Reducing E-Waste and Promoting Sustainability Through Electron® Phone Charging Stations
As technology advances, our reliance on electronic devices like smartphones has increased. With this increase in usage comes a need for a convenient and reliable way to charge these devices. Unfortunately, charging cables and power banks contribute to the accumulation of e-waste when they are no longer needed or used.
E-waste is a significant environmental issue that is often overlooked. According to the United Nations, e-waste is the fastest-growing waste stream in the world, with a projected increase of 21% from 2019 to 2030. This waste can contain hazardous materials. They can leak into soil and water sources, contaminating the environment and posing a risk to human health.
Globally, 54,000 metric tons of chargers are wasted each year, and that's about 0.1% of the total 53.6 million metric tons of e-waste generated annually, according to the 2020 Global E-Waste Monitor.
The used charging cables produced in a year would wrap around the earth approximately 1.3 times if they were laid end to end!
E-waste also has economic implications. The resources used to create these products, including metals and plastics, are finite and valuable. By not properly disposing of e-waste, we are squandering these resources and contributing to the depletion of the planet's natural capital.
The problem with chargers has gotten so bad that the European Union mandated that all devices must use the USB-C charging standard by 2025. Companies like Apple will have to follow this mandate to unify the standard and make the recycling process more efficient.
Environmental consequences of existing solutions
Phone charging cables are made from plastic, which is derived from fossil fuels and is not biodegradable. In addition, some cords contain toxic substances such as lead. This can be harmful if released into the environment. Shipping and packaging can have negative environmental consequences as well. Such as transportation emissions and waste from packaging materials.
Power Bank is a portable charger designed to recharge your electronic devices when you're on the go. However, they can contribute to e-waste and have negative environmental consequences due to hazardous materials, such as lithium-ion batteries containing cobalt, nickel, and copper, that can leak into the environment if not disposed of properly. The production of power banks also has environmental consequences due to the mining of minerals like lithium and cobalt, which can cause habitat destruction and release greenhouse gases. Proper disposal of power banks through recycling can reduce the need for mining and minimize their environmental impact.
Wireless charging can be less efficient than traditional wired charging. It may require more energy to charge a device wirelessly. More energy may be required to charge a device wirelessly than a wired connection. One potential consequence of inefficient energy consumption in wireless chargers is increased greenhouse gas emissions. This could contribute to climate change and other environmental problems.
Electron® Sustainable Phone Charging Station
Our mission is to enable smart consumption by replacing charging accessories with sharable, recyclable portable battery chargers. These portable chargers are designed to be disassembled, so if any part breaks, we can replace it and reuse the rest. When the battery cell reaches the end of its life cycle, we can replace it and continue using the other parts.
Overlooked, but the not minor factor is the packaging and shipping of the cables. Every time you order a charger, it is shipped to you crossing the ocean from China inside the package that is inside the package. It is monumentally unnecessary waste. With shared Electron chargers, there is much less packaging and shipping waste.
Our chargers come with device management software:
1)To track battery cell cycles. To know exactly when they need to be replaced.
2)To balance the usage of the chargers evenly and efficiently
3)Performance reports allow us to control equipment utilization. It helps to ensure we don't overpopulate chargers, only installing as many as needed.
But Electron's commitment to sustainability doesn't stop there. We also have a program in place to properly dispose of our chargers when they reach the end of their life cycle. We partner with responsible e-waste recyclers to ensure the materials are properly processed and recycled.
In addition to the environmental and economic benefits, choosing our phone charger stations has other benefits. Using a charger designed to be disassembled and recycled, you can reduce clutter and improve the organization of your space.
As more and more people become aware of the impact of e-waste, it is important that we all do our part to reduce our own contribution to this growing problem. We tried to make a difference and be part of the solution by building Electron.
With Electron cell phone charging stations, you can confidently charge your devices, knowing that you are also doing your part to reduce e-waste and advance sustainability. By choosing a sustainable charging solution, we can help to preserve valuable resources and protect the environment.
*It is worth noting that this calculation is based on the assumptions that all chargers produced in a year are used charging cables and that they are all 1 meter in length and weigh 40g. If these assumptions are inaccurate, the actual length and number of times the cables would wrap around the earth would be different.