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Samsung’s Blue Earth cell phone – earth friendly or just hype?

Saturday, March 21st, 2009

samsung blue earth cellphone

In the effort to further green their product line, Samsung is offering its new Blue Earth solar-powered touchscreen cellphone. This recently announced product will be available starting in the UK later this year.

Samsung should be congratulated for the desire to be more green but the greenness of this phone perhaps has less to do with the solar power on its back and more to do with being made from recycled PCM plastic and that it’s free from toxic substances such as brominated flame retardants, beryllium and phthalates. It also has an eco-mode that changes the backlight duration and screen brightness and even includes a pedometer which suggests your CO2 emissions savings of walking instead of driving. Sounds groovy in a Samsung marketing group meeting but lets be real here – how often is your normal user going to use that feature and how much energy does a cellphone use compared to the energy used in the manufacture, mining, transport and marketing of yet another cellphone and you still need to purchase cell phone service.

Considering most people keep their phones in their purse or pocket, I can’t figure out how the phone will get and adequate charge from the solar panel. However, unless you walk around outside with the phone glued to your ear (literally, as otherwise your hand will block the solar panel!) I don’t see how this will work, unless the solar is just optional auxiliary power and the real power comes from a standard lithium battery.

As cellphones and similar gadgets don’t really use that much power to begin with, I don’t see this any significant source of reduction of CO2 and is more of a marketing lure than anything. Rumors of the iPhone, iPod and other apple handheld devices getting solar power maybe prompted Samsung to get ahead of the game.

from Green Upgrader

Another E-Waste video

Tuesday, January 13th, 2009

Here is another great You Tube video about electronic waste dumping.

Cell Phones and Bee Death Buzz

Monday, April 23rd, 2007

Bee Death from Cell Phones?
Are Cell Phones Really Killing the Bees?

Over the past several months there has been a rapid decline of significant percentages of world wide bee colonies. Colony Collapse Disorder is the new name for what has been destroying bee hives. The alarm was first sounded last autumn, but has now hit half of all American states. The West Coast is reported to have lost 60 percent of its commercial bee population, with 70 percent gone on the East Coast. Scientists are don’t know the exact cause, but researchers at Landau University suggest that radiation from mobile phones may be at least partially to blame. Some suggest that the proliferation of cell towers in rural areas may play a role.

Don’t be too quick to believe that cell phones will cause our doom. Spiegel Online looks critically at the research on cellphones and bees death in detail. This article also looks at the many other, more convincing reasons for the Colony Collapse Disorder such as GM crops or global warming.

Bill Maher asked on his HBO show last week if people would give up using the cellphone in order to save the bees – and help prevent the massive ecological collapse and wide spread hunger. He repeated the now famous but quote by Albert Einstein “If the bee disappeared off the surface of the globe, then man would only have four years left to live.’ But is it accurate? Snopes.com suggests its very doubtful Einstein ever said that.
(more…)

Lightweight, waterproof and rollable Solar Panels

Monday, March 26th, 2007

SolarRolls
Brunton SolarRolls

The Brunton SolarRoll is an earth friendly solution for people needing a powerful but lightweight power supply when hiking, camping or boating. No heavy batteries to lug around or to wind up in landfills. The waterproof SolarRoll has been used by sea kayaker’s as their power source for photographic equipment on long voyages in extreme environments. Other uses have been to power satellite phones, and in mountain climbing expeditions. Can also be used to recharge batteries, recharging digital and video cameras, charging laptops, charging cell phones and many other electric needs.

Comes in three sizes the SolarRoll 14 $339.95 (the largest) 12″x57″ open weighs 17 oz. with a maximum output of 14 watts, SolarRoll 9 $239.95 10.6 oz with 9 watts, and the SolarRoll 4.5 $149.95 at 6.4 oz. and max output of only 4.5 watts (enough to recharge a pda and cell phones)
greatoutdoorsdepot.com sells them for the above prices (prices are much higher on the Brunton website)

Wind Up Powered Lantern and phone charger for emergencies

Saturday, March 3rd, 2007

Wind Up LanternDynamo 15 LED Lantern, Alarm & Phone Charger

From “no battery led light.com” $49.95

Climate scientists predict that as global warming worsens there will be an increased chance of hurricanes, tornadoes, and other severe weather. Combine that with unpredictable power grids, peak oil and the increasing prevalence of wacko’s with cars (who are likely to ram into power line poles) and you have a real disaster in the waiting.

The Dynamo Wind Up lantern comes to the rescue just in time to provide light, charge your phone, and sound the alarm. Just wind it up for one minute for 5-8 minutes of light. Wind it up for 5 minutes and get 15-20 minutes of light and 5 minutes of time for talking on your cellphone. Better still, get your partner or teenager to do the winding and save yourself the carpal-tunnel syndrome!   nobatteryledlights has many other models and types to choose from – some much cheaper and others with less wind-up needed. Check out the possibilities here.

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