The mobile phone industry in Australia funds an electronic waste recycling program for mobile phones known as Mobile Muster. It’s the only program of its kind in the world and provides free collection and recycling services to consumers, retailers, businesses, schools and councils.
The program takes back unwanted mobile phones, batteries and accessories at the end of their useful life. The valuable materials in these phones is then recovered for reuse, and the end result is less mobile phones, batteries and accessories ending up in landfill.
Did you know that…
- Most people buy a new phone every two years.
- Over 52% people keep their old mobile phones, resulting in more than 16 million mobile phones being stashed away in cupboards and drawers at home and work.
- More than 90% of the materials in mobile phones can be recovered such as nickel, cadmium, cobalt from batteries; gold, silver, and copper from circuit boards; various plastics and other metals from handsets and accessories.
- One ton of circuit boards can yield about the same amount of precious metals as 110 tons of gold ore, 124 tons of silver bearing ore, and 11 tons of copper sulphide ore.
- The materials recovered can be used to make batteries, jewellery, stainless steel, plastic pallets and fence posts (Cyclone Composite Posts).
- Mobile phones don't biodegrade and shouldn’t be put in the rubbish bin. Especially batteries that contain cadmium which can potentially harm the environment.
What/Where do I recycle?
Simply bring in your old mobile phones, batteries and accessories and place them in the Civic Centre or Thomas Street Centre collection bins. It's that easy!
What happens to them?
All mobiles collected are sent to The Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association's official recycler in Melbourne They are then dismantled, sorted and separated into circuit boards, batteries, handsets and accessories. These are then processed either locally or overseas for resource recovery.
We can all help with the responsible recycling of our old unwanted mobile phones. When you get a new mobile phone, it’s easy to drop your old phone off at one of Council's two Mobile Muster collection points. If you’d like more information on Mobile Muster, please visit http://www.mobilemuster.com.au/