EPA to buy Dell computers

Dell Inc. will sell new computers and recycle old ones for — appropriately — the Environmental Protection Agency.

According to the three-year blanket purchase agreement, EPA can buy or lease up to 10,000 desktops, notebooks and servers in any combination. When EPA buys replacement computers, Dell will take the old machines, overwrite their data with binary gibberish to prevent anyone from recovering the information and resell them, with proceeds going to EPA, or dispose of them according to EPA guidelines, said Thomas Buchsbaum, vice president of federal systems for Dell.

He announced the new blanket purchase agreement today at the FOSE government technology show.

The arrangement shows Dell's commitment to deliver professional services with products, company officials said.

Dell's federal division maintains an integrated solutions team that develops service and product combinations, Buchsbaum said. If the needed items and skills are readily available within Dell or as commodities, a new offering "can happen in one day," he said.

Dell is aiding the EPA in consolidation and standardization efforts, he said. The asset recovery service was something EPA officials requested.

"It's important that our computer systems are disposed of in an environmentally sound manner at the end of their lifecycles," said Cliff Moore, director of technology for EPA's Office of Research Development. "We urge other government agencies to look at similar asset recovery models for their systems."

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