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Pablo Blazquez | Greenpeace

There’s more good news from the Samsung front: Apart from the much-anticipated release of its S8, the Korean tech giant also announced it will be recycling returned units of the unfortunate Galaxy Note 7.

In a statement posted in its website, Samsung shared the three principles that will “ensure that the Galaxy Note 7 devices are recycled and processed in an environmentally-friendly manner.”

They are:

  • Devices shall be considered to be used as refurbished phones or rental phones where applicable. According to Samsung, “applicability is dependent upon consultations with regulatory authorities and carriers as well as due consideration of local demand.”
  • Components that can be saved and recycled, such as semiconductors and camera modules, shall be detached for reuse. Samsung said that it will only partner with companies that specialize in detaching parts to do the work, as well as to test sample production purposes.
  • Processes such as metals extraction shall be performed using environmentally friendly methods. For left-over component recycling, Samsung shall first extract precious metals like copper, nickel, gold, and silver by utilizing eco-friendly companies specializing in such processes.”

This development comes as a welcome piece of news, especially for Greenpeace who is among the most persistent in prodding Samsung to consider recycling the returned Galaxy Note 7.

The environmental organization said in a statement that there are about 4.3 million units of Galaxy Note 7 devices that have been returned and had to be dealt with. Recycling them, of course, is the top-of-mind eco-solution. “This is a major win for everyone that took action, and a step towards shifting the way we produce and dispose of electronics,” said Jude Lee, Global Senior Campaigner at Greenpeace East Asia.

Adds Abigail Aguilar, Detox Campaigner for Greenpeace Philippines, “this is a very welcome move from Samsung, being one of the world’s leading smatphone companies. For them to accept every single Greenpeace demand to reuse the almost new components and those that have the highest environmental costs, push for efficient disassembly and more effective recovery systems, among others is a step in the right direction and is truly what we call true innovation.”

True innovation, indeed. Yay you, Samsung! Yay you, Greenpeace! Yay you mother earth!


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