Did you know that each year in the United States, we set aside 100 million cellular phones that we no longer use? It's no wonder, especially with the ever changing demand for smart phones. The Environmental Protection Agency
says that if all those phones were recycled, we would save enough energy to power 18,500 homes for a year.
The EPA has reminders at its website about erasing personal information and terminating cellular service before recycling your phone. It points out that numerous businesses now offer free drop-offs for your old phones, and others allow you to mail them in. Recycling drives have also become a great way for some charities to raise money.
If you are not only environmentally conscious, but frugal, you might want to try another way of putting older phones to good use. Someone in your own community may want to buy or swap for your used phone if it's in good condition. I did a quick search on a trading site, and there were dozens of people wanting to sell their phones in my area.
You may want to trade your old phones in for coupons, like I recently did. I used the Recyclebank
program, which my community uses to encourage household curbside recycling. I'm already signed up to receive coupons based on how many pounds of household materials I recycle each week. Now I'm earning more points toward coupons by mailing Reyclebank my old cell phones. I liked that the company wanted not only my phone, but any accessories that came with it. I think all of those useless cords that don't work with anything else are the biggest waste of storage space. It took me a while to fill out the online forms and delete personal information, then I wrapped up the phones and packaged everything in an old shoebox with a postage-paid mailing label that Recyclebank provided.
Once the phones are received, I'm expecting about ten dollars worth of my choice of grocery coupons. It feels great to clear out some clutter, help the environment and get something useful in return.
Labels: environmental, frugal, green, recycling, thrifty