Wonder what impact your cell phone has on the environment? GoodGuide has just published a report rating the top 5 “virtuous” cell phones. The ratings are based upon not only environmentally safe practices, but also takes into consideration the social attributes as well? “Social attributes?” you may ask. This rating has to do with the safety and labor policies of the company manufacturing the cell phones. GoodGuide ranks individual models and manufacturers on 3 levels: health, environment, and social attributes. 576 phone models were rated.
GoodGuide Lists Top “Virtuous” Cell Phones
Which phones were rated highest by GoodGuide? According to an article posted by Martin LaMonica, GreenTech, “Nokia phones hold the top spot with a model that contributes to a score of 7.7 out of 10. That’s followed by phones from Samsung, Motorola, Palm, and Sony Ericsson. BlackBerry and its phones are at the bottom, with the lowest score a 3.3 out of 10. Phones from LG, Garmin-Asus, Casio, and Sharp contribute to scores that are largely between 4 and 5.” Apple’s iPhone came in just about middle of the ratings.
How are the ratings derived? Rating the environmental attributes, GoodGuide took into consideration the cell phone’s standby power consumption, as well as the use of recyclable materials used in the packaging and the phone itself. Those products not using bromide flame retardants and PVC are rated higher. Cell phone radiation emissions are not factored in, as there is no consensus about the amount of radiation allowable.
The social attributes rating is based on several factors. Compliance with labor laws is only one aspect. Another consideration is how a manufacturer rates on policies and practices related to conflict minerals, according to the Enough Project. Employee safety is another big concern affecting the ratings. The ratings even include the ethics of the manufacturer.
Are consumers concerned with how their cell phone rates by GoodGuide? I’m not sure too many people are even aware there is a rating like GoodGuide’s. However, as more awareness grows, consumers may make their cell phone purchases based not only on the features the cell phone offers, but also may take into consideration some of the issues rated by GoodGuide. What’s your take on the cell phone ratings? Do you see yourself consulting the ratings by GoodGuide before purchasing another cell phone?