EARTH Thailand

The Battery Report: Result of a Preliminary survey on Managing Expired Cell Phone Batteries in Thailand

By Ecological Alert and Recovery-Thailand (EARTH), Supported by International POPs Elimination Network (IPEN), October 2010

Project Manager: Penchom Saetang

Researcher: Walaiporn Mooksuwan and Juthamas Suppradid

Translator: Dolruedee Kramnaimuang

Editor: Trevor Kin

Modern humans are not only reliant but it could be argued that they are now dependent on electronic technology. In the realm of telecommunications, especially, there is continuous development of and demand for electronic products. As a result, the increased rate of electronic waste (e-waste) has grown enormously (currently estimated at 40 million tones per year by the United Nations) increase is continuing. Cell phones, in particular, will be disposed of at a rate approximately ten times higher in China and 18 times higher in India in the next ten year period.

It can be confidently predicted that the volume of e-waste will increase, in part because of the aforementioned increasing numbers of cell phone sales. This situation is becoming a difficult issue for the entities responsible for e-waste management. E-waste must be managed differently from domestic waste because e-waste contains hazardous substances as well as plastic and metal. For example, a cell phone contains cadmium, lead, lithium, copper and nickel, all of which are harmful. Nickel, lead and cadmium are carcinogens.  It follows that if these electronic products are not disposed correctly, then there is a risk that the hazardous substances they contain will be released to the environment and endanger human health.    

The safe solution is to remove hazardous substances from electronic products in a recycling facility. Major benefits of this approach are that the ecological footprint of commodity production may be reduced along with a reduction in the cost of resources to the manufacturer as a result of metal-recovery during recycling.


1  Introduction

2 Why an increase in used cell phone batteries in Thailand is causing a problem

3 The stage of used battery management in Thailand 

4.  The survey study on the campaign project for the management of used mobile phone batteries

4.1 The projects on collecting and taking back of used mobile phone batteries conducted by the private sector

  4.1.1  The project on ECOMOTO Takeback of Motorola 

  4.1.2 The project on “Chula loves earth” and “takeback” of Nokia Thailand Company Limited

  4.1.3  The “takeback” project of Sony Ericsson 

  4.1.4 The “think better think cool” project of Commy Cooperation Company Limited 

  4.1.5 The battery for Life project of Total Access Communication Public Company Limited

  4.1.6 The “discard battery: safe, reassure, and help with disposal” project of Advanced Info Services PCL

  4.1.7  The Central Plaza (Rattanathibet branch) Project  

  4.1.8  The computer center at IT Mall Fortune 

  4.1.9  The project of Sumsung shops  

  4.1.10  The activity of i-Mobile shops  

  4.1.11  The activity of Telewiz  

 4.2 The “takeback” or collection programs for used batteries by local government

  4.2.1 Hazardous waste division, Department of Environment, Bangkok Metropolitan Administration

  4.2.2  Environment Service Division, Department of Public Health and Environment, Nonthaburi Municipality 

5  Discussion and observations  

6  Conclusion and recommendations 

 6.1 Conclusion 

  6.1.1 Projects and activities implemented by the private sector  

  6.1.2 Projects and activities implemented by the local governments 

 6.2 Recommendations 

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