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Campaigners criticise lack of mobile recyclability

Wednesday, March 8, 2017 - 09:43:28

Late last month the Mobile World Congress event held in Barcelona was earning headlines around the world thanks to the dazzling array of new smartphones which were unveiled there. But attention was also drawn to the current issues facing the electronics market, specifically when it comes to mobile phone recycling.

Activists from Greenpeace deliberately disrupted a launch event hosted by South Korean tech giant, Samsung, during MWC 2017 in order to highlight the environmental drawbacks associated with the recall of the now defunct Galaxy Note 7 which took place last year.

Campaigners for the charity pointed out that over four million Note 7s were recalled because of battery issues that were resulting in fires. Now because of the design of the phone, recycling them is going to be difficult.

Samsung counters these claims by arguing that it is in the process of finding the most sustainable, responsible way to process these recalled handsets. But until evidence of this is shown, critics will continue to put pressure on the company.

In the wake of the Note 7 battery combustion scandal, Samsung has launched a marketing campaign which aims to show consumers just how rigorously it tests its products. However, people may take quite a bit of convincing given the high profile nature of the failure that the firm suffered in 2016.

Millions of tonnes of old smartphones and other unwanted electronics are disposed of each year around the world, but it is only by recycling these devices that a growing environmental disaster can be averted.

Furthermore, by selling old mobile phones consumers are not only doing their bit to make the world a greener place, but can also reclaim some of the cash they originally invested in the phone to plumb back into future purchases.




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