Our project will enable Stardust Building Supplies to enhance its economic pillar of sustainability by saving money recycling old appliances. As a nonprofit that collects and repurposes technology, Stardust receives many different used building materials, household items, and appliances from across the state. Of these appliances, some are sold and given a second life, and some are not. Those that remain still have inventory costs. This is the challenge that was presented to the GreenLight project team.
Stardust wants to know if it is more cost-effective to break down appliances and sell any valuable materials inside, or if they should continue to shelf these items in their warehouse. Our team set out to find new uses for old appliances, and help close the loop on a valuable waste stream. Stardust has been working on just that. Often, Stardust will round up all their unsold appliances and scrap them whole, which is a standard procedure. Our goal is to take a more nuanced approach as we attempt to create a more optimal situation.
The framework we developed will give Stardust the ability to adapt to the ever-changing times that lay ahead. We specifically focused on ovens, dishwashers, and refrigerators. We summed up scrap prices and disassembly times to analyze what route Stardust should take. We hope to have created a win-win for Stardust and the environment!
Written by Sam Schneider, Stardust Project Lead