste reduction and energy recovery activities that will improve public health and the environment.

Ten Tips for Donating a Computer. How to donate your old PC.

Computer Reuse and Recycling FAQ. A good reference on hardware recycling from

Hardware Recycling Information. A page with links to resources on finding used hardware, recycling, and articles from

The World Computer Exchange provides disadvantaged youth with access to computers and the Internet. We collect working computers which are too often discarded and place them with educational organisations in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. We are currently working with 30 partner organisations and 68 potential partners in 36 countries who have signed-up 700 schools and centres with 300,000 youth.

Environmental Impacts:

Social and environmental impacts of ebanking: case study with Barclays PLC. A case study on e-banking by Digital Europe available for download. 1.5 M.

eBusiness and the Environment. A discussion paper on the environmental impacts of BT's e-business activities prepared by SustainIT for its 2001 Environmental Report. 107KB.

Survey of IT Purchasing. A survey of corporate purchasers undertaken by SustainIT and the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply has shown that they are in the dark about the environmental impacts associated with computer products.

The Chemical Scorecard can help you to find out what chemicals are being released into your neighborhood environment by manufacturing plants, which of these chemicals are potentially the most harmful, and what companies are responsible. Use our maps to see how close these polluting facilities are to your home, your workplace, or your children's schools. Published by the Environmental Defense Fund.

Silicon Valley Toxics Coalition. SVTC is a diverse grassroots coalition that engages in research, advocacy, and organizing around the environmental and human health problems caused by the rapid growth of the high-tech electronics industry. Resources on the site include the San Francisco Bay Area Computer Recycling & Reuse Directory and Maps, Toxic Hotspots interactive maps, news, case studies and other publications.

The Right To Know Network. Provides free access to numerous databases, text files, and conferences on the environment, housing, and sustainable development. With the information available on RTK NET, you can identify specific factories and their environmental effects; analyze reinvestment by banks in their communities; and assess people and communities affected.

Life Cycle Assessment Links. Life Cycle Assessment is an objective process to evaluate the environmental burdens associated with a product, process, or activity by identifying energy and materials used and wastes released to the environment, and to evaluate and implement opportunities to affect environmental improvements. This collection of links is slightly outdated but still useful.

Green Design and IT:

Business EcoDesign Tools. Download this 8-page guide with practical steps for more ecologically friendly design. Includes an example case. Size 1.1MB.

Virtual dematerialisation - ebusiness and factor X. A report from the Wuppertal Institute for the dematerialization study of the Digital Europe initiative. Both summary and full report available for download.

Green Design Institute. The Green Design Institute is an interdisciplinary research effort to make an impact on environmental quality through green design. The central idea of the institute is to form partnerships with companies, government agencies and foundations to develop pioneering design, management, manufacturing, and regulatory processes that can improve environmental quality and product quality while enhancing economic development.

Responsible Practices:

CERES is a non-profit coalition of investors, public pension funds, foundations, labor unions, and environmental, religious, and public-interest groups, working in cooperation with companies toward the common goal of corporate environmental responsibility worldwide.

Exploring sustainability in the Information Economy. A business workshop of the Global e-Sustainability Initiative that offered an opportunity for CSR and Sustainability experts from the ICT industry to consider the emerging sustainability challenges for the sector. Includes presentations and documents for download.

Making the Net Work: sustainable development in a digital society. The book shows how the growth in networks and the increased availability of information is affecting our lives and our environment. It argues that in both the public and private sectors need to recognize the greater complexity of a wired world in order to find the solutions that will produce a more sustainable and harmonious one. Introduction and chapter available for download from Digital Europe; also see the summary report.

Social responsibility in the information society. A report by Forum for the Future published in 2003. Both a full report and summary available for download.

ResponsibleIT Standard. ResponsibleIT is a set of guidelines to help combine the performance and efficiency benefits of technology with socially responsible and environmentally sustainable practices. ifPeople has built the Guidelines for ResponsibleIT on best practices, industry research, and the extension of social responsibility to business processes that often fail to incorporate such practices. Available for download.

Green Seal. An NGO that works with manufacturers, industry sectors, purchasing groups, and governments at all levels to "green" the production and purchasing chain. Among the tools Green Seal uses are product certification; purchasing guidance, including product recommendations; special projects and evaluations of products and purchasing; and policy recommendations.

Archived CPSR Information
Created before October 2004

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Why did you join CPSR?

I feel I must do something to justify being in this field