Mobile Devices and the Environment: a Toxic Relationship [Infographic]

Right now, I’m typing on my laptop while my smartphone sits about a foot away. I don’t have a tablet, but an awful lot of people do. Mobile devices like these make living and working online incredibly convenient; in the developing world, they make communication and economic growth possible in ways that didn’t exist twenty years ago. But all of this progress comes at a price: our phones and computers are full of toxic materials, and despite the relative ease of recycling such devices, most of them still end up in landfills.

How many? According to our friends at eCycle Best, 140 million phones go to landfills each year. That’s an awful lot of toxic materials getting buried (and possibly leaching into the soil). For the full details on our potentially toxic relationship with our phone, tablet, and/or laptop, check out the infographic below. And, of course, share your thoughts with us…

Need a larger version of this graphic? Click on it…

mobile devices recycling infographic


Infographic courtesy of eCycle Best

About the Author

Jeff McIntire-Strasburg is the founder and editor of sustainablog. You can keep up with all of his writing at Facebook, and at