Back in the age of flip phones, replacing cellphone batteries used to be quite easy. Now, however, smartphones keep their battery compartments sealed off, meaning that users often have to replace the entire device or navigate a complicated repair process when they can no longer hold a charge. This leads to a mind-boggling amount of e-waste, posing a serious threat to the environment.
The European Union is well aware of this problem and has recently drafted a plan that could force all manufacturers of smartphones, wireless earbuds, and tablets to use easily replaceable batteries.
According to the EU, the total e-waste generated within its borders in 2016 was 12.3 million metric tons or 16.6 kg on average per inhabitant.
Right now, the EU’s plans exist in the form of a draft proposal that will be submitted for public discussion next month, according to BI. If it passes, it would apply to all vendors selling within the EU.