Samsung Wants to Dispose Of All Galaxy Note 7 Units – Environmental Impact Expected to Be Huge if Proper Steps Aren’t Taken

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Oct 13, 2016
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Now that Galaxy Note 7 is no longer going to be produced, Samsung is set to the task to place its stock in Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge till a worthy successor is announced in 2017. Unfortunately, disposing of the defected phablet isn’t going to be a cakewalk for the company, and it can adversely affect the environment as well.

Smartphone Recycling Is Not Done in a Responsible Manner – Samsung Has Stated It Will Use the Safest Approach to Dispose Its Galaxy Note 7

One Samsung spokesperson has stated the following regarding the company’s approach to dispose of its Galaxy Note 7:

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“We have a process in place to safely dispose of the phones.”

One of the primary reasons why a Galaxy Note 7 is most likely not going to be recycled is because the end result will end up delivering more harm than good. After thoroughly reading through a comprehensive report from Motherboard, I have come to realize that smartphones are not recycled even several years after they’ve been announced and instead, are refurbished and sold once more in developing regions for a cheaper price tag. Due to the volatile nature of Galaxy Note 7, Samsung cannot sell refurbished Note 7 devices, and recycling cannot be undertaken because the recovered items hardly equal a few dollars.

In fact, it would be more prudent and profitable if a smartphone is running for a longer period of time than be broken down and have its components used for something else. According to the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, it is estimated that it takes roughly 165 pounds of raw mined materials to make the average cell phone. For Galaxy Note 7’s case, that number is going to be higher because it is a phablet, and was regarded as one of the most advanced phones that one could lay their eyes upon. The resources that are generally lost are the ones that are extremely rare, environmentally destructive and labor-intensive to mine.

Alex King, the director of the Department of Energy’s Critical Materials Institute at the Ames Laboratory, states that there might be a silver lining in actually recycling a smartphone, but only just:

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“End-of-life phones travel long distances and trickle in over a long period of time, making it hard to keep the collection costs down and reap any kind of benefit in the processing from economies of scale. Paradoxically, recycling a whole generation of phones all at once may actually help us to overcome those barriers.”

As I write this, I cannot imagine how much trouble Samsung could have saved itself if it had it managed to make the battery of Galaxy Note 7 removable. Samsung is regarded as having better practices when it comes to protecting the environment, but neither the company nor its representatives have told us and everyone in detail what sort of responsible measure they would take to safely dispose of its Galaxy Note 7.

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