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To Greener Conversations with Phone Recycling

To Greener Conversations with Phone Recycling

Never before in the history of humanity has a product captured the popular imagination quite so much as the mobile phone. From the old hefty plastic bricks that were the original mobile phones to today’s sleek, ultra-sophisticated, multi-purpose communications devices, this one human artifact is well on the way to becoming ubiquitous. 

Today, more than half the population of the entire world has a subscription with a mobile carrier, meaning there are more than 4 billion mobile phones are in use right now. In the UK, there are more mobile phones than people to talk on them. In addition, since carriers offer an upgrade every 18 to 24 months, up to 100 million phones end up gathering dust in a drawer. Add to that as many as 5 billion discarded earlier models worldwide, and you could have a disaster of catastrophic proportions just waiting to destroy life as we know it.

What happens to mobile phones that are simply discarded in the landfill when we get a newer model?

The extraction of raw material to make cell phones uses a lot of energy and water. Cell phones are made up of hundreds of different substances, many of which are demonstrably toxic heavy metals like lead, which can affect the nervous system, mercury, which can cause brain damage, cadmium, fatal in high doses, even arsenic. When a mobile phone is discarded in the landfill, it breaks down into its original components, which then seep into the groundwater and carry these pernicious effects to human, animal and plant life. In addition, the raw materials are lost, and in order to produce new mobile phones, more raw material must be extracted, more energy, more pure water applied. 

Recycling mobile phones is a solution to the twin problems of pollution and production. When you recycle your old mobile phone, you liberate materials to continue in the cycle of creation; rather than being compelled to spend valuable resources on extracting minerals and other materials, these materials can be used again, to create the next generation of cell phone or many other useful products. In addition, you prevent the damage that toxic materials can cause when found in groundwater, preserving the health of both the environment and the life within it.

Sometimes, recycled mobile phones can be refurbished and sold at lower prices, or even given to those who cannot afford one, many to developing countries.

For greener conversations and cleaner consciences please recycle your old mobile phone.

 
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