Analyst Gartner has warned that legislation designed to limit the environmental effects caused by computer parts could have detrimental consequences to international supply chains, unless the companies responsible adhere to the strictest measures available.

Gartner advises strict adherence to ?green? laws

The firm argues that because ‘green’ laws vary across the world, coupled with the increasingly international nature of manufacturing practices, IT vendors and distributors need to adopt the most stringent laws active in any country across the board – regardless of where a firm is based. Failure to do so could lead to disruption of international supply lines – the fleet sails at the speed of the slowest ship, so to speak.

The Restriction of Hazardous Substances Directive (RoHS) came into effect in the EU in July. However green laws soon to be adopted in China are reported to be stricter than Europe’s existing laws, and Gartner claims that South Korea, Australia and California are soon to implement even greener laws.

The research firm has stressed that the increased implementation of these environmentally friendly directives will soon have an impact on every manufacturer globally: “The worldwide market should expect to see longer lead times, part shortages and rising prices for non compliant parts over the next two years, ” said Meike Escherich, principal research analyst at Gartner. “Failure to transition products on time can lead to high inventories and dramatic price cuts, similar to the effect we saw in Western Europe as the RoHS came into effect. Non-complaint components will be gradually removed from the global supply chain and force manufacturers to discontinue products that contain them.”

Meanwhile, the EU is set to adopt the Waste of Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) directive in July next year, which will make vendors responsible for the disposal of electrical and electronic goods.

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