We believe that a sustainable future is essential. Even though we are in the early stages of small scale production, we are committed to making environmentally responsible choices. Our sustainability policy is based on the following principles:
Use of recycled or recyclable materials: We strive to use recyclable and recycled materials whenever possible. The majority of terraPen is aluminium which we understand to be infinitely recyclable (though not without an energy cost). The terraPen base board is Ekoply and is made from recycled plastics.
Avoiding plastics: We make an effort to minimize the use of plastics in our products and packaging.
Reuse - Repair - Recycle!
Encouraging reuse: Should you find you no longer have a use or need for your terraPen we encourage you to find a new home for your terraPen. Give/sell/donate to others who may find them useful. This helps to extend the life of our products and reduce waste.
Repairability: Most of the components are either open-source or readily available online. Where we use custom parts we will endeavour to keep a small stock of those parts available to keep your terraPen plotting.
Recyclability at End of Life: We design our products with recyclability in mind, aiming to make it easy for customers to recycle them when they reach the end of their useful life.
Future buy back, refurbish, and re-sell program: We hope to eventually offer a program that allows customers to return their used machines to us so we can refurbish and re-sell or donate these machines to educational institutions, promoting a circular economy and reducing waste.
Continuous Improvement: We are only human and we don't expect to get everything right on the first try. But we always come back to the question, "What impact are we having?" and that makes us look for ways to do better where we can. As our company grows and develops, we will continue to review and update our policies to better reflect our belief that sustainability is a necessity.
Transparency: We believe in the power of open-source and our designs should be freely available so others can build upon and improve. Too often we see companies produce a product only to stop supporting it for various reason, leaving perfectly serviceable products unusable and ultimately destined for landfill and while we can't predict the future, we want to ensure that terraPen does not have built in obsolescence.
Mechanical designs are still pending, but electronics and firmware is available on github.com/theworkisthework
By implementing these principles, we hope to limit our impact on our environment.