The nationwide Repair Bonus starts 26th of April 2022 on www.reparaturbonus.at !
Funding is provided for 50 percent of the repair costs up to a maximum of 200 euros per repaired device.
Repair is the supreme discipline of the circular economy!
Half of the carbon emitted globally and 90% of biodiversity loss is caused by the extraction of natural resources and their processing (UN Environment 2020: Global Resources Outlook 2019).
No wonder, then, that more than 50% of all environmental impacts in the lifetime of major household appliances occur during their production and distribution (Steiner, et al., 2005: Timely Replacement of White Goods). This surprisingly large ecological backpack can only be compensated by extending the lifespan of appliances as much as possible by spreading it over as many years as possible. The essential element of extending the useful life of e-appliances is their repair.
Anyone who replaces his/her washing machine because newer models supposedly wash more economically is either a "consumer idiot" or a victim of the "energy efficiency lie". According to the European consumer protection organization BEUC, the most energy-efficient washing machine can save a maximum of €1.80 per year:
For example, if EU households used only their washing machines, vacuum cleaners, laptops and smartphones for one year longer, 4 million tons of CO2 would be saved. That's the equivalent of 2 million cars that would be wiped off Europe's roads at once:
Crutch against market failure and loss of know-how
The repair bonus is a long overdue compensation for market failures! The repair of consumer durables (household appliances and entertainment equipment - and furniture) accounted for 300 million, or 4.5%, of Austria's consumer durables repair market volume (6.7 billion) in 2016, although 12.9 billion was spent on new appliances (WIFO). The federal government's repair funding thus reverses the trend toward the extinction of the electrical appliance repair trade and prevents further loss of repair know-how. Repair and service technology is thus becoming a profession of the future. With our ReSeTech training program, we have already taken the necessary steps. Weiterbildungsprogramm ReSeTech haben wir dahingehend bereits vorgebaut.
But beware: repair funding is only a crutch to limp towards fair conditions for repair services: We need a socially balanced, ecological tax reform that makes critical raw materials more expensive and relieves labor! It is interesting that regulatory policy is needed to compensate for market failures. So the "self-cleaning power" of the capitalist market system might not be far off!