Cell Phones = Ape Killing Machines?
I just wanted to write a little something about apes today, since I have time and that is what my blog is ultimately all about.
What I am concerned about is how electronics impact chimpanzees and gorillas.
We all have our causes, right?
Well, I love monkeys, and I have since the 4th grade when I read an autobiography about Jane Gooddall and her time with the chimps in Africa.
I’m going to use the term “monkey” loosely here, but for all you sticklers out there, lets just clarify that monkeys have tails and apes do not, thus chimps and gorillas are not monkeys. Those are the ones I really am interested in, but its just more fun to call them monkeys right now, so I’m gonna.
Anyway, I also love garbage. The whole subject. How we think about it, how we handle it, where it comes from, where it goes, etc. I studied environmental topics for 4 years at a university, which is where my interest in garbage began.
Over the years, I have gotten into recycling…see photo of me working as a can collector back at UCSB…
and compost…see article I wrote about a bicycle-powered compost company in Santa Cruz, and photo of compost bike set-up, just cuz…
and most recently, I’ve started focusing on electronic waste.
I have to do more research, but the gist of my concern is that electronics are basically APE KILLING MACHINES.
Ok, that is a bit extreme, I know, but really, some of the materials that go into electronic devices come from gorilla and chimpanzee habitat; see coltan. Its like deforestation and palm oil, see horrible orangutan PSA here.
With all the electronics out there, and the tendency to upgrade cell phones and other devices just because the next version is available or whatever, there is a lot of room for conservation and behavioral adjustments on the part of humans like you and me. I’m not suggesting we stop using electronics, but how bout dialing it back a little bit and definitely recycling. Remember that upgrading your perfectly good Iphone 6 for the Iphone 6.2 has real effects on people, plants, and critters in other parts of the world.
Not only are apes being affected in their natural habitats in Africa, but also people in China and India are receiving tons of electronic waste and dealing with the environmental and human health impacts we just never see here in the US.
Thoughts? Knowledge to share?
Thank you and all the best,