Its National Cell Phone Recycling Week in the U.S. The Environmental Protection Agency has partnered with manufacturers and service providers to raise awareness regarding the need to recycle your cell phone and accessories. Of course, you can recycle any week, but the special effort during the week of April 6-12, 2009 is to kick things up for Earth Day 2009 on April 22.
Just last weekend, I noticed 3 old cell phone, chargers and earpieces in a drawer in my kitchen. I’m recycling them this week at a cell phone retailer here in town. Maybe I’ll even win a prize for my green efforts!
How many discarded phones or PDAs do you have lurking in hidden corners at your place? Let’s do some green spring cleaning!
The EPA website describes its efforts to increase “ecycling”:
“To kick-off National Cell Phone Recycling Week and build momentum for Earth Day 2009, program partners across the country are rolling out a series of in-store promotions, contests and giveaways while providing in-store and online recycling opportunities to assist consumers in the “eCycling” process. Plug-In partners supporting this nationwide effort through special promotions include AT&T, Samsung, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon Wireless”
Sadly, only 10% of all cell phones are recycled each year. This is in large part due to the fact that people don’t know how or where to recycle them. As a result, harmful batteries, lead, precious metals and plastics build up in landfills. If you recycle your phone or PDA, many components can be re-used. Its a win-win for everyone.
Not only can you take your old phones into a cell phone retailer (even if you’re not exchanging for a new one), but there are many non-profit agencies that would love your phones – from churches to servicemen and women. The American Cell Phone Drive.org will also accept old cell phones and accessories. Your donation can be used to raise funds for many worthy charitable organizations. Go to the site, enter your zip code and you’ll be directed to a drop-off box in your own hometown.
Recycling cell phones is also a great idea for local fundraising (think schools or scouts). Organize a convenient drop off location and ask for donations. Take the discarded electronics to one of the sites described above. Hooray! Great green efforts pay off.
C’mon. Do it now. Pull open those drawers and the glove box in your car. Get rid of the old electronics in a environmentally-sound way. That’s making the right call!