Massachusetts Senators Elizabeth Warren and Edward J. Markey, along with Vermont’s Bernie Sanders, are pushing for a universal smartphone charging standard. He said in a letter sent Thursday to Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo.
In the letter, the lawmakers urge the commercial sector to develop a strategy to protect consumers and reduce e-waste, in line with the EU’s leadership in global shipping.
Warren wrote on Twitter: “Consumers don’t have to buy new chargers for different devices all the time. Materials can be cleaned to standardized standards – at lower cost, with less hassle and with less waste.”
Consumers don’t always have to buy new chargers for different devices. Products can be cleaned to quality standards – at low cost, with less hassle and less waste.https://t.co/rbxLleahIj
— Elizabeth Warren (@Warren) 7 July 2022
The senators argued that the global tonnage shortage creates a financial burden on consumers and creates more e-waste, “In addition to unnecessary costs to American consumers, the disposal and replacement of materials creates e-waste that damages the environment, including the spread of toxins into water, soil pollution and air quality pollution.” .And when not used alone, more than 11,000 tonnes of e-waste is generated annually.
Although the senator’s letter does not specify what these fixed fees should be, A recent EU decision made the USB Type-C cable a global standardWhile this cable covers most smartphones, tablets, headphones, earphones and portable speakers, it doesn’t cover the iPhone, which uses Apple’s proprietary Lightning connector for charging.
However, a new EU decision could force Apple to change that, according to a USA Today report.
“The consumer electronics industry cannot allow itself to prioritize proprietary and necessarily outdated charging technology over consumer safety and environmental health,” the letter states.
Time will tell if the Commerce Department will act on behalf of the senators’ request and if Apple will meet the EU’s dilemma and rescind their Lightning port.
“[The EU’s] The policy has the potential to significantly reduce e-waste and help consumers tired of sifting through junk drawers full of complicated charges to find a compatible one or buy a new one, the senators wrote. “The EU has acted. Smartly. In the public interest by taking on strong tech companies on consumer and environmental issues. The US should do the same.
Diego Ramos Pechara is a freelance writer at IGN who is a fan of all things Star Wars, Rockstar, Naughty Dog, and Batman.
You can follow him on Twitter @DRamosBechara.
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