Report highlights cost- and waste-saving potential of right to repair

How can consumers save money and reduce toxic e-waste at the same time? A new MASSPIRG report gives a simple answer: right to repair.

The July 27 report, “What Bay Staters are Fixing,” details the millions of pounds of avoidable electronic waste that Massachusetts produces and examines the obstacles people face to repairing their electronics, most notably manufacturer restrictions on repair. The average American family disposes of around 176 pounds of electronic waste per year — and each replacement cell phone requires over 165 pounds of raw materials.

But our report shows that Bay Staters would fix their devices more and keep them in use for longer if they had the tools to do so. In 2020, iFixit.com, the “repair guide for everything written by everyone,” had over 2 million Massachusetts visitors learning how to repair their technology.

“Because of barriers to repair, we waste a staggering amount of materials and money, which can be devastating for both our planet and our family finances,” said MASSPIRG Executive Director Janet Domenitz. "That's why MASSPIRG is supporting legislation in the State House to establish a digital right to repair and push this crucial issue forward in our state."

Read more.

Learn more about our Right to Repair campaign.

Photo: In total, American families could save $40 billion every year if we repaired more of our electronics — either ourselves or through our local repair shops — instead of replacing them. But that can only happen if we have the right to repair. Credit: Prostock Studio via Shutterstock