The Future Home – Aspects of Domestic Sustainability’s Future

December 2021

Domestic sustainability will be a key part of future home designs. With the work from home trend becoming a permanent part of our lives, our carbon footprint will only increase. Appliance companies are aware of this and have developed innovative solutions to address it. E-waste is also a very near-term issue facing companies. In this report, we highlight six key topics and leading solutions that have been developed to meet these challenges.

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Key Findings

Resource scarcity

The future will be dominated by resource scarcity and increasing prices. The future home will navigate consumers from a mindset of abundance to one of compromise.

Investors focus on ESG

Environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) has entered the shareholder lexicon and investors are holding CEOs accountable for ESG targets.

Consumer demand for sustainability

Consumers are increasingly leaning towards green brands, in line with the “new consumerism” which sees consumers reassessing their priorities, with conscious consumption increasingly replacing conspicuous consumption.

Sustainability is now a profitable venture

Sustainability had always been thought of as a business cost. However, CEOs have publicly announced that they now view sustainability as vital to their business and a profitable venture for themselves and consumers.

Beyond increasing appliance efficiency

Traditional sustainable technologies had focused on increasing a product’s energy and water efficiency. However, this has neared the limit of physics. The focus has now shifted to using AI to learn consumer behaviours and reach accordingly.

Metal replacement and lightweighting technology

Prices of commodities such as metals and copper are likely to continue increasing due to competition from more sectors, such as renewable energy. It is likely that appliance companies will need to look at replacement material that not only reduces the amount of material used, but also reduces appliances’ weight.

Your right to repair

Repairing an appliance or device has traditionally been impractical due to the cost and availability of spare parts. The right to repair movement seeks to change it and wean consumers off the throwaway culture.

 

Introduction

Scope
Key findings
Sustainability: global facts
Why is environmental sustainability important for businesses?
There are clearly many reasons why a business needs to be sustainable
Purpose-led innovation is a moral response to the global situation
“Build Back Better” in 2021: A second chance to create a better future
We will be discussing six important domestic sustainability topics

The Future Home

Overview of Home and Technology strategic themes for 2021
An overview of the strategic theme: The future home
Aspects that give insight into how the future home will work
Companies are meeting consumer needs using various strategies
Domestic sustainability’s future: A story of the future home

Aspects of Domestic Sustainability’s Future

Reducing carbon footprint will be a central theme of the future home
Residential homes contribute 10.9% of global greenhouse gas emissions

Aspects of Domestic Sustainability’s Future – energy Efficiency

Energy Efficiency
Home appliances are major consumers of energy
Increasing energy efficiency has been a focus for decades
What are refrigerator manufacturers doing to increase energy efficiency?
How can AI in air conditioners help increase energy efficiency?
Energy prices will drive increased focus on cold washing

Aspects of Domestic Sustainability’s Future – food waste

Food Waste
Recipe firms and appliance companies help consumers plan their meals
A key way to prevent overbuying is to know what you already have
What are appliance companies doing to reduce food wastage?
What are appliance companies doing to reduce food wastage?

Aspects of Domestic Sustainability’s Future - Materials

Materials
Enhancing materials through engineering plastics with DuPont
Historically high copper prices are forcing a redesign of air conditioners

Aspects of Domestic Sustainability’s Future – water recovery

Water Recovery
Moving from water efficiency to water recovery
Hydraloop: The home water recycling system
Using technology to replace water usage in the washing machine

Aspects of Domestic Sustainability’s Future – Waste recycling

Waste Recycling
Governments will play an important role in regulating e-waste
China is promoting EPR among home appliance companies
Lasso Loop Recycling: The first home recycling appliance

Aspects of Domestic Sustainability’s Future – Modularity and Repair

Modularity and Repair
The Right to Repair movement
Modularity in electronics has arrived. Will appliances be next?
Apple parts, tools, and manuals: starting with the iPhone 12 & iPhone 13

The Way Forward

CEOs now see sustainability as a profit driver rather than a cost
Golden age for CEOs’ sustainability activism
Key takeaways for businesses
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