Global – Greenpeace is urging Samsung to reuse and recycle the parts of the 1.8 million Galaxy Note 7 phones that were recently recalled due to safety concerns. A total of 4.3 million handhelds of this type have been manufactured, which will all be taken back and ‘disposed of’ by Samsung. The question remains what will become of the precious metals stored inside the faulty gadgets.
A series of battery-related fire incidents caused Samsung to order a global recall of its Note 7 phones. The electronics brand has reached out to consumers, saying that the handhelds ‘will not be repaired, refurbished, or resold ever again’.
Meanwhile, almost 165 pounds of raw mined materials were needed to manufacture the average cell phone in 2013, reports the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. Considering the Note 7 is one of the biggest phones currently on the market, the amount of materials needed for production is thought to be a lot higher.
It has been estimated that all the Note 7 models contain as much as 730 000 kilograms (1.6 million pounds) of high-end materials, such as gold and cobalt, that could very well be reused or recycled.
Therefore, Greenpeace has started a public petition, which already has more than 25 000 signatures, demanding that Samsung reuse and recycle as many of the materials as possible – or at least publish a plan detailing how it will deal with dismantling and disposing these phones. ‘Samsung must act transparently to ensure these gadgets don’t end up in the trash,’ Greenpeace states. ‘We also urge Samsung not to dump or burn the devices.’
‘Now is the perfect opportunity for the brand to show leadership and vision, breaking with the old ways and opening the door to rethinking how it designs, sells and reuses its electronics,’ the group concludes.