The mobile giant launches the scheme charting the carbon footprint of phones today (August 25) on its website and in stores.

However, the scheme only covers phones supplied by O2 and does not include the market leading iPhone as Apple has opted not to join the scheme.

But every other phone sold by the firm, apart from those by RIM which will be included at a later date, is assessed by the scheme which rates the Sony Ericsson Elm top of the pile.

O2’s general manager UK and group devices, Steve Alder, explained the rating of 65 mobile phones from six companies was 15 months of hard work.

He told “Environmental impact is increasingly becoming a factor for consumers when buying mobile phones.

“Our research shows 44% of customers see it something they’d consider and we can only see that growing.

“The plan is for this to become an industry standard, we will be making all the information available as open source.”

Companies taking part in the scheme are Nokia, Sony Ericsson, HTC, LG, Samsung and Palm, which represent 93% of the phones O2 offer.

The scheme, which rates phones on a 0 to 5 scale, has been developed in partnership with independent sustainability experts Forum for the Future.

Forum for the Future’s principal sustainability advisor, Dr James Taplin, explained: “Environmental credentials are overly complicated not just for consumers but also for some manufactures.

“With the new scheme we’re making very open and very simple.”

The scheme takes into account factors like the makers corporate responsibility and sustainability across the entire firm.

It also looks at device specific information such as materials used in construction, packaging and the phones life, which on average is about 24 months the length of an average contract.

It also looks at functionality if the phone replaces the need for the other software and hardware.

To find out more click here to see the full ratings.

Luke Walsh

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