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Recycle a phone and help clean the ocean

Date: 01-Feb-19
Author: Liam Taylor

MobileMuster are teaming up with Take 3 for the Sea to tackle two of Australia's biggest waste issues: e-waste and plastic pollution. © MobileMuster

MobileMuster are teaming up with Take 3 for the Sea to tackle two of Australia's biggest waste issues: e-waste and plastic pollution.

To begin 2019 with a recycling bang, our friends at MobileMuster and Take 3 for the Sea have partnered up in a mission to tackle two of the biggest waste issues facing Australia: electronic waste and plastic pollution.

Electronic waste is growing at least three times the rate of other waste streams in Australia while an estimated 9 million metric tonnes of plastic enters our oceans every year. To rectify these issues, MobileMuster and Take 3 for the Sea have set a target to collect at least 30,000 old mobile phones over January and February 2019, with every mobile phone recycled helping Take 3 for the Sea in its mission to clean our oceans and waterways.

The average Australian has good intentions when it comes to recycling their old phones, with new research revealing almost half intend to recycle their phone when they purchase it. However, there is a big gap between intention and action with only 15 percent of people actually following through on recycling old devices. In fact, MobileMuster estimates there are about 23 million unused mobile phones going to waste in the drawers and cupboards of Australian homes.

The collaboration between MobileMuster and Take 3 for the Sea aims to close this gap between intention and action, allowing people to declutter their homes, preserve important resources contained in old devices and clean up our environment all at the same time. 

Need another reason to dig out that old phone? By sending your device to MobileMuster you can be sure that it will be recycled for the circular economy. Through the program 99% of the material from old phones and accessories are recovered and used in manufacturing new products, reducing the need for virgin materials. All the metal, glass and plastic in your mobile phone has the potential for a second life.

How to recycle your mobiles at home, work and school:

  1. At home - Take three minutes at home to dig out your old mobile phones and accessories. Transfer and remove any data you have on your mobile phone. To do so, follow MobileMuster’s simple data management tips. Recycle at your local mobile phone retail store including Telstra, Optus and Vodafone stores. Search for your nearest location or pick up a free recycling satchel from any Australia Post store.
  2. At work - Register online for your organisation to become a collection partner, you can nominate whether you'd like this to be listed as a public drop-off point. You can download free promotional resources.
  3. At School - Get the whole school involved by running a muster and access promotional material and lesson plans. 
  4. For every mobile phone recycled over January and February, you will be helping Take 3 for the Sea remove plastic pollution in our oceans.  

So, do you have an old phone or some accessories squirreled away? Help the fish out by fishing them out and getting them recycled. They won’t do you any good in that drawer!

More information

MobileMuster has been promoting the circular economy and operating e-waste recycling since 1998. To date, MobileMuster has facilitated the recycling of over 1,412 tonnes of electronics and prevented the extraction of over 1,000 tonnes of virgin mineral resources.

Take 3 for the Sea was founded in 2009 with the mission of reducing plastic pollution and promoting the transition to a circular economy through education and participation. Since then the organisation has grown from a grassroots project to become a leading voice on plastic pollution in 129 countries around the world.

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Liam                                              Taylor

Liam Taylor

Liam is Planet Ark's Communications Coordinator. Prior to joining Planet Ark Liam spent his time studying global environmental issues, travelling Southeast Asia on the cheap and working for a sustainable property management company in Bali, Indonesia.