Electrical Waste

02 Customers recycle two million mobile phones as part of Think Big initiative

Old phones recycled

It has been reported by edie.net that 02 customers have saved more than £135 million since 2009 by recycling old mobile phones through its Think Big programme.

With more than two million devices having being sent to recycling plants, more than 10,000 tonnes of emissions have been saved alongside 26 million litres of water.

According to 02, this equates to taking 2,000 cars off the road and could supply 10 average houses with energy for a total of 77 years.

Mark McGinn, 02’s head of sustainability marketing, said:

When we launched O2 Recycle in 2009, our ambition was to offer people a simple, environmentally friendly way of disposing of their old tech and to reward them for doing so.

“We’re proud to have reached this landmark figure, with more people than ever recycling their devices with us and becoming the biggest mobile network recycler in Europe.”

Out of all the handsets recycled since the beginning of the programme, over half of them were sent to 02 over the last two years, with a total of 430,000 in 2015.

According to Green Alliance, emission savings from the scheme accounts for a total of one per cent of 02’s UK emissions.

Jonathon Porritt, found of Forum for the Future, said:

E-waste has become the fastest-growing waste stream worldwide, representing a massive sustainability challenge.

“With an impressive two million devices already recycled, it’s really important that O2 continues to encourage consumers to take actions of this kind.”

Out of all the phones recycled, the iPhone 5s was the most prevalent, accounting for 14 per cent and £4.5 million out of the recycled volume.

Earlier in the year 02 announced that it was establishing itself as an “agent of change” by enhancing the livelihood of 20 million customers through a sustainable living pledge.

Andy has worked as a freelance journalist for a number of years and has been published in some of the UK’s top newspapers. He is now the editor Commercial Waste Magazine and contributes to a large selection of headlines and blog articles on the site.

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