EU Push Consumers' 'Right to Repair' Their Own Electronics
The E.U. Parliament has solid plans as it works towards granting E.U. consumers a "right to repair."
The hope is to minimize spending, encourage sustainability by promoting a culture of reuse, improve the lifespan of products, reduce electronic waste by having one common charger, amongst other needs, stated the E.U. parliament in a press release published yesterday.
Making repairs "more appealing, systematic, and cost-efficient," means the E.U. vote is trying to push for "extending guarantees, providing guarantees for replaced parts, or better access to information on repair and maintenance," as per the press release.
Earlier this year, the E.U. parliament already make its stance clear in that it desires a common charger for all smartphones and similar devices. The hope is to reduce electronic waste, which abounds, as well as help consumers spend less.
This new vote includes common chargers.
For a sustainable & green future, EU consumers must be able to benefit from the 'right-to-repair' from manufacturers - with easy access to spare parts & at a reasonable cost", says @ASPelletier in #EPlenary.— The Left in the European Parliament (@GUENGL) November 23, 2020
"We have an urgent need to change our consumption habits". pic.twitter.com/Gzenu6rY0M
The E.U. isn't standing alone, the U.S. is also pushing for its own consumers' "right to repair."
For instance, U.S. company, Repair.org, explains its viewpoint on the matter, "You bought it, you should own it. Period. You should have the right to use it, modify it, and repair it wherever, whenever, and however you want. We fight for your right to fix."
Repair.org makes the point that keeping repairs local means that locals can have more jobs, and there's less waste in the area.
That said, electronics manufacturers, such as Apple, aren't so happy to hear such news. Typically companies such as Apple require that their products be replaced or repaired through their own channels, making it hard for local companies to do so.
Thanks for messages to MEPs from all over Europe asking them to #EndObsolescence - the amendment vote is postponed to Tuesday, final vote Wed. More time to push @Europarl_EN to do the right thing! Let's keep the pressure up: https://t.co/j93zrCJHk3— Right to Repair Europe (@R2REurope) November 20, 2020
According to MacRumors, Apple was fighting the "right to repair" act put out last year in California. The company stated that consumers could hurt themselves while repairing their own devices, by accidentally rupturing lithium-ion batteries, for example.
Moreover, Develop3D reports that manufacturers cite intellectual property rights as an issue as it would mean they'd have to publish details of the inner workings of devices. Manufacturers also warn that using third party components could reduce the quality of the device.
Quite a few aspects to take into account, but the E.U. is forging ahead with its push for the "right to repair."