Where Can You Recycle Cellphones? Everywhere.

Cell phone Recycling cell phones is one of the easiest ways you can protect the planet.

• Leave it behind when you buy a new phone. Sprint, Verizon,T-Mobile, AT&T, Nokia, and Motorola all participate in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s “Plug in to e-cycling” program and will accept any cell phone or PDA at any of their retail outlets.

• Take it to Wal-Mart, Best Buy, Staples, Office Depot, or Radio Shack. Most outlets will have a box you can drop your phone in with absolutely no hassle.

*  Send it to Collective Good, a company that refurbishes the phones, re-sells them, and shares the profits with the charity of your choice. Address:

Collective Good International
Include Charity Code
Boulder, CO 80303-1350

Why bother? Every week, 3 million cell phones are thrown away. More than 1 billion used mobile phones clutter our shelves, take up space in our drawers or worse – are decaying in landfills.

Cell phones are constructed with a host of heavy metals – like antimony, arsenic, beryllium, cadmium, copper, lead, mercury, nickel and zinc – that can pollute ground water and potentially cause cancer. Recovering those metals for re-use keeps them out of the environment and makes them available for reuse in other electronics manufacturing.

Have an APPLE I-Phone or IPOD you need to unload?   Apple’s Recycling Program provides prepaid mailing label you can download from the company website.

Recycle used phone batteries, too. The Rechargeable Battery Recycling Coalition links to 50,000 locations, including Target, Lowe's Home Depot and Office Max. 

Want more ways to recycle your phone? Here are 50, courtesy of VOIP.

Research by Rachel Goglia

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16 Responses to Where Can You Recycle Cellphones? Everywhere.

  1. Aaron June 25, 2009 at 7:01 am #

    Good to see people interested in helping others find ways to get rid of electronic waste. Remember that we need to recycle computer parts (monitors, CPUs, etc.) and fluorescent lamps too. Check out my blog at blog.lamprecycling.com for more news and updates about these areas.

  2. Green Fundraising Ideas June 25, 2009 at 6:19 pm #

    This is great info for EVERYONE! It seems most people have 2-3 phones just sittin’ around…

  3. Diane MacEachern June 30, 2009 at 1:40 am #

    I’m glad you found this so helpful!

  4. Joost Hoogstrate June 29, 2009 at 10:44 pm #

    Hi Diane, your post about recycling cell phones was really something. We hardly knew what to do with our old phones when we got new ones. As you said, they were unnecessarily cluttering space or decaying in some corner. Now we know that we can act responsibly and hand over our cell phones to these organizations that can refurbish them and use them all over again. You may also refer http://climatarians.org to find more about this and related topics.
    Great revelation
    Joost Hoogstrate

  5. Bianca July 8, 2009 at 1:04 am #

    I usually just keep my phones because I don’t know what to do with them and they cost too much money to just throw away, but this is a good alternative to just holding on to something I’m not going to use anymore. I hope that more people start to recycle their phones because I know a lot of my friends either hold on to them or throw them in the trash. It’s also good that it is convenient for people to recycle them because people like convenience and it would be more motivation for them to recycle the phones.

  6. Cellphones4us June 22, 2010 at 12:20 am #

    recycling cell phones is the one of the easiest way to protect the planet, in these days doing that process to protect the planet, so guys if u want to through a cell phone, just to that type of company.

  7. Smartphone August 30, 2010 at 10:55 pm #

    Recycling cell phones is one of the easiest ways you can protect the planet.

  8. Tadalis October 18, 2010 at 3:55 am #

    Yes, Recycling cell phones is one of the easiest ways you can protect the planet. Surveys suggest that less than 10% of U.S. consumers dispose of their old cell phones either by selling them or through other recycling methods. This leaves more than 11 million cell phones to pile up every month in the homes of America.

  9. Recycle Mobile Phones January 27, 2011 at 3:17 am #

    I think we’re all a bit guilty of hoarding old mobile phones, I know I have a few tucked away in a drawer. I know I’m not going to use them again but I’ve just been too lazy to recycle them. However, when it comes round to a spring cleaning I’ll definitely try to recycle them. Throwing them in the bin would be the easier option but it’s also the most harmful one and for that reason people should never do it.

  10. Laura, Adult Tricycle May 22, 2011 at 2:07 am #

    Not only is it better for the environment, it really helps out developing countries if you recycle your phone (most end up in developing co.s).

  11. Find phone recyclers August 23, 2011 at 9:06 pm #

    I agree recycling your old mobile phone or any gadgets is a great way to help save our environment from the toxic waste this gadgets could produce.

  12. sell my mobile November 17, 2011 at 4:49 am #

    In today’s world, where a new phone is launched almost every alternate day, we must take recycling seriously and not just a way to make money frm. old goods. Join recycling campaign, save the environment and save the planet!!

    • asasdf April 12, 2017 at 7:37 am #

      Nice post.

      • Diane April 19, 2017 at 8:22 am #

        Thank you.

  13. sams ss September 15, 2017 at 3:53 am #

    Good work.

    • Diane October 3, 2017 at 6:10 pm #


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