This year was the 50th anniversary of Earth Day. The 17th October was International Repair Day.
This part of the 'Unbroken' project started on Earth Day, a day to celebrate and support environmental protection. The project looks at Impact. The consequences of our technology.
For the past few years, as I have been working on Unbroken, about reuse and repair and its importance to help create a more sustainable world. The focus has primarily on people and groups providing solutions, the repairers and activists helping to improve things. Restricted by the covid-19 lockdown and as a diversion, this series of images, looks at the upstream impact.
We create 50 million tonnes of e-waste each year, but have no real appreciation of the environmental impact upstream, in the processes used to make all those devices we eventually throw away. So, lets see:
- Your typical ‘smart’ phone weighs around 160 grams. It contains lots of components, made of different materials.
- The components are produced with many different materials that are processed from ores that are mined.
- So, that 160 gram phone requires about 30kg (30,000 grams) of the earth to be mined to make its components.
- When the mined ores are processed it creates around 85kg (85,000 grams) of solid and liquid waste.
- That’s 99.8% waste before that phone has even been used. And that processing uses lots of energy, over 100 kg of CO2 equivalent.
- To compensate for that would need around 10-15 trees to be planted.
- That looks like over 20 house brick sand 40 litres of toxic waste ... (see below)
- That’s for just one phone, and before you’ve even opened the box.
- Something to think about??
Keep your phone. Look after it. Repair it. Make it last longer. Help save the planet.