Sustainability


Every year, an abundance of smartphones enter into circulation across the globe as consumers upgrade to new devices and become unaware of what to do with their old phones, often times putting them to retirement in drawers, or worse, the trash. The world produced 44m tonnes of e-waste in 2017 and the annual value of global e-waste is more than £48.5bn. [1] Electronics account for up to 70 percent of landfill's toxic waste, with phones being the worst culprits for leaching toxic chemicals into the soil [2]

Manufacturing new smartphones harms the environment by producing carbon emission. According to a study from McMaster University published in the Journal of Cleaner Production, “the problem is that building a new smartphone – and specifically, mining the rare materials inside them –represents 85% to 95% of the device’s total CO2 emissions for two years. That means buying one new phone takes as much energy as recharging and operating a smartphone for an entire decade.” [3]

Reselling or recycling your unused device is eco-friendly be promoting reuse and conversation. Dr. Frederic Beaudry, Associate Professor of Environmental Science at Alfred University in New York, validates “cell phones and personal digital assistants (PDAs) contain a variety of precious metals, copper, and plastics. Recycling or reusing cell phones and PDAs not only conserves these valuable materials, it also prevents air and water pollution and reduces greenhouse gas emissions that occur during manufacturing and while extracting and processing virgin materials.” [4]

The majority of all devices collected from the kiosks are sold for full reuse to extend the usage period for as long as possible. The remaining devices are sold to certified recyclers, refurbishes and wholesalers, to guarantee the component materials are responsibly reclaimed and reused. ecoATM take steps to ensure that devices sold to our kiosks do not end up in landfills, keeping harmful toxic materials including cadmium, mercury and arsenic out of the environment.

In the US, ecoATM has diverted over 23 million devices from landfills over the past decade in the US. [5] To put that into context, in its diversion of this many devices from landfills, ecoATM has the equivalent positive impact on the environment as removing over 2,500 cars from the road or planting over four million trees around the world. This success has centered around offering a fair price for pre-owned devices and the convenience of being paid on the spot.

According to Green Alliance, an independent think tank and charity focused on ambitious leadership for the environment, “28-125 million phones languish unused in the UK alone. This means for every phone in use, up to four sit in drawers unused.” [6]

With up to 125 million phones estimated to be languishing unused (four for every household) in the UK [4], ecoATM is a eco-friendly answer to the problem of unwanted smartphones and growing levels of -smart phones and electronic devices. The majority of all devices collected from the kiosks are sold for full reuse to extend the usage period for as long as possible. The remaining devices are sold to certified recyclers, refurbishers and wholesalers, to guarantee the component materials are responsibly reclaimed and reused. The UK is ecoATM’s first expansion globally. In the year 2018, having been extremely successful in the US for over 10 years, ecoATM identified the UK as a natural market to expand. British consumers possess a passion and a zeal for the environment and sustainability and have been quite receptive to the eco-friendly service that the ecoATM kiosks provide.