U.N. Body Approves Universal Phone Charger Standard
The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) of the United Nations has given its stamp of approval to an energy-efficient one-charger-fits-all new mobile phone solution. The announcement comes as ITU lobbies hard to have the essential role of information and communication technologies (ICTs) recognized in the draft Copenhagen Agreement as a key part of the solution towards mitigating climate change.
The ITU states that every mobile phone user will benefit from the new Universal Charging Solution (UCS), which enables the same charger to be used for all future handsets, regardless of make and model. In addition to dramatically cutting the number of chargers produced, shipped and subsequently discarded as new models become available, the new standard will mean users worldwide will be able to charge their mobiles anywhere from any available charger, while also reducing the energy consumed while charging.
The new UCS standard was based on input from the GSMA, which predicts a 50 per cent reduction in standby energy consumption, elimination of 51,000 tons of redundant chargers, and a subsequent reduction of 13.6 million tons in greenhouse gas emissions each year.
Director of ITU’s Telecommunication Standardization Bureau (TSB), Malcolm Johnson said, "This is a significant step in reducing the environmental impact of mobile charging, which also has the benefit of making mobile phone use more straightforward. Universal chargers are a commonsense solution that I look forward to seeing in other areas."
According to ITU, the standardization of the solution was completed by Study Group 5 – Environment and Climate Change, and will hasten broad adoption by industry. Based on the Micro-USB interface, UCS chargers will also include a 4-star or higher efficiency rating – up to three times more energy-efficient than an unrated charger.