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World class computing and information science research at Strathclyde...

The Strathprints institutional repository is a digital archive of University of Strathclyde's Open Access research outputs. Strathprints provides access to thousands of Open Access research papers by University of Strathclyde researchers, including by researchers from the Department of Computer & Information Sciences involved in mathematically structured programming, similarity and metric search, computer security, software systems, combinatronics and digital health.

The Department also includes the iSchool Research Group, which performs leading research into socio-technical phenomena and topics such as information retrieval and information seeking behaviour.

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Reducing end-of-life waste: repair, recondition, remanufacture or recycle?

King, A. and Ijomah, W.L. and McMahon, C.A. (2004) Reducing end-of-life waste: repair, recondition, remanufacture or recycle? In: Proceedings of the ASME Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference, September 28-October 2, 2004, Salt Lake City, Utah [CD-ROM]. American Society of Mechanical Engineers. ISBN 0791837424

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Abstract

Between 1980 and 1997, municipal waste in OECD countries increased by around 40%. This paper outlines the very real negative effects of this increase and then introduces the two main European Union policies that have been established to address this problem: a landfill directive and legislation on extended producer responsibility (E P R). The paper then describes and compares the four alternative strategies to reducing end-of-life waste within the context of extended producer responsibility: namely repairing, reconditioning, remanufacturing or recycling. It also introduces a more robust definition of remanufacturing, validated by earlier research, which differentiates it from repair and reconditioning. From a consideration of the different factors involved, it concludes that remanufacturing may well be the best strategy. This is because it enables the embodied energy of virgin production to be maintained, preserves the intrinsic 'added value' of the product for the manufacturer and enables the resultant products to be sold 'as new' with updated features if necessary.