Environmentalists have come to the conclusion that this year landfills around the world will see the emergence of 5.3 billion used cell phones, the majority of which will not be destroyed.
As for the total volume of “electronic waste”, it will amount to 24.5 million tons, according to what was announced by the press office of the International Orientation Forum WEEE, and published by the “Russia Today” website, according to a local Arabic daily.
“These devices can be a valuable resource for the production of other electronic devices, which is important for the transition to a green economy,” said Forum coordinator Magdalena Charitanovic.
She explained that the so-called “electronic waste” consists of components of household appliances and equipment that are thrown into landfills after they have become morally obsolete. These wastes often contain large amounts of gold and other precious materials such as lithium and cobalt, whose reserves on Earth are very limited.
United Nations experts recently conducted a comprehensive analysis of the rapid growth of this waste in the countries of the former Soviet Union. Their calculations showed that the amounts of e-waste increased by 50 percent over the past ten years, knowing that only 3.2 percent of this waste is properly destroyed. Such behavior increases the burden on the environment and the economy in the world.
WEEE scientists recently conducted the first detailed study of the proportion of “e-waste” that falls on small devices, such as smartphones or other devices that are not difficult to dispose of, compared to other electronic devices, and often break down or are replaced when they become old.
Environmental scientists said that the correct treatment of all this garbage will replenish the world’s reserves of gold, lithium and many other precious metals by 5-7 percent, and will also protect nature from the accumulation of toxic cobalt compounds and many of the cancer-causing organic substances used in the manufacture of devices.