Technology companies account for around 3-4% of the world’s carbon emissions, on par with the aviation industry. This information, combined with a recent Google Cloud survey in which 72% of the VP and C-Suite executives questioned, feared most organizations in their industry would be caught greenwashing if investigated thoroughly - illustrates a very real problem, and we have to do something today.
Instead of making another bold but hard to believe sustainability claim, however, we thought we’d try something different.
Here’s where we are, and what we’re doing:
The consumer electronics industry isn’t anywhere near transparent enough when it comes to sustainability. We want to change that.
We’re not perfect, but we think being upfront about the challenges tech companies face and how we’re tackling them is better than pretending we’ve got it all figured out.
If you want to skip straight to the data, here it is.
Most of our emissions stem from the manufacturing of components that go in our paper tablets. This is a tough one, because it's near impossible to build a modern device without them.
Below, you'll see a breakdown of the carbon footprint for each reMarkable 2.
Total product carbon footprint: 53 kg CO2e/unit
Emissions by category: production hotspots
We're working on a new way to build tech for thinking, changing the nature of individual components so we can keep innovating without damaging the environment.
Fortunately, you don't need a new reMarkable every year. Over 100 software updates have launched since 2018 with a long list of new features that keep improving our devices. We’re able to either repair, and or refurbish 97% of the paper tablets that come back to us, which greatly reduces e-waste.
The packaging reMarkable ships with is also 100% recyclable, as it should be. Nevertheless, we think there’s still plenty of room for improvement.
While reMarkable is designed in Norway, it’s our supply chain partners throughout the world who manufacture, test, and deliver devices into the hands of our customers.
It’s one thing to say we believe in treating people fairly, but we’d like to go a step further and talk more specifically about the social context of creating technology for better thinking.
We’re excited about confronting the challenges ahead. These are critical problems the technology industry needs to solve for the world to meet its climate goals.
Unfortunately, it’s all too easy to make bold statements, and ambitious sustainability promises, because they’re great at directing attention away from solving real problems and shifting the spotlight somewhere else.
So we’re holding fire for now, until we have more to share.
We’d love some input.
Your feedback can really help us develop how we talk about sustainability.