UK Bins 17 Million Gadgets Worth £762 Million a Year

Figures revealed today show that more than 17 million mobile phones, music players, satnavs and other devices are sent straight to landfill every year.

The value of these dumped gadgets totals £762 million and one in three adults who throw away one of the items would have received an average of £43.54 had they taken it to a recycling centre, according to mobile phone provider O2.

Despite containing harmful materials including lead and cadmium, it is not illegal to dump electrical equipment in a landfill.

The number of dumped unwanted gadgets comes as a surprise to many thanks to the plethora of companies competing to offer 'recycle for cash' services. Supermarkets including Sainsbury's, Tesco and Asda as well as Boots and Royal Mail are among the companies that offer cash for used goods in reasonable conditions.

In addition to companies offering this 'add-on' service, there is a vast range of dedicated companies for recycling mobiles phones - like Mazuma and Eazyfone - who are well-known for their recycling incentives including cash or high-street vouchers.

Jonathan Porritt, founder and chairman of Forum for the Future, a charity dedicated to sustainable business, added: "In such difficult times, with austerity the order of the day, sustainability keeps on delivering real benefits for customers, communities and shareholders."

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