The unique prototype took 240 hours to create from tens of thousands of freeze-dried grass blades which were pulped and molded into a template. An eco-friendly resin made from waste materials then hardened and bonded the grass together to protect the working parts of the phone.

O2 Recycle created the phone to mark the launch of its ‘Recycle for Rugby’ initiative which supports the Rugby Football Union’s new social responsibility programme Try for Change.

Showcasing Old Tech

With estimates of between 28-125 million phones languishing unused in the UK, O2 hopes the prototype phone will encourage people to recycle their old gadgets in return for a cash payment, while also helping to raise £350,000 O2 has pledged to the Try for Change programme. The phone showcases how old tech has the exciting potential to be up-cycled into something new, original and unique, and to inspire more people to recycle their old devices.

“We wanted to give the ‘old and forgotten’ a new lease of life and create a thought provoking prototype which would make people stop and think about recycling in a new and different way,” said Sean Miles – who collaborated with O2 to design the phone. 

“The phone itself is incredibly striking and those who use it can pick out every blade of grass and imagine the incredible rugby games which have been played over them.”

Electronic Waste

O2 Recycle – which has handled 1.4 million devices since its launch in 2009 – repurposes nine out of ten gadgets to reduce their environmental impact. It offers cash payments of up to £260 for gadgets; including mobile phones, tablets, MP3 players, handheld consoles, digital cameras and SatNavs.

Earlier this month the Government allocated £600,000 to help develop Britain’s first ‘plasma facility’ which will recover gold, silver and platinum from electronic waste.

Recovering value for electronic waste has been a hot-button topic in the last month, with the Green Alliance detailing six ways in which manufacturers could reduce the vast environmental footprint of consumer electronics.

edie has also provided a round-up of 10 fascinating facts about e-waste.

Lucinda Dann

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