Clearing up the Olympic leftovers

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20 million soft drinks will be bought throughout the Olympics and The Paralympics. Envirofone.com look at the clean up operation and the after life of recycled products.

Envirofone
We have worked closely with LOCOG to ensure effective recycling is at the cornerstone of the Games. Our support started with our Recycle Beats campaign run throughout the Olympic Torch Relay, and continued with our recycling bins at every Olympic venue

•    20 million soft drinks will be bought throughout the Olympics and The Paralympics.

  •     Coca Cola aim to have every bottle collected from the Olympics recycled, reused and back on the shelf within 6 weeks to be resold!
  •     Mobile phones deprecate by £5 a month
  •     Est. 4 unused phones per UK household
  •     Loss for UK homes of £3 billion a year

20 million soft drinks will be bought throughout the Olympics and The Paralympics. That’s a lot of bottle and laid lid to base they would cover 30 marathon circuits, the 10,000 metre circuit 127 times or reach the peak of Mount Everest 270 times!

"I think we’d have noticed 270 Mount Everest’s in London, so what happens to them? Well you thought Bolt was quick; Coca Cola aim to have every bottle collected from the Olympics recycled, reused and back on the shelf within 6 weeks to be resold!"

Before the flame was even lit, Coca Cola’s recycling had kicked into action. Mobile phone recyclers Envirofone believe many of our everyday items could have a second life and spoke with Patrick McGuirk, European Recycling Director, at Coca Cola to find out more;

“…We have worked closely with LOCOG to ensure effective recycling is at the cornerstone of the Games. Our support started with our Recycle Beats campaign run throughout the Olympic Torch Relay, and continued with our recycling bins at every Olympic venue and the our commitment that we aim to have every PET bottle collected and back on the shelf as a new bottle within 6 weeks…our goal has been that we use the London Olympics as a catalyst to further improve recycling in the UK”.

Envirofone believe that we shouldn’t just be reusing our everyday waste. There will be over 20 million handsets upgraded in the UK alone this year and that number is set to grow year on year. So what happens to all the phones that are barely 18 months old?

Fay Shannon, Brand Manager at Envirofone answered, “More often than not they are slung in drawers to keep as spares. Never thought about until you upgrade the new one you’ve just got! The phone goes down in value, fast, by a fiver a month some reckon! Doesn’t sound that bad, but when you add in that there is an estimated 4 unused phones per UK household…you’re looking at a potential loss across the UK of £3 billion per year!

What’s worse, they are not exactly biodegradable. Phones aren’t like banana skins, they don’t eventually rot away! The usual road for an unused phone is drawer, to bin, to…landfill!

At Envirofone we receive thousands of phones a day and a whopping 98% of these handsets get reused. If they are unable to be reused then they are recycled with the metals and plastic used in anything from jewellery to traffic cones! So people really should consider giving their mobiles a second life.

Notes for Editors: The facts behind the sustainable London 2012: Waste from drinks:

It is estimated by Coca-Cola that approximately 20 million units of drinks will be bought throughout the Olympics and Paralympics. Based on the average dimensions of a standard sized drinks can, Envirofone have estimated the amount of landfill waste that we could have been facing, highlighting the importance of the recycling programme which is taking place:

Lined up side-to-side used cans would have stretched out -

  •     Almost 790 miles
  •     Or, the distance to Aberdeen from London...and back again!
  •     Or, 30 marathon circuits
  •     Or, going round the 10,000 metre circuit 127 times - too much even for our golden boy Mo Farah...

Stacked on top of one another used cans would rise to -

  •     1,483.59 miles high
  •     Or, the equivalent of 7,752 Shards - the tallest building in London
  •     Or, the equivalent of 1,776 (and a half) Ben Nevises - Britain's tallest mountain
  •     Or, the equivalent of reaching the peak of Mount Everest nearly 270 times...
  •     Or, 412,366 Pole Vaults at the new Olympic record height of 5.79 metres

The second life of recycled mobile phones:

How much would all the mobile phones of people at the Olympics venue weigh if sent to landfill sites?

  •     The weight of all the estimated number of mobiles at the Olympic venues combined comes to just over 430 metric tonnes (4)
  •     Or, fifty and a half African Elephants - the heaviest land animal on earth
  •     Or, 7,544 times the weight of the much more delicate Gold Medallist, Jessica Ennis

If we retrieved the precious metals from the mobile phones that have been in the Olympic venues so far we could collect a total of 66.09 metric tonnes of precious metals, including 64.5 metric tonnes of copper and 1.4 metric tonnes of silver. Imagine 72,634 lots of the Crown Jewels and you are getting close...

More facts about recycling projects and the latest mobile phone news can be found at http://blog.envirofone.com

About Envirofone

Of the UK mobile phone recyclers we’ve been at it the longest and since 2005 we’ve helped over 2 million happy customers get cash for their mobiles. We now recycle mobiles from Holland, Sweden and Republic of Ireland.

Web: http://www.envirofone.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Envirofone
Twitter: http://twitter.com/envirofoneuk
Twitter - News: http://twitter.com/envirofonenews

For media enquiries, please contact:
Fay Shannon, Brand Manager
Email: fay.shannon@eazyfone.com
Tel: 01625 665785

Envirofone
Guildford House
Heather Close
Lyme Green Business Park
Macclesfield
SK11 0LR

Notes for Editors - resources and references:

Coca-Cola
(1) About the Coca-Cola PET programme: http://www.thecoca-colacompany.com/dynamic/press_center/2012/06/pet-collaborative.html
(2) About the Coca-Cola London 2012 recycling programme: http://www.coca-cola.co.uk/environment/helping-london-recycle-for-the-2012-olympics.html
(3) Based on data from http://www.census.gov/population/international/
(4) Based on data collected on mobile phone recycling programmes in the USA collated in Recycled Cell Phones—A Treasure Trove of Valuable Metals: "About 130 million cell phones are retired annually in the United States (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 2005). Collectively, these cell phones weigh about 14,000 metric tons...annually retired cell phones contain almost 2,100 metric tons of copper, 46 metric tons of silver, 3.9 metric tons of gold, 2 metric tons of palladium, and 0.04 metric ton of platinum."

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