Mobile phones less toxic, research finds
04 October 2012, 10:48
Washington - Mobile phone manufacturers, responding to consumer and
regulatory pressure, are using fewer toxic substances in their products,
researchers in the US said.
The Motorola Citrus, Apple iPhone 4S
and LE Remarq emerged as the least toxic cellphones in a study of 36
different models that have come onto the market during the past five
years, the Michigan-based Ecology Centre said.
The newly released
iPhone 5 ranked fifth, and its arch rival Samsung Galaxy S III ninth,
while the iPhone 2G - the first in the top-selling smartphone series,
released in 2007 - was found to contain the most toxic materials.
takeaway is that mobile phones are chemically intensive, and full of
chemical hazards, but they've been getting a lot better," Jeff Gearhart,
research director at the Ecology Centre, said in a telephone interview.
a statement, the Ecology Centre explained that "every phone sampled in
this study contained at least one of following hazardous chemicals:
Lead, bromine, chlorine, mercury and cadmium".
substances can pollute at any stage of a product's life cycle, from the
moment they are extracted from the ground to the time a cellphone is
assembled and the day it is thrown out, it said.
interest in healthier products is driving companies to design and
produce healthier products," said Gearhart, who also cited tougher
controls in Europe and Asia over the hazardous materials used in
The Ecology Centre - which posted its
findings on its HealthyStuff.org website - has previously looked into
the extent of toxins in automobiles, children's car seats, jewellery,
garden hoses and Halloween products.