Mobile Phone Recycling

Help protect endangered chimpanzees, gorillas, and their habitat by using your existing mobile phone for longer and recycling it when it has reached the end of its useful life.

The forest is calling you!

Mobile phones contain minerals such as gold, cobalt, tungsten, tin, and coltan. Mining for these minerals in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo drives illegal bushmeat hunting, destroys crucial chimpanzee and gorilla habitat, contributes to global greenhouse gas emissions, and has funded long-running human conflict.

By the end of 2019 it's expected there will be more 5 billion mobile phone users worldwide. With an average lifetime of 18 - 36 months before upgrade or replacement, this number will only continue to grow. Global mobile phone sales are predicted to reach 5 million units per day by 2023.

However, up to 99% of materials can be recovered when mobile devices are recycled.

What is the solution?

Recycling old and unwanted devices can both reduce the need for new minerals to be mined and help raise funds to support JGI’s work to protect endangered chimpanzees and gorillas in EDRC.

In addition to recycling old and unwanted devices, buying a secondhand device or extending your phone's lifespan beyond the average of 18 - 36 months will also help reduce the pressure of mining on ape populations.

What can you do?

On December 15th, 2019 JGI offices around the world will be coming together to celebrate our International Mobile Recycling Day. You can get involved by pledging to keep your device for longer or recycle it between November 22nd, 2019 and January 15th, 2020.

All phones donated will be data wiped and either refurbished and resold by PhoneCycle or dismantled and recycled MobileMuster. These organisations will then donate the money raised to JGIA to support JGI's conservation programs in EDRC.

Will You Answer the Call?

Pledge to keep your recycle your device

Recycling your unwanted phones, tablets, and associated accessories can both reduce the need for mining in crucial great ape habitat and help raise funds to support our work to protect chimpanzees and gorillas.

Pledge to keep your device longer

Extending your phone's lifespan beyond the 18 - 36 month average will help minimise the pressure of mining on ape populations and lessen its ecological footprint.

Resources to help you get started

Download our resource kit for information on setting up your collection station, how to run a successful collection drive, and additional educational resources.

The collective action of all of us using our mobile devices for longer and recycling them when they have reached the end of their useful life will have a greater impact on reducing the amount of waste being produced and the amount of new mineral ore that needs to be mined. Keeping these minerals in the ground will help protect endangered great apes and their habitats.

Contact for questions about our campaign.