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Experts argue that mobile phone recycling awareness could be higher

Wednesday, December 3, 2014 - 12:37:32

Although millions of mobile phones have been recycled in the UK over the past few years, a new report, from IPPTS Associates, claims that more needs to be done to raise public awareness about the availability of recycling services.

Analysts point out that just 6,000 mobile phone handsets contain enough gold to make 50 wedding rings, in addition to 3.5 kilos of silver and a whopping 130 kilos of copper. So, if only a small proportion of the UK’s mobile owning public decide to just throw their old phone in the bin rather than recycling it, a huge amount of resources are going to waste.

Report spokesperson, Steve Symes, said that with just 11 per cent of the population of the UK currently choosing to recycle their old phones, there was good reason to be disappointed in the current efforts made to raise awareness.

Symes pointed out that not all mobiles which end up in general waste will go to land fill, as there are procedures in place to collect certain e-waste items further down the chain. But many will slip through the net and, as well as precious materials going to waste, hazardous substances can also get leaked into the environment as a result.

Meanwhile, millions of mobiles also end up gathering dust in consumers’ homes after they have upgraded to a new model, which is almost equally as wasteful because there is still value to be unlocked in unwanted devices.

Mobile phone recycling is a convenient and efficient way for people to pass on their old phones in return for cash, which means being green has its own incentives in this case. Hopefully, the recycling firms and the government will do more to raise awareness and reduce waste.




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