NEC's Kenaf and Bioplastic N701i Eco Phone

Tipster Lawrence O. rushed us a link he has just seen. Seems NEC have launched an Eco version of their N701i mobile phone. Apparently 70% of the plastic in the phone is made from a biodegradable plastic, derived from poly-lactic acid (PLA) of corn and potatoes, with extra reinforcing from the plant kenaf (a relative of hibiscus and okra). We've noted before that NEC have dabbled with such materials in some of their laptops. It’s suggested that compared to producing standard ABS plastics, this particular eco-plastic will generate half the greenhouse gas emissions. Another curious statistic is that growing kenaf is said to absorb 3 to 9 more CO2 than trees and shrubs. Now we hope we got these details right. Maybe they were a bit Lost in Translation, when we followed a series of crazy leads from Endgadget to Slashphone to K tie Watch and finally to a press release from Asian telcom ::NTT DoCoMo.