4.7 million Brits admit throwing phone away in a waste bin

Image by Kevin, Flikr

In a study by YouGov for Vodafone, 4.7 million people (7%) in the UK admit to throwing their old phone away in a general waste bin instead of recycling or trading, showing how Brits are missing out on £6.9bn of potential savings by not trading in their existing handsets as they upgrade;

Despite the potential savings, 88% of Brits have never traded in a phone before, with the vast majority massively underestimating (by over £100) what a handset could be worth if traded in when choosing a new handset;

third of Brits who don’t trade-in decided to skip savings and keep their old handset as a back-up – but nearly two thirds (58%) say they’ve never used them.  Nearly 60% of households in the UK have between one and three unused devices sitting at home unused;

Security and privacy are big concerns for Brits who don’t trade-in, with a quarter saying they wouldn’t trade in for this reason.  Meanwhile, nearly a quarter of people (25%) who have traded-in say they didn’t receive as much for their phone as they were promised;

E-waste is the fastest growing waste in the world and Vodafone has launched its trade-in tool to help overcome the issues that have put people off trading in their phones.  It is estimated that 53.6 million tonnes of e-waste were generated across the planet in 2019projected to reach 75 million tonnes by 2030, 9 kg for every person in the world;

E-waste has great value, with the raw materials contained in the global e-waste generated in 2019 were worth approximately €50.8 billion;

Less than 18% of this global e-waste was officially documented as recycled last year, with the rest either placed in landfill, burned or illegally traded and treated in a sub-standard way and this is despite 71% of the world’s population being covered by e-waste legislation;

This results in a huge loss of valuable and critical raw materials from the supply chain and causes serious health, environmental and societal issues:  we need to do a lot better to preserve our limited resources of rare metals if we want to continue having mobile phones!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: