Sprint uses Underwriters Laboratories (UL) Environment to provide trusted, third-party sustainability certification for mobile phones, tablets and hotspots.

UL’s global experience with validation and certification in the safety and building industries, along with its rigorous process for creating, implementing and certifying to standards programs, makes it a strong choice for sustainability certification.
 
The standards for mobile phones, tablets and hotspots cover aspects impacting human health and the environment along the full life cycle of a device, as well as the manufacturer’s corporate sustainability policies and practices. Criteria are either mandatory or optional, with optional criteria carrying a point value for compliance.  A total of 109 points are available, with an additional 10 points given for innovation initiatives not covered elsewhere in the standard.  Devices earning 55 percent or more of the total points (60 points) are designated as Certified. Those receiving 73 percent or more (80 points) earn the Platinum designation.
 
In January 2012, Sprint included a UL 110 Sustainability Certification requirement in our Environmental Requirements for Mobile Phones — an industry first. As part of our extensive Environmental Requirements and Scorecard program, all phones across the Sprint, Virgin Mobile and Boost Mobile brands are required to go through the UL 110 certification process with the expectation of certifying. 
 
Our annual results show success in launching a high percentage of sustainably certified phones and are a testament to the strength of our Environmental Requirements and Environmental Scorecard.
  • 2012  79 percent certified, with 34 percent earning Platinum
  • 2013  80 percent certified, with 45 percent earning Platinum
  • 2014  85 percent certified, with 61 percent earning Platinum
 
In late 2013, UL Environment published two additional standards, UL 2853 Sustainability Standards for Mobile Hot Spots and UL 2841 Sustainability Standards for Tablet Style Slates. Again, due to our stringent product sustainability program, Sprint devices were the first to certify under each standard.
 
Visit our shop eco-friendly devices page for a list of in-market devices certified sustainable by UL Environment. Each device displays a set of eco-rating scores based on UL’s detailed evaluation and scoring so consumers can weigh each device’s impact on the environment.
 

Current scoring

Material use 15 points
Energy use 24 points
Health & environment 27 points
End of life management 13 points
Packaging 13 points
Manufacturing & operations 18 points
Innovation 10 points
TOTAL 109 points

Certified > 60 points
Platinum > 80 points  

A copy of UL’s sustainability standards can be ordered and downloaded at http://www.comm-2000.com/.
 

History

Sprint first met with UL Environment in the summer of 2010 as we began exploring possible partners to provide third-party device certification. The relationship quickly evolved based on both organizations' desire to see a new global sustainability standard following the UL standards development process. UL contacted wireless carriers and mobile device manufacturers to determine their interest in a sustainability standard for mobile phones and willingness to join the initial development team. Sprint invited several of our key manufacturers to participate, and by the end of the summer, UL had agreements to move forward with the initial development including Sprint (the only carrier) and five manufacturers, three of whom were current manufacturers for Sprint.
 
In June 2011, UL 110 was released, making it available for device certification. As the standard was being finalized, Sprint worked with Samsung Mobile to take a new device, the Samsung Replenish, through the assessment process and in June 2011, Sprint announced that Samsung Replenish had earned a Platinum certification on UL 110 — the first device in the U.S. to be certified using the new standard and the first to achieve a Platinum rating, the highest level.
 
Through the standard development process, we realized we could play a significant role in encouraging widespread adoption of the new standard, which would in turn accelerate the incorporation of more sustainable manufacturing and development processes for the mobile phone industry as a whole. We had seen success with the environmental section of our device scorecard, which provides the minimum sustainability requirements for all Sprint mobile phones, so we added the UL 110 assessment process as a requirement to our 2012 device scorecard.
 

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