10 Mar, 2021

MobileMuster encourages Australians to Go for Zero in March

In his new role as MobileMuster Ambassador, leading Australian astrophysicist Professor Alan Duffy is encouraging Australians to join the product stewardship scheme’s nationwide challenge to Go for Zero in March.

 

“One electronic device that almost every adult has is the smartphone. This has changed lives, societies and economies,” Duffy said.

“But when they are no longer of use, we throw these devices into a desk draw or cupboard. Literally letting all the materials and energy that have gone into making our devices go to waste.”

Duffy added that it’s important for precious metals and other materials to be recovered through recycling and then reused in new products. 

“Extending the life of your phone and recycling when it reaches the end of its life is a first step in a circular journey that then never ends,” he said.

Research shows there are 24 million old mobiles in Australia, and about five million of them are actually broken. Inside them are valuable components including metals such as gold, copper, silver and palladium.

“We go to extraordinary lengths to mine these precious resources from across the world and then ship them to giant factories to join assembly lines and then transport them again to their final markets before they end up in your hand,” a MobileMuster statement reads. 

“That’s a lot of energy, a lot of carbon, a lot of resources.” 

If all five million of those broken phones were recycled, it would save 9850 tonnes of mineral resources from needing to be extracted from the ground, as well as 1930 tonnes of CO2 emissions. 

“When you take action and return that phone to MobileMuster for recycling, 95 per cent of all materials are recovered and used again,” the statement reads. 

“It’s a fantastic outcome. And now that MobileMuster is 100 per cent carbon neutral you know you are helping to reduce your carbon footprint too. ” 

To encourage Australians to Go for Zero in March, MobileMuster has outlined six easy steps to enact reuse, recycle and repair: 

Seasonal cleanouts

make a time every few months to go through your things and see what can be recycled, repaired, re-gifted or reused. While going through those cupboards, collect your old mobile phones and accessories and drop them off at your nearest participating MobileMuster collection point or order a free mailing satchel.

Do your research

read up, listen to podcasts, ask an expert, inform yourself on the small acts we can all take to repair, reuse and recycle the things we own. Understanding where your item will end up once you’ve finished with it will help see its longer term uses and how it could be recycled.

Buy consciously

think before you buy. Ask yourself do I need it? Look to buy products made with recycled materials and content. Find a retailer or manufacturer who is undertaking sustainable business practices such as recycling, responsible packaging, zero carbon emissions or are part of a product stewardship program.

Understand your impact

use the MobileMuster calculator to understand the environmental impact and benefits of your recycling.

Make your home, school and business greener

try going paperless where possible, use smart technologies to help manage electricity usage in the home, school or offline and power down devices when you’re not using them.

Have the conversation

talk to your friends, family, neighbours and colleagues about the importance of recycling, reusing and repairing and encourage them to take part in the Go For Zero challenge March 2021.

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A local government partnership initiative