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Recycle an old mobile phone when moving carriers
Posted on 7-Nov-2003 07:44 | Tags Filed under: News

A company that specialises in buying and selling old mobile phones luanched a web site where users can access a FAQ about number portability. And since the industry forecast of millions of users will switch carriers, keep the phone number and upgrade the mobile phone model, enviromental scientist are worried about what will happen to old mobile phones.

Reliable Communications has launched a web site giving American mobile phone users step-by-step instructions for keeping their phone numbers and how to recycle their old mobile phone.

Monday, 24th November 2003, is the onslaught of "Wireless Local Number Portability," a federal mandate allowing cell phone users to keep their phone numbers when they switch providers. Telecom consulting firm TMNG reports that as many as 10 million cell phone users plan to change service providers on this date. Another 30 million, according to the firm, are prepared to follow suit.

Changing providers still means changing phones. If 'only' 10 million people switch, they will generate almost 1,500 tons of electronic waste and well over a billion dollars in new phones and handsets. Those 10 million old phones can wind up in landfills, or they can find new life through Reliable's programs.

With thousands of tons of cell phones and adapters/chargers slated for disposal, the case for recycling is compelling. "Mobile phones pose special problems at landfills," says Chris Grubb, CEO of Reliable Communications. "There are toxic chemicals in the batteries and other components."

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