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HP bets big on sustainability; recycles 1.2-lakh tonne hardware in 2020

Nidhi Singal     June 10, 2021

Committed to creating positive and lasting changes towards reducing global warming and plastic-free commitment, the American information technology company HP is doing it all -- from sourcing plastic to be recycled to eliminating paper-based packaging to collecting e-waste. HP has recycled 118,000 tonnes of hardware and supplies in 2020. This includes 106,000 tonnes of hardware, 10,600 tonnes of Original HP and Samsung Toner Cartridges, and 1,300 tonnes of Original HP Ink Cartridges.

"We adhere to sustainable design principles and are shifting toward circular, service-based business models. We are keeping materials in use, increasing renewable and recycled content, and advancing materials and energy efficiency while continuing to offer and expand robust repair, reuse, and recycling programs. We aim to develop products and solutions that keep materials in use at their highest state of value for the longest possible time, grow the market for recycled content, invest in recycling infrastructure, and offer robust repair, reuse, and recycling programs," says Ketan Patel, MD, HP India Market.

To date, HP  has also sourced more than 1.7 million pounds (771 tonnes) of ocean-bound plastic for use in its supplies and hardware. HP has used 27,490 tonnes of post-consumer recycled content plastic in HP personal systems and print products, 11 per cent of the total plastic used in 2020.

Currently, HP's portfolio includes over 50 personal system products using ocean bound plastic. For instance, the HP Elite Dragonfly was the world's first notebook with ocean bound plastics. Its speaker enclosure components are made with 5 per cent ocean bound plastic. With years passing by, the use of recycled material has increased. In the HP Probook series, over 62 per cent of mechanical parts are made from recycled metal and plastic. The speaker enclosure is made from 50 per cent recycled material, the keyboard keycaps are made from 50 per cent recycled DVDs and the keyboard deck and bottom chassis are made using 90% recycled magnesium.

As a part of its sustainable packaging strategy, HP has been trying to eliminate unnecessary packaging material, space, and hard-to-recycle materials. To lower environmental impact, HP has been using material such as sustainable fiber and recycled plastics. It is also reducing paper and cardboard use and replacing expanded polystyrene packing cushions -- the white foam that protects PCs, laptops, and printers in transit -- with recyclable molded paper pulp, among other changes.

"Our goal is to eliminate 75 per cent of single-use plastic packaging by 2025, compared to 2018. We have achieved zero deforestation for 99 per cent of HP brand paper and paper-based product packaging, with the remaining 1 per cent assessed to ensure reported fiber usage meets HP's Sustainable Paper and Wood Policy. Of the 942,000 tonnes of materials used in HP's products and packaging, 34,200 tonnes of recycled content plastic has been used," adds Patel.

HP has also engaged Central Pollution Control Board authorised Producer Responsibility Organisations (PRO) to comply with producer responsibility requirements.  HP's e-waste policies and practices offer take-back programme -- HP Planet Partners Programme -- that allows the customers to return their end-of-life HP equipment and supplies.

"When HP products reach their shelf life, our robust product repair, reuse, and recycling programs help to ensure that products and materials are repurposed, to keep materials at their highest value state for the longest possible time. These efforts are part of our wider ambitions to transform the business toward an ever more materials-efficient circular model," explains Patel.

In India, as part of Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) under the E-waste Management Rules 2016, HP has established a collection take back mechanism for its IT products; and is channelising the same through e-waste management partners for ethical recycling. HP has also set up mechanisms for its consumer and Small and Medium Business (SMB) customers to drop-off their empty original HP ink and toner cartridges at the nearest E-waste Collection Centre operated by our e-waste management partners.

By 2025, HP's goal is to reach carbon neutrality and zero waste in its operations and 100 per cent renewable electricity in global operations. "We pledge to reach 75 per cent circularity for products and packaging by 2030. We aim to achieve carbon neutrality with Supplies business; reduce HP absolute value chain GHG emissions 50 per cent and maintain zero deforestation for HP paper and paper-based packaging by 2030. We plan to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions across the HP value chain by 2040, with a 50 per cent reduction by the end of this decade," adds Patel.

HP is committed to maintaining zero deforestation for HP paper and paper-based packaging and counteracting deforestation for non-HP paper used in our products and print services.

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