[LINK] throw-away culture

Adam Todd link at todd.inoz.com
Mon Jan 22 10:00:58 AEDT 2007

I still have my Grandmothers Two Piece Toaster.  It doesn't pop up or turn 
off like modern toasters, but it still works and we often resort to it when 
the modern replaced every year or so toaster dies.

Strangely enough we have the same issue with the electric jug.  The Ceramic 
one with the curly heating element you replace for $2 every 10 years has 
long survived a dozen modern kettles.  I think it's faster too.

TV's are a problem, although most are at the end of their life presently 
and have had lives longer than 8 years.

It's LCD Panels and CRT Computer Monitors that are causing grief.  I see 
around 200 every council clean up and their numbers are increasing.  Many 
actually work fine.  I've had a habit of collecting the 17"+ ones and 
testing them, if they work I pick the best ones and replace all my dying 
ones.  I haven't had to buy a monitor in about 10 years. Average life of a 
CRT left on 24x7 is around 3-5 years.  The more modern ones with energy 
saver etc seem to survive about 3 years before they develop a fault more 
costly to repair than replace.

No, I'm all for long term use items.  The problem is manufacturers want to 
release a half baked item that will tease you into future 
upgrades.  Upgrades keep customers coming back and spending money, hence 
increasing profits.

Why make and sell something that does everything and lasts for years, when 
you can sell something that kinda does most things, can be upgraded and 
replaced for a cheap price and give you a tad more to want the next upgrade?

I'm a bit tired of it to be honest.

I also wish manufacturers of food products would wake up and realise that 
many a larger family requires larger product quantities.  2 litre bottles 
of juice last a day around here.  A 5 litre is the way to go.  However no 
one does this - not affordable.  (2 litres costs $1.89 at ALDI)

I guess the problem is with people being so mobile today and the training 
society has had in "Honey can you pick up a loaf of bread and a bottle of 
milk on your way home" attitude, we now live in a society of long hour 
supermarkets  where you can drop in any day of the week so why bulk buy and 
stock when you can drive and buy a handful?

At 07:15 AM 22/01/2007, Kim Holburn wrote:
>Very interesting article about designing for sustainable use.  I have
>said before on link that one answer to the land-fill problem is to
>put a disposal tax on things that need disposing.  It seems it's
>already happening and will increase.
>Designing things - appliances that last - needs a different economic
>approach - along the lines of a service rather than a product.
> From issue 2585 of New Scientist magazine, 04 January 2007, page 31-35
>Better by design: battling the throwaway culture (requires
>subscription to read on-line)
>>Americans use and throw away 2.5 million plastic bottles an hour.
>>The British produce enough garbage to fill the Albert Hall every 2
>>hours. According to the authors of Natural Capitalism, Paul Hawken,

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