Mobile Phone Recycling for the Wildlife in Africa
Forests in Central Africa, particularly the Democratic Republic of Congo, are at risk of deforestation due to mining for a mineral used in mobile phones.
- Mobile phones contain precious materials such as coltan, which are often mined illegally even within protected areas that provide a home for a range of endangered species.
- As the world’s demand for mobile phones and thus these minerals increases, there is little regard for the detrimental effect extensive mining and the destruction that coms with it has on the environment and wildlife.
- It is estimated that up to 80% of the world’s coltan reserves are found in biodiversity-rich areas in the Democratic Republic of Congo – a country that is also home to several species of great apes including the gorilla, chimpanzee and bonobo.
- According to experts, the population size of all the great apes has been decreasing in the wild, gradually pushing these unique species closer to the brink of extinction.
- Most parts of consumer electronics can be recycled, including the minerals. Reusing these materials reduces the pressure on natural resources and wildlife in source countries. What’s more, keeping the plastic and hazardous substances (e.g. lead and mercury) mobile devices contain out of landfill reduces the impact on the environment right here in our own backyards.
What are we doing here at Twycross Zoo?
Twycross Zoo has partnered with Genuine Solutions to offer our staff and visitors a permanent mobile phone recycling scheme, here at the zoo.
It is estimated that 51% of UK households have unused electronic devices, and 4.7 million Brits admittedly put their old phone in general waste. Here at Twycross Zoo we can help our visitors dispose of their old phones responsibly, hereby contributing to a more environmentally conscious culture and reducing our negative impact on the environment.
What can you do?
- Hand in your old mobile phones for recycling here at the zoo, in Guest Services. If you don’t want to come into the actual zoo itself, please talk to a member of staff in the Himalaya Gift Shop, who will be happy to help.
- Phones can be sent to us through the post to: Guest Services, Twycross Zoo, Burton Road, Atherstone, CV9 3PX.
- Please make sure that you remove the password and all personal data (including the SIM card), and reset the phone to factory settings before you donate your phone. Twycross Zoo ensures the highest standards during the recycling of phones, but is not responsible for any personal data left on the donated devices.