UK households could be sitting on a goldmine of unused technology, with almost 15 million mobile phones, more than 7 million old DVD players and 6 million unwanted TVs gathering dust.
A study of 2,000 adults found homes across the country acting as storage centers for old tech items because owners didn’t get around to sorting their belongings.
Thirty-nine percent of respondents currently have unused electronics in their homes, including 3.5 million discarded iPods, nearly 4.7 million unused headphones and 4.6 million vintage VCR players.
Reasons for holding on to outdated technology include keeping it as a backup in case their current item breaks (17 percent), hoping they can fix it (11 percent), and not knowing how to get rid of it (nine percent).
The research was commissioned by Virgin Media O2, which has partnered with environmental organization Hubbub to launch the Again and again E-waste fund for community groups and organizations to implement projects to combat e-waste and promote circularity.
It also showed that cell phones (23 percent), DVD players (16 percent), and televisions (13 percent) were the most common unused items.
Obsolete (15 percent), obsolete (14 percent) and broken or faulty items (12 percent) are among the reasons electronic devices are not used.
But these devices are typically kept for six years and stored in closets (30 percent), attics (25 percent), and garages (22 percent).
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Despite this, 31 percent say they are concerned about the impact e-waste is having on the planet, but 25 percent don’t know where the nearest e-waste collection point is.
Virgin Media O2’s Nicola Green said: “It’s amazing how much old, unused and obsolete equipment such as phones, VCRs and USB sticks are gathering dust in drawers, attics and garages across the country.
“We know people are concerned about their old technology ending up in landfill and the impact it is having on the planet.
“That’s why we’ve partnered with Hubbub to set up the £500,000 Time After Time fund to fund green projects that tackle e-waste and help old devices get used again.”
The study also found that 51 percent of adults feel that not enough is being done to address e-waste, while 21 percent feel guilty for not recycling old, unused electronic devices.
Almost four in ten (38 percent) have thrown an old or unused device into a landfill, and 32 percent have disposed of it with household waste.
While 28 percent plan to donate goods to charity and 24 percent hope to sell them when they get rid of their unused electronics.
But more than half (53 percent) still have personal information on unused electronic devices, including photos (52 percent), emails (40 percent), and work-related documents (26 percent).
And 44 percent don’t know how to delete such data from devices they no longer use.
As a result, 34 percent fear their personal information will be stolen or shared if they recycle a device.
It also found that respondents via OnePoll would be more likely to be encouraged to recycle technology if it were easier (46 percent), they knew where to take it (43 percent), and if they did so from home could (30 percent). Cent).
While 73 percent would help a local community group by recycling their old electronics if they could.
But 56 percent argued that there is not enough information on how to dispose of e-waste ethically.
Gavin Ellis, co-founder of Hubbub, said: “E-waste is a pressing environmental issue and we encourage organizations to apply for this funding with projects that remove barriers and help people extend the life of their old electronic devices by repairing them, giving them away or recycle.
“Organizations can apply for grants ranging from £10,000 to £75,000.
“We are urging people to publicize this funding, which could have a significant impact.
“If you know of a charity, social enterprise, local authority or community organization that is running e-waste initiatives, refer them to us to apply for this financial support.”
TOP 20 UNUSED ELECTRICAL APPLIANCES IN UK HOMES
1. Mobile phones – 14.701.968
2. DVD player – 7,114,752
3. TV – 6,142,032
4. USB sticks – 5,641,776
5. Radios – 4,724,640
6. Headphones – 4,669,056
7. Printer – 4,585,680
8. VCR player – 4,585,680
9.Laptop – 4,446,720
10. Microwaves – 4,446,720
11. iPod – 3,501,792
12. Cameras – 3,335,040
13. Stereo Player – 3,112,704
14. Landline Telephone – 3.112.704
15. Tablet/iPad – 2,918,160
16. Computer Keyboards – 2,834,784
17. Cassette Player/Portable CD Player – 2,723,616
18. Computer mouse – 2,779,200
19. Vacuum cleaner – 2,501,280
20. Computer monitors – 1,945,440
https://www.thesun.ie/tech/9752146/brits-have-15m-mobile-phones-lying-unused/ Brits have 15 million cell phones & 6 million TVs lying around unused in their homes – are you sitting on a gold mine too?