The Secret Life of a Smart Phone

By Tonka Dobreva 10.17.2014 blog

According to latest estimates by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the average American household uses about 24 electronic products: personal computers, mobile phones, televisions and e-readers. Americans discard more than 2 million tons of obsolete electronic products annually. 

In 2012, the EPA launched its Sustainable Materials Management (SMM) Electronics Challenge. The goal is to make electronics refurbishing and recycling a standard practice among tech companies. Last year, the combined efforts of the participants in the challenge, among them Best Buy, Dell and LG Electronics, made a big impact: 

  •  221,192 metric tons of end-of-life electronics were diverted from the landfill
  •  220,531 metric tons of end-of-life electronics were sent to third-party certified recyclers 
  • 41,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent were averted in 2013 by increasing certified recycling 

You, too, can make a difference by being smart with your smart phone — check out this infographic to learn how:



  1. Nancy Taylor

    There are many ways to get rid of e-waste . Well to begin with I understand that people are in need of a job this part of a country which is not very wealthy only gets paid 3 dollars a day and needs to support there family . The waste that goes into the air is not purified at all and is said to cause dieses and may result in death. Also, if there was time where someone was to get cancer from the fumes then they probably wouldn’t be able to treat it because of the poverty . To conclude the country India should not have to risk getting these dieses because there so poor because the children have a long life to live and they need are help in getting rid of the e-waste .

  2. ian mccurdy

    I think that you should handle what happens to your smart phones and old computers. First you should try to fix it or let someone fix it. Second if you cant fix it you should get rid of it yourself. If you can not fix it or get rid of it yourself then you should know where it is going. When you buy a phone or a computer you are responsible for what happens to it or where it goes. This is what I think about this.

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