RBRC announces nationwide cellphone collection and recycling program

Call2Recycle™ cellphone recycling program to be available at nationwide locations

ATLANTA, March 22, 2004 – The Rechargeable Battery Recycling Corporation (RBRC), a non-profit public service organization dedicated to recycling rechargeable batteries, today announced the rollout of Call2Recycle™, a nationwide cellphone collection and recycling program.

RBRC is encouraging consumers to help the environment, as well as worthwhile charitable organizations, simply by bringing in their old cellphones to be recycled. Cell phones collected through the Call2Recycle™ program will be recycled or refurbished and resold when possible by ReCellular, Inc., the world leader in refurbishing wireless equipment. The rechargeable batteries in the phones will be recycled through RBRC’s existing battery recycling channels.

A portion of the proceeds of the resold phones will go to select charities. In addition, ReCellular will offer its civic and charitable partners the convenience of dropping off phones at RBRC’s Call2Recycle™ locations across the nation.

Since 1994, RBRC has collected over 22 million pounds of rechargeable batteries – those found in a growing list of portable electronics products including cellphones as well as power tools, cordless phones, laptop computers, camcorders and remote control toys. A recent report by INFORM, Inc. estimates that by 2005, about 200 million cellphones will be in use in the US, and about 130 million phones will be retired each year.

“Expanding our recycling efforts to the collection of used cellphones is a natural fit for us,” said Ralph Millard, Executive Vice President, RBRC. “Our primary goal is to collect and recycle more rechargeable batteries, but an added benefit is the removal of additional electronic waste from the nation’s landfills — while benefiting select charities at the same time. Our national retail partners are as excited about the new program as we are.”

By Earth Day, April 22 a complete national infrastructure will be in place, with all-in-one cellphone and battery collection boxes shipped to 30,000 participating retailers. A national promotional campaign, including public service announcements (PSAs) starring Richard Karn, Al from Home Improvement and host of Family Feud, will also launch this summer.

“We believe that the convenience and accessibility of the Call2Recycle™ collection boxes will drive the success of the program,” said Charles Newman, president of ReCellular, Inc. “With 30,000 drop-off locations available across the U.S., people will have every opportunity to participate in the Call2Recycle™ program.”

Highlights of the Call2Recycle™ program include the following:

  • Convenient retail locations across the U.S. for consumers to drop off used cellphones
  • Cell phones and rechargeable batteries can be collected in the same box
  • 877-2-RECYCLE: a toll free number where consumers are directed to the nearest drop off location
  • test.us.call2recycle.org: a Web site dedicated to providing program information and drop-off locations
  • No cost for consumers or retailers to participate
  • Program benefits both the environment and worthy charities

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About Call2Recycle®
Call2Recycle is the industry’s first and only product stewardship program for rechargeable batteries. The nonprofit program is administered by the Rechargeable Battery Recycling Corporation (RBRC), a public service organization dedicated to rechargeable battery recycling. There are more than 30,000 Call2Recycle drop-off locations throughout the U.S. and Canada. More than 175 manufacturers and marketers of portable rechargeable batteries and products show their commitment to conserve natural resources and prevent rechargeable batteries from entering the solid waste stream by funding the Call2Recycle program. In pursuit of its mission, Call2Recycle also collects old cellphones, which are either recycled or refurbished and resold when possible with a portion of the proceeds benefiting select charities. For more information, call 877-2-RECYCLE or visit test.us.call2recycle.org.

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