iPhones and Environmental Issues

By Lindsey Bolton

Why are iPhones bad?

Most people think iPhones can't be recycled, so they just throw them away. About 3.16 million tons of electronics are thrown away each year, with iPhones taking up about half of that. When iPhones are thrown away, they release a toxic chemical from a plastic called "phthalate" that is a synthetic petroleum banned from Europe, because of it's high toxin levels.

What Should They Do?

Apple should use soy oil, a cleaner plastic, for their iPhones, instead of phthalate.

Why Soy Oil?

Soy oil is a lot easier to get than phthalate, which you have to make out of a bunch of different chemicals. Soy oil is safer for the environment than regular plastic, also. People are starting to use it more, like in car seats, steering wheels, even some phone companies are starting to use soy oil instead!

Why Should They Start Doing This?

Phthalate is a synthetic petroleum, and petroleum is a nonrenewable source as it is. Soy oil is renewable and recyclable. Also, there are no toxins in it at all. Phthalate is used in some kids toys, and that's why its been banned in Europe. If kids can't have it, then why should our earth have it?

What are Some Other Raw Materials?

The iPhone uses a lot of different materials like phthalate, glass, plastic, neodymium, europium, cerium, copper, zinc, and a lot more things. Glass is one of the only things easy to get and easy to recycle and renew. All the other things you either have to make dig up.

Activists

Greenpeace is probably the most upset of how iPhones are being thrown away. In the past, they have verbally attacked Steve Jobs and have protested about remaking iPhones so they won't pollute our air.

Government

Kids toys with phthalate plasticisers have been banned in many more countries, but not the U.S., and the government isn't doing anything to stop them.

Bibliography

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"TRI Laws and Regulatory Activities." EPA. Environmental Protection Agency, 23 Nov. 2015. Web. 08 Dec. 2015.




"Recycling Program for IPod and Mobile Phones - Apple." Recycling Program for IPod and Mobile Phones - Apple. Web. 10 Dec. 2015.


"Causes International." E-Waste Facts. Causes International, 2014. Web. 10 Dec. 2015.