'Hello? Yes, this is Earth speaking'
Environmentally conscious entrepreneurs around the world are all trying to making eco-friendly alternatives for everything from yoga pants to coffee machines. But what about the most used gadget in the world? You know what we’re talking about, the little device that controls our movements and attention 90% of the time. Yes, it’s the mobile phone.
Well, now there’s the Fairphone.
It’s pretty fair, but not 100% according to the people behind Fairphone. This is mostly because of continuous room for improvement and differences in definitions. Currently, because of difficulties in mining regions and with international trade, the fairphone still have a bit of work left to do. Their mission to create a 100% ‘fair phone’ is going well, but a more immediate target is to improve the environmental standard for mobile phone development while having a massive positive social impact.
Check out some of the areas targeted to make the mobile phone development process more ethical:
'We want to source materials that support local economies, not armed militias. We’re starting with conflict-free minerals from the DR Congo.'
'We’re focusing on longevity and repairability to extend the phone’s usable life and give buyers more control over their products.'
'Factory workers deserve safe conditions, fair wages and worker representation. We’re working closely with manufacturers that want to invest in employee wellbeing.'
'We’re addressing the full lifespan of mobile phones, including use, reuse and safe recycling.'
We’re working to create a new economy with a focus on social values. By operating transparently and sharing the Fairphone story, we’re helping consumers make informed decisions about what they buy.
Here are some numbers for you to crunch:
Fairphone was born out of good
This is the story of Fairphone, in their own words: “Fairphone started in 2010 as a project of Waag Society, Action Aid and Schrijf-Schrijf to raise awareness about conflict minerals in consumer electronics and the wars that the mining of these minerals is fueling in the DR Congo. The campaign and related research ran for three years. In 2013, Fairphone was officially established as a social enterprise to help us expand the reach of our goals. By creating a smartphone, we are using commercial strategies to maximize our social impact at every stage of the value chain, from sourcing and production to distribution and recycling.”
Would you consider upgrading your gadget for a fairer model? The next batch of Fairphones are in production and will be ready later in 2015.