What will happen to older cellphones if they’re no longer useful to their owners? Mobile telephone owners have many good options, and none of those include throwing the old mobile telephone away in the trash or leaving it in a very dusty drawer.

Depending on United States EPA, Americans recycled approximately 14 million used mobile phones in 2007. When recycled, cellphones can be taken apart for the parts, thus they are able to then be used in other phones or some other technology, they can be donated to charities to help individuals who have true need of cellphones but can not afford them, or they are donated to our military. Any one of these choices improve on allowing an old time mobile telephone to collect dust in a very old drawer with all of the other unused mobile phones, and these are better choices than throwing that old mobile telephone away, thus possibly toxic chemicals may be added to the landfills.

Cellphone batteries include lead and mercury that can be detrimental to humans and animals when placed in landfills or burned. Most mobile phones have adequate lead in them to become considered dangerous waste as per the federal guidelines. Even phones that can be lead free are believed to be dangerous waste in California due to high amounts of copper, nickel, antimony, and zinc that end up thrown away into landfills and in the end leech out to pollute water and soil. The EPA estimates that recycling one million mobile phones provides sufficient power to power 185 houses with electricity for a year.

Cellphones for Soldiers is yet another way to recycle phones. This might be a charity which had been were only available in 2004 by just a 13 year old girl and her 12 year old brother. This charity collects mobile phones, sells them to become recycled, then takes that cash from the mobile phone recycling and buys prepaid phone cards for American soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan. The charity estimates they will likely receive 750,000 mobile phones to be recycled in 2011. Thus much the charity has collected over 7.5 million cellphones which has turned into 90 million prepaid calling card minutes for American soldiers.

Another company that collects mobile phones for charity is Collective Good. This company takes older and used mobile phones, refurbishes them and sells them for utilize in developing nations. With this, poorer people are able to have cellular phones while at the same time less phones are entering landfills. Collective Good also recycles non-working mobile telephone batteries, keeping lots of chemicals out of landfills.

More companies are additionally purchasing used mobile phones from people. Some even pay the postage to have client mail the utilized mobile phone directly to them, whether telephone doesn’t work. Frequently, for the business buying an utilized mobile phone, the metals inside the phone make purchasing a broker phone worth the cost. So although selling an used phone isn’t as altruistic to be a donation, this still keeps phones from landfills which still help the environment.

Old mobile phones are adding tons of toxic metals and chemicals to our landfills, polluting the air and water. Whether donating or selling an old time mobile phone, the user is creating our environment safer for everybody as well as anything by not adding to landfills.

Jane Grahame is the webmistress of http://www.whatsmyphoneworth.com/ – a price comparison service for people wanting to recycle mobile phones to leading mobile phone recyclers in the UK. She also uses her mobile phone far too much!


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