One of the things that’s so frustrating about mobile phones is the way they’re manufactured.
- They are manufactured to be disposable,
- They contain undocumented hazardous materials,
- They contain undocumented conflict minerals,
- The manufacturing processes themselves are hazardous,
- The manufacturing employees work in inhumane working conditions,
I’m taking a class on Organic Solar Cells on Coursera, and just finished a compelling section on Life-Cycle Analysis taught by Nieves Espinosa Martinez. Life-Cycle Analysis is a system for calculating the total environmental cost of a product, from materials acquisition to manufacturing to use to disposal.
Wouldn’t it be nice if all of the products that we owned came with a Life-Cycle Analysis? That way we could compare products not just on their cost to our pocketbook, but to our personal carbon footprint.
One of my goals for my DIY smartphone project is to make a sustainable product, something that I can create safely, use safely, upgrade, and finally recycle safely.