The Prime Minister’s Office goes shopping. He will spend a million zlotys on gadgets bearing the logo of the Prime Minister’s Office, including a pile of electronic waste. Thousands of power banks, cables, headphones and speakers. Everything is of low quality, but at least with the branding of the premiere.
Rzeczpospolita reports in its Friday edition on the tender announced by Mateusz Morawiecki’s cabinet. It includes a whopping 77 types of gadgets, and many of them are typical products that can be found in offices or that we expect to receive from a politician during a pre-election tour of Poland – pens, mugs, notebooks, etc.
The problem is that the Prime Minister’s Office will also buy a lot of junk gadgets, such as pedometers, weather stations, wireless chargers, cables, power banks and earphones. We have reached the specifications of the units ordered. What gadgets will Prime Minister Morawiecki distribute?
Morawiecki’s gadgets. What is the Prime Minister’s Office buying?
The tender announced by the Prime Minister’s Office will start on November 3, 2022. Bids can be submitted until December 26, 2022, and the total value of the tender is PLN 813,008.13 net, that is, almost PLN 1 million including VAT.
For the sake of clarity, the large scale of the order and its quantity are not grounds for outrage. This is a fairly standard purchase of gadgets used in offices, and frankly crapwhich are distributed at election meetings for the benefit of the public. Each of the 77 items listed in the tender must be delivered to the Prime Minister’s Office with a label or printed logo of the Prime Minister’s Office.
The offer does not define the specifications of each of the products precisely and only provides general guidelines. Add to this that the tenders are won by the company that offers a better price, and it can be assumed that the products ordered will be like from a Chinese market.
This is not a big problem when it comes to products that are either easy to recycle or those that, regardless of the manufacturer, are quite durable (such as thermos mugs or porcelain cups). The problem arises when the Prime Minister’s Office orders a pile of electrical waste. Poor quality products in thousands of copies.
What electronic gadgets can we find on the order list? There are, among other things, 1,200 Qi charging stands, 300 weather stations, 600 pedometers, 800 charging cables with different tips, 1,700 power banks (aluminium, wood and bamboo), 1,400 tiny Bluetooth speakers, 3,700 pen drives of various types and 2,0020 sports headphones: , 300 headphones (with WiFi connection, which is probably a mistake in the list) and 1600 True Wireless headphones.
All earphones must have a frequency response of 20 – 20,000 Hz, which in itself suggests that they will not be products from any sensible shelf. The same is the case with the speakers, which are tiny cylinders or cubes that provide poor sound quality. You can see that this is typical of an apology crap gadgetswhich will be provided by a Chinese bush company, but which will be nice to hand out to voters and employees.
The Prime Minister buys a pile of electrical waste. And he should lead by example
Every year our civilization consumed by consumerism generates 50 million tons of e-waste. In terms of scale, it is more than the combined mass of all aircraft ever produced. According to the latest reports, only 20 per cent electronic waste is recycled worldwide, and 35 per cent disposed of correctly within the EU.
- Also read: I look at how much e-waste goes into the trash and I say: electronics are too cheap
The problem of e-waste is not only a question of the nomen-omen of waste, but also a waste of valuable resources, of which Planet Earth has less and less in nature. An excellent testimony to this waste was the Olympic medals at the 2020 Tokyo Games, which were made from metals obtained from the recycling of electronics. It took almost 80 tons (!) of electronics to recover 32 kg of gold, 3,500 kg of silver and 2,200 kg of bronze.
While reputable manufacturers are legally obliged to achieve climate neutrality, so every year they try more and more to close the chain and recover as much equipment as possible for recycling, the shops (especially so-called “Chinese supermarkets”) are still flooded with products from e.g. . so low quality that they can be thrown away shortly after purchase.
And unfortunately, these types of products are usually bought by companies and institutions when they want to acquire gadgets with their own logo. This is an incredible waste and unnecessary generation of e-waste that we should try to put an end to by 2022.
Because let’s face it. No one, absolutely no one, needs a flash drive with the logo of the Prime Minister’s Office or any other company. I myself have at least 30 different USB sticks at home accumulated over several years of business trips and I have no idea what to do with them because half of them don’t work and the other half are useless.
The role of public institutions is to lead by example. In an age of fighting climate change, the overriding message should be concern for the welfare of the planet and limiting both unnecessary consumption and the production of junk products.
Unfortunately, as you can see, power banks and headphones with their own logo are still more important to the authorities of our country than showing citizens that buying waste electronics contributes to deepening the climate crisis. Not to mention the fact that in the time of the economic crisis, this money could really be put to better use.
Morawiecki will buy a pile of e-waste and distribute it to voters. The Prime Minister’s office is like a Chinese bazaar