Vodafone and WWF partner for phone recycling drive


The pair’s “one million phones for the planet” initiative is designed to encourage customers to trade in their old devices and support the circular economy

This week, Vodafone has announced a new partnership with the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), initiating a new campaign to encourage smartphone reuse and recycling.

As part of the new three-year “one million phones for the planet” project, Vodafone will launch various strategic initiatives in its European and African markets to promote more sustainable choices by customers, as well as leverage mobile technology to tackle conservation and sustainability challenges.

The largest part of partnership, however, revolves around extending the lifecycle of customer smartphones.

Vodafone says it will offer competitive prices for customers to trade in old handsets, which will be refurbished and resold where possible.

According to Vodafone, purchasing a refurbished smartphone saves roughly 50kg of CO2e (Carbon Dioxide Equivalent) and reduces its environmental impact by 87% compared to a newly manufactured device.

Beyond reuse and refurbish approaches, Vodafone is also rolling out a suite of phone repair services, hoping to extend the lifespan of existing devices.

Phones that cannot be resold will be recycled or repurposed for social or charitable causes.

From today, for each phone traded in to Vodafone during the three-year programme, the operator will donate £1 to WWF conservation projects.

“Every one of us has a role to play in helping to bring our world back to life, and the technology we use every day can play a major role in tackling the climate and nature emergency,” said Tanya Steele, Chief Executive of WWF-UK. “Through our partnership with Vodafone, we will be exploring how everyone can reduce their environmental footprint using digital technologies and services, while also using mobile technology to drive forward key WWF conservation projects around the world. We look forward to working together on our shared vision for the planet.”

The new project will run alongside similar device campaigns Vodafone already has underway in Germany and the UK.

Are operators doing enough in the battle to combat climate change? Join the operators in discussion at the upcoming Connected North conference in Manchester

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