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Greenpeace: “What 10 Years of Smartphone Use Mean for the Planet “


“Greenpeace called on the IT sector to ‘rethink’ its production model at the
Mobile World Congress in Spain.” Photo credit: Pablo Blazquez, Greenpeace.



– “What 10 Years of Smartphone Use Means for the Planet”
“In our new report “From Smart to Senseless: The Global Impact of Ten Years of Smartphones” we unpack the problems with the current smartphone production model.

Here is some of what we found:

* 7.1 billion smartphones have been produced ​since 2007.
* More than 60 different elements are commonly used in the manufacturing of smartphones. While the amount of each element in a single device may seem small, the combined impacts of mining and processing these precious materials for 7 billion devices is significant.
* In 2014 alone, e-waste from small IT products like smartphones was estimated to be 3 million metric tons. Less than an estimated 16 percent of global e-waste is recycled.
* Only two (Fairphone and LG G5) of 13 models reviewed had easily replaceable batteries. This means consumers are forced to replace their whole devices when the battery life starts to dwindle.
* Since 2007, roughly 968 terawatt hours (TWh) has been used to manufacture smartphones, which is nearly the same as one year’s power supply for India (973 TWh in 2014).
* At end-of-life, current design makes disassembly difficult, including the use of proprietary screws and glued in batteries; therefore, smartphones are often shredded and sent for smelting when “recycled.” Given the small amounts of a wide diversity of materials and substances in small devices, smelting is inefficient, or ineffective, at recovering many of the materials.”

“This rapid turnover of devices is what leads to record profits for smartphone manufacturers year after year. It also leads to many damaging impacts on people and our planet.”
By Elizabeth Jardim, Greenpeace.
Read more

Posted by Steve on April 8, 2017 at 12:01 am | Permalink

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