Lyndar the Merciless

a personal beauty + lifestyle blog

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Recycle yer auld bricks!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007   |   5 comments

I caught a bit of an episode of Channel 4 reality show "Dumped" on the tellybox one night last week. It's over now, but the premise of the show was an interesting one, with contestants challenged to live on a landfill site outsite Croydon & survive by using only the things other people have thrown away. [Participants weren't told the exact details of the show; although they new it was an "eco-challenge", they thought that they were off somewhere exoctic. Mwah hah haaaaaaaah.]

What I saw of the programme was actually quite a disappointment, with only a couple of the contestants making any real attempt to get into the spirit of the challenge. As Ian from Cork set about constructing a more permanent & sanitary accomodation alternative to the makeshift tarpaulin tent the 10 participants had been sleeping in up to that point, footballer/professional d*ckwad Jermaine, bimbo Sasha & "is-that-a-boy-or-a-girl?" Aaron took a leisurely breakfast before embarking on a hectic day of sunbathing & sleeping.

While I was furious at their apathetic sloth, I could sort of see where these slackers were coming from. There was no system of evictions or of voting competitors off; anyone who stayed on the landfill for the three week duration of the programme would receive an equal share of the £20,000 prize money - regardless of how they performed throughout the show.

Anyways, while Channel 4 was getting on with what it does best [reality TV show personality clashes, oooooooh], I was busy being horrified by the statistic that 1,000 mobile phones are discarded in the UK every 30 minutes. With mobiles seen by most consumers as more of a fashion item than a sophisticated piece of telecommunications equipment, it's no surprise that people are constantly upgrading their phones [the average user changes theirs every 18 months]. Now I have no problem with that, who wouldn't want the best phone they can get? But for the love of Banoffi, people, don't send your old brick to landfill! Most mobiles contain cadmium, a dangerous and highly toxic substance. Once dumped in landfill sites, the phone casing corrodes and the cadmium leeches out into the soil. Not good. Here are just 5 easy peasy ways to recycle your old phonóg:

1. Flog it on fleaBay & earn a few sheckles: This is probably the best option for your pocket but maybe not for your conscience [what if the next user just dumps it when they're done with it?] or your soul [doesn't help any charidees]. Still beats tossing it in the bin or leaving it in a drawer to become completely obsolete & no use to anyone, though.

2. Sell it to Envirofone & help save your soul: This crowd will buy your skanky old phone off you in return for cold hard cash or credit on an Argos eCard and they'll make a donation to the Irish Hospice Foundation on your behalf. You enter your details online, they send out a pre-paid envelope, you post off your phone, they send your payment. Bada-bing. They can also recycle or re-use all the accessories, chargers, manuals & packaging that came with your mobile, just stick them in the envelope with your mobile when you send it in. Phones are re-used wherever possible in areas around the world which need them: these are usually areas with a poor landline infrastructure which creates a demand for the type of mobile technology some of us would class as obsolete. If they find that your phone can't be re-used, they guarantee to recycle it in an appropriate & environmentally safe manner.

3. Sell it to Folamh (soul-saving optional): They'll arrange & pay for the collection of your decrepit phone & then pay you for it. Alternatively, you can choose to have the proceeds of the sale of your mobile donated to the Jack & Jill Foundation or other charity of your choice.

4. Donate directly to Charidee via The Recycling Appeal: These lads re-use or recycle mobiles, PDAs & printer cartridges on behalf of various Irish partner organisations & charities including MS Ireland & Temple Street Children's Hospital. You donate your phone via Freepost to the Recyling Appeal on behalf of your chosen charity who then receive a percentage of the value of the item - each mobile donated raises an average of €8 for charity.

5. Get flowers for your fone with Vodafone: Deposit your elderly mobile & charger in a designated recycling container at your nearest participating Vodafone outlet. Where possible, they will be made available for re-use in countries that wouldn't usually have access to mobile phones; all others will be carefully broken down and recycled and the batteries will be disposed of in an environmentally safe way. You'll receive a seed mat filled with Irish wild flower seeds in recognition of your contribution & proceeds raised will be donated to the Vodafone & Conservation Volunteers Ireland Nature Fund.

And if you're as lazy as the bone-idle articles on "Dumped", have a look around your place of work - chances are some conscientious type has already set up a receptacle into which you can stealthily toss your now hideously uncool phone to be recycled.

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  • At 12:02 pm, September 14, 2007, Anonymous deisegirl said…

    Hey the seed mat is a good idea! :)

  • At 12:23 pm, September 14, 2007, Blogger Lyndar said…

    Yeh tis a nice thought isn't it? Think I should get a few & have me a wildflower garden, it'd have to be better than the patch of muck I'm looking out at at the minute!

  • At 4:03 pm, September 21, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Another brilliant way to get rid of your old phone is sned it off to the Jack and Jill foundation. They take old mobile phones and repair them or dump them properly and any cahs they receive helps fudn teh good work they do. They provide respite care for babies born with severe mental disabilities. Really worthwhile cause. they do some brilliant work.

  • At 4:04 pm, September 21, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Should really read the post before submitting it - apologies for all spelling mistakes!

  • At 11:31 am, May 01, 2008, Blogger lucy said…

    The big issue with using the envirofone mobile site for recycling is that you can usually get more from ebay for your old phone.


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