Coolafone: Recycling Cell Phones for Personal or Planetary Reward
Online Phone Recycling Service Offers Rewards and Raises Funds
Upgraded your cell phone recently? It sometimes seems like half the world is sporting a newer, shinier and more complicated phone every week. While holding on to our purchases for as long as possible is an important part of sustainability, the chances are that we are going to see significant quantities of discarded phones for some time to come. Recycling old cell phones is a topic that's created much debate over in our forums, and now we've been alerted to a service that not only helps you recycle your phone, but you can even earn rewards for yourself or the planet in the process.
Much like Envirofone, which Bonnie wrote about back in 2006, Coolafone is an online service that allows you to trade phones for credits. These credits can then either be used to purchase goods through Collafone's online shops, which sell everything from music to tickets to fashion items, or, and this is where my little TreeHugging ears pricked up, they can be donated to one of Coolafone's partner charities working for conservation, renewable energy, and water projects in the developing world. (Go on, choose the second option...)
As an aside, Coolafone is a project of Coolaworld — a concept which I once trashed for its former "shop and save the planet" tagline (which has since been abandoned). Founder Richard Kilgriff contacted me to talk some more about his projects, and while I stand by my previous assertion that shopping alone can't save us, the fact that [according to the Coolafone website] Richard has already managed to raise UK£1million for Solar Aid - a charity that is very close to TreeHugger's heart - suggests that Richard is the kind of guy who gets things done. So congratulations Richard, and don't ever let us grouchy bloggers discourage you from saving the world by whatever means necessary.