Nokia to plant sapling for every old handset returned

December 31st, 2008 - 9:06 pm ICT by IANS  

Bangalore, Dec 31 (IANS) Global telecom major Nokia India will plant a sapling for every old mobile handset or accessory deposited with its dealers or customer care centres in this tech hub from Jan 1, the company said Wednesday. “We want to educate mobile users on the importance of recycling e-waste. The ‘take back’ campaign will be rolled out across the country in phases, beginning from Bangalore Thursday,” Nokia India managing director D. Shivakumar said in a statement.

Users can drop handsets of any brand and devices such as chargers of any make in the recycling bins at Nokia centres. The company will plant a sapling for every handset returned to spread greenery and protect ecology.

As the world’s fastest-growing mobile market, India has the second largest subscriber base of 300 million and adds eight-nine million subscribers every month. With the introduction of 3G services soon, the number of old handsets is set to increase manifold when users go for the upgraded 3G versions.

A Nokia consumer survey across 13 countries, including India, says people on average have each owned at least four-five handsets, but few were recycled.

“Globally, half of those surveyed didn’t know phones could be recycled, with awareness lowest in India at 17 percent, while it is highest (80 percent) in Britain,” Shivakumar said.

“If every Nokia user recycled just one unused phone, the discarded phone will live on in something new, as the material is used to make items like park benches, utensils etc,” he added.

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