UN nod for universal mobile phone chargers

The new charger, which will use Micro-USB plug as common universal charging interface compatible with any type of mobile phone, will also reduce the amount of energy consumed while charging, according to International Telecommunication Unions (ITU).
The one-size-fits-all standard will allow mobile users worldwide to charge their handsets anywhere from any available charger.

The new Universal Charging Solution (UCS) will also help reduce the the number of chargers produced, used and discarded every year, thus cutting down on electronic waste produce and Green House Gas (GHG) emissions.

“This is a significant step in reducing the environmental impact of mobile charging,” said Malcolm Johnson, Director of ITU’s Telecommunication Standardisation Bureau (TSB).
“Universal chargers are a common sense solution that I look forward to seeing in other areas,” Johnson said.

The GSM Association (GSMA), trade body for the mobile phone industry, estimates that the new UCS would result in a 50 per cent cut in the energy consumed when chargers are left on standby, thereby reducing annual GHG emissions by 13.6 million tonnes.
It will also eliminate the need to manufacture 51,000 tonnes of duplicate chargers, produced every year.

The new charger will have a 4-star or higher efficiency rating and would be up to three times more energy-efficient than an unrated one.

According to the GSMA, the standard will be a big boost to convenience as consumers will be able to keep using the same charger for handsets produced in future, as well as power up their mobile phones wherever a universal charger is available.

The decision was a part of the ITU’s efforts to have the essential role of information and communication technologies (ICTs) recognised in the draft Copenhagen Agreement as one of the solution towards mitigating climate change.

“ICTs are an essential element of an effective Copenhagen climate agreement,” said Secretary-General Hamadoun Toure while giving the stamp of approval to the new energy-efficient charger.

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