Recycling Your Cell Phones

>> Thursday, December 2, 2010

Almost every person I know owns a mobile phone. Some of them owns 3 or more cell phones while others make it a point to change their units every year or so. Certainly, mobile phones make our lives easier. However, we should also be mindful of how these nifty gadgets affect our environment. A recent studies revealed these interesting yet alarming facts regarding worldwide cell phone usage:

  • There are 6.7 billion people on this planet and 61% have a cell phone subscription. That’s 4.1 billion mobile phones.
  • Average consumers will use their phones for only 18 months.
  • The average household in the US and UK has 3 unused cell phones.
  • Every second, 4 cell phones end up in landfills. That’s 140,000,000 mobile phones this year. And these will leech 80,000 pound of lead and other toxic wastes like cadmium, arsenic and mercury into the earth. These toxic wastes find their way to the local municipal landfill.
  • Along with those hazardous materials are precious metals like gold, silver, copper and platinum which can be reused to make new cell phone or cell phone parts.
The good news is that cell phones are recyclable but only 1 out of 10 are ever recycled. Recycling of cell phones reduces waste and the need of mining to produce even more handsets. It’s a good thing that many cell phone manufacturers these days have initiated programs to encourage consumers to recycle their handsets. There are even independent mobile phone recycling companies that offer cash for mobile phones which make the process of selling old mobile phones fast and easy.

So the next time you plan on getting yourself a new cell phone, make sure that your old one gets recycled. Find the most convenient method for you to do that and you’re on your way to helping in the preservation of Mother Earth.

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