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Circular Drive Initiative Launches to Reduce E-Waste

Circular Drive Initiative Launches to Reduce E-Waste

The Circular Drive Initiative (CDI), a collaboration between global leaders in digital storage, sustainability, and blockchain announced on 3 November the official incorporation of the organization, adding Micron to the roster of founding members, and beginning the submission process for 501(c)(6) status ( a US law providing tax exemptions to business leagues). The CDI seeks to reduce e-waste by promoting and enabling the secure reuse of storage hardware. As an initial demonstration of its efforts, the CDI published a white paper providing research into circularity through data sanitization efforts.

This coordinated and broadly supported effort, beginning with industry leaders, is a critical first step in the implementation of necessary philosophical and process changes to reduce the impact of electronic waste on the climate. The CDI ensures industry alignment across stakeholders in storage technology, with membership including leading data storage providers, such as Seagate Technology, Western Digital, Micron, and organizations creating use cases for storage hardware, like Chia Network.

"I love the idea that these storage drives can be repurposed, with new data, wisdom, intelligence, and cleverness to better the human condition. These renewed drives will help us remember the future,” said William McDonough, Chief Executive of McDonough Innovation. “Storage reuse effectively demonstrates the Cradle to Cradle Circular Technosphere concept and I believe it can be a leading example in the ICT industry."

Through a partnership with the Open Compute Project (OCP), the CDI co-authored a white paper examining data sanitization and the adjustment of current methodologies to enable improved reuse and recycling of data storage devices. The storage market and industry are massive, with significant electronic hardware output, representing an incredible opportunity to create a sustainable and circular second-use economy. The latest technology in media sanitization demonstrates a practical solution to security, while enabling a circular economy for storage.

“Seagate’s value of Integrity compels us to take meaningful and measurable action on climate change, and on responsible minerals and metals consumption and production," said Joan Motsinger, CDI founding Board member and Seagate's sustainability and transformation senior vice president. "We are committed to building circularity into every drive we create. In addition, we are dedicated to minimizing our environmental impact through the reuse, recovery, and recycling of drives and drive components. Seagate is delighted to share in the collective responsibility to efficiently use the earth's finite resources."

Carbon and other greenhouse gas removal and mitigation is essential for our collective futures. As leaders in the industry, the founding members of the CDI are putting forth means to address these environmental challenges by increasing data storage sustainability. Data storage has become a major part of the technology infrastructure in the world as our lives have become digital, and continues to be one of the most rapidly growing areas of the tech industry. With official recognition and formalization as a 501(c)(6), the CDI is open to new members and encourages any organization in the storage technology space to consider joining the effort to build a more sustainable future.


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