South Korean electronics giant Samsung has been beating its sustainability drum hard for the past two years, with impacts that echo across its ecosystem. With slogans like “corporate citizenship” and a major push for eco-friendly supply chains, materials and manufacturing, the company has been pushing for a greener world than ever before. as part of your galaxy to planet and following in the footsteps of its upcycling programs, the abandonment of plastic packaging and a host of other programs, the company’s latest stunt is repurposing discarded fishing nets to help do its part.
The company is announcing new Galaxy devices on Wednesday, but it was eager to give us a glimpse into how these new materials will find a place in their product lineup. The company highlights that it is increasing the efficiency of disposing of single-use plastics and further increasing the use of more environmentally friendly materials. This includes recycled materials (specifically, post-consumer recycled materials) and recycled paper.
To ensure a positive impact, the company is keeping an eye on the 640,000 tons of fishing nets that are discarded every year. The company is pledging to collect and repurpose at least some of these nets in an effort to clean up the oceans a bit. In the process, aquatic landscapes will become a little more pleasant for marine life that would otherwise often find themselves entangled in discarded nets.
In your 2021 report, Samsung highlights that it has done very well so far; reducing the use of plastics by 20%, redesigning certain types of packaging, adding energy-saving features to its products, collecting nearly 5 million tons of e-waste and ensuring that 95% of manufacturing waste is recycled. The company also operates 100% renewable energy in the US, Europe and China. The company has also been working on certifications (such as the Carbon Trust Standard CO reductiontwowater and dependence on non-recyclable materials.
The company stresses that it is committed to addressing plastic pollution in the oceans in ways that will positively impact the environment and “the lives of all Galaxy users.” Presumably if you have a non-Galaxy phone your life can stay the same as before, thank you very much.
All kidding aside – and as someone who has spent more than a few days in scuba gear trying to clear nets and other debris from reefs – I think it’s a positive move by the electronics giant. It remains to be seen whether this will have a measurable impact on the environment. Samsung did not specify how many of the 640,000 tons of fishing nets it intends to pull out of the water annually, but it is encouraging that the conversation continues and the measures continue. I hope Samsung and the other leading manufacturers can continue to outdo themselves to continue playing their role in not burning the planet before we find more comprehensive and comprehensive climate solutions along the way.
I’ll take the bait: A for a fin-tastic effort, Samsung, to keep your friends close and our anemones closer. Now, if we could also encourage people to update their phones every three years instead of every 18 months, we’d have some real traction on our hands.