Estimates state that close to 90 million phones are hiding in drawers and cupboards across the UK (11250 tonnes) - these weigh almost six times as much as the London Eye!
Mobile phones contain numerous substances which need to be disposed of in safe and efficient manner:
The Cadmium in the battery from a single old phone could seriously contaminate 600,000 litres of water, enough to fill a third of an Olympic-sized swimming pool. Cadmium is being phased out of new batteries.
Lead - which affects the immune, endocrine and central nervous systems, and causes serious damage to children's brains - is used to solder components to the printed wiring boards.
Brominated flame retardants, used in wiring boards and plastic cases, have been associated with cancer, liver damage and problems with the neurological, immune and endocrine systems.
Beryllium, which can cause serious lung damage, is used in contacts and springs and highly toxic dioxins can be emitted if the phones are incinerated in waste plants.