Apple iPhones are one of the hottest gadgets around, but have been criticized for their use of hazardous materials and so-called “conflict minerals,” valuable metals mined primarily in the Republic of Congo, where militia groups have used profits from mines to fund one of the bloodiest wars since World War 2. Following a successful online campaign spearheaded by Greenpeace, Apple CEO Steve Jobs has promised to reduce the environmental impact of manufacturing Apple’s iPhones and other products, and has indicated support for recent legislation designed to prevent conflict minerals from entering the supply chain.
If you’ve already purchased an iPhone, one way to reduce the environmental impact of the phone is to purchase eco-friendly iPhone accessories. One of the most important accessories for any iPhone is a good case. Cases not only allow you to add a little personalization to your phone’s appearance, they also protect the phone from damage, lengthening its life and ensuring that it won’t need to be replaced as quickly.
There are a growing number of unique eco-friendly iPhone cases on the market. Many of the best are made from recycled materials.
Five Awesome Eco-Friendly iPhone Cases Made From Recycled Materials
The cheapest eco-friendly iPhone case is Case-Mate’s $0.99 iPhone Recession Case, designed for the iPhone 3G/3GS. The case also comes in a “Bailout Bundle” of 10 cases for $7.99 and a “Stimulus Package” of 30 cases for $14.99. Made from 100% recycled cardboard, the Recession Case is not water-proof, not flame-resistant, not pre-assembled, and has no warranty, but as long as you don’t drop it in a puddle or set it on fire, it still does a surprisingly good job of protecting your iPhone. Plus, it’s one heck of a conversation starter!
Agent18’s popular EcoShield Slider for the iPhone 3G/3GS is made from recycled plastic bottles, conserving energy and reducing waste. The case includes a screen protector and table stand, and features a secure locking mechanism to prevent the case from sliding apart at inappropriate times, interior silicone pads to prevent scratching, and side grips to improve traction when carrying. The EcoShield Slider for the iPhone 4 is currently available for pre-order.
Incipio’s Tribal REGRIND ECO|case is made out of 100% recycled materials, including at least 20% recycled Incipio products! The use of recycled materials gives each case a unique texture and color, and the cases are molded into an eye-catching tribal design. In addition to its unique appearance, the case’s dense silicone construction provides exception shock protection for your iPhone.
The TREAD Burlesque is a sexy little case made from the recycled inner tubes of Columbian trucks. The inner tubes are carefully cleaned and then hand-crafted into unique and high quality iPhone cases. TREAD’s commitment to sustainability goes beyond environmental responsibility. TREAD also seeks to ensure fair wages and working conditions for its employees, many of whom have been displaced by the ongoing conflict in Columbia.
Another cool iPhone case made from recycled inner tubes is the i-tube (pictured at top). Made from the recycled inner tubes of bicycle tires, the i-tube is hand-crafted and lined with elastic micro fiber to keep your iPhone clean and safe.