You may be aware that there are a number of specialist companies who willingly pay anything up to $200 for your old cell phone handset. The handset is then taken and recycled, using a number of different methods. Sometimes the component parts of the cell phone – such as the screen, the keyboard or the battery – are redistributed to create other working handsets, and sometimes the handsets are simply resold whole for profit.
This, of course, solves two problems: it takes the handset off your hands and keeps another unwanted phone potentially out of a waste landfill site. Everybody wins; especially as you may find yourself getting cash for something you had considered worthless.
There is, however, a downside to the phone recycling industry: the better the handset, the higher the price. If, for example, you wanted to ‘recycle’ an iPhone, you would be looking in the region of $200. However… who wants to recycle something that is a recent handset? You’d be better off selling it on eBay – even if it is broken. No, what most of us need is a way to dispose of our really old handsets – the bricks we had when we considered text messaging alone the very forefront of technology. These handsets are worth $10-$15 at most, and with delivery costs it just isn’t worth it.
So we need a solution: something that gets rid of our old handsets from clogging up our homes, but keeps the phones out of landfill waste. If you phone is still in working order, contact a charity and donate it to them. You won’t get any money for it, but a little altruism goes a long way – and that phone will be put to excellent use.
In the 21st century, it would seem that one is not complete without the latest cell phone. With newer and more advanced handsets constantly springing upon the market, the compulsion to keep ahead of the tech game and constantly upgrade handsets for the latest ‘it’ model is extreme – and it’s no wonder the cell phone market is one of the most profitable technology industries in the world.
Throughout the last ten years, the average 30 year old adult is estimated to have had six different cell phone handsets. So what happens to those handsets that have had their day, replaced by shiny new models? While some consumers may be savvy and list their unwanted cells for sale on auction sites like eBay, the vast majority of people will throw the phones away – often by simply dropping them in with their household trash.
This extra pressure on an already over-burdened world of waste has lead to a rise in ‘phone recycling’. There are numerous companies that specialize in taking unwanted handsets and making them useful again – or, at the very lease, recycling the component parts and preventing them from ending up in landfill.
Most of these companies will pay anything from $20 to $200 – depending on your handset – for your old, unused phone. Some companies will not require the phone to be in working order; so you really have nothing to lose, and a lot of cash and environmental points to gain. So before you throw last year’s cell away, see what you could get for it and recycle.
The United Kingdom is currently being presented with a difficult situation, and one that all major nations should take as a warning for how things may go if they do not adapt recycling in to their lifestyles. While the United Kingdom has one of the biggest economies in the world, what it does lack is land – in fact, several US states have a larger land mass than the British Isles.
In the UK – and in most major first world countries – the conventional means of disposing of household and business waste is by using “land fill”. Essentially, land is dug up, waste is insert in to the hole and then the land is refilled. A fairly abhorrent practice, but so far the best that the world has come up with in terms of waste disposal.
The problem in the United Kingdom, however, is that their small land mass and their reliance on using landfill to dispose of waste has caused a problem. These two facts are not compatible, and before long (some say in as soon as seven years), the UK is quite literally going to run out of land to dispose their waste in. The consequences of this would be extreme; land previously dismissed for landfill use due to its heritage or attractive qualities will have to become the property of the waste of a nation, and there is also the unseemly fact that eventually even the ‘good’ land will run out.
The answer, of course, is recycling. When waste is recycled and used again, there is no need for it to ever grace the fields of a country and become part of a landfill.