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Cell Phone Plans: Green Your Phone With CREDO Mobile, Earth Tones

How to help the planet every time you place a call by greening your cell phone

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Green cell phone carriers are growing in popularity.

Green cell phone carriers are growing in popularity.

Photo © Jamie Grill, Getty Images
Updated January 07, 2009
By now, “being green” is more than just trendy. It’s actually uncool not to be. Whether or not you buy into the global environmental movement, the green game is even seeping its way into the mobile world via green cell phone plans.

Cell phone carriers have sprung up on the basis of answering this simple question: “You’re already spending money on a cell phone. Why not switch your carrier, receive the same quality deal and also have some of your money go to good green use?”

These companies haven’t built their own wireless backbones. They’re merely reselling service from the big boys and using their infrastructure. Still, you may find the phones, plans and overall quality just the same with the added benefit of feeling good about every call you make in a whole new way.

Earth Tones

Fresh off a visit to the 2008 Chicago Green Festival, first we have Earth Tones as a shining example. While the company resells AT&T service, it has a unique green purpose lining the pockets of worthy, Earth-helping organizations.

Since 1993, they’re the only communications company donating 100 percent of its profits to environmental organizations. Earth Tones, which also recycles old handsets, donates to organizations including:

  • National Environmental Law Center
  • State PIRGs
  • Campaign to Save the Environment
  • Recycling Action
  • EcoPledge.com
  • Toxics Action Center
  • Free the Planet!
  • The Green Life

    Of course, Earth Tones offers a tree-free billing option along with monthly green alerts. Its service plans are comparable to the major cell phone carriers. As of this date, they’re listed below.

    $20: 100 anytime minutes
    $25: 200 anytime minutes
    $35: 400 anytime minutes
    $45: 600 anytime minutes
    $55: 800 anytime minutes
    $85: 1,200 anytime minutes

    CREDO Mobile

    CREDO Mobile, which resells Sprint, is perhaps the most impressive green cell phone company of them all.

    The company boasts more than just green cell phone karma and is quickly earning the right to call itself “America’s greenest mobile phone company”. First championing worthwhile causes under the name Working Assets beginning in 1985, CREDO Mobile has now raised $60 million for the causes many people believe in most.

    At no extra cost or hassle to you, the company says it donates 1 percent of your charges to “progressive non-profits working for peace, civil rights, the environment, economic equality and fair voting”.

    These groups include:

  • ACLU
  • Doctors Without Borders
  • Children’s Defense Fund
  • Planned Parenthood
  • Global Fund for Women
  • Rainforest Action Network
  • Organic Farming Research Foundation
  • National Gay & Lesbian Task Force
  • Iraq Veterans Against the War
  • Union of Concerned Scientists
  • Greenpeace
  • Sierra Club
  • Earthjustice

    As well, CREDO has raised some $10 million for environmental groups including the Ocean Conservancy, Defenders of Wildlife and the Alliance for Climate Protection. CREDO says: “We also work actively for a cleaner, greener world. We helped pass the first increase in fuel-economy standards in 23 years and block coal-burning power plants in six states.”

    Interestingly, all plans include unlimited “CREDO-to-CREDO calling,” which costs $5 extra on Sprint. CREDO requires a two-year service contract for all new plans, though, in exchange for its risk and cost to acquire you.

    All plans also come out of the shrink wrap with unlimited minutes at night and on the weekends. CREDO Mobile will even buy out your current cell phone contract. This means if you terminate now and have to pay a penalty, CREDO will eat the cost up to $200 in the form of a service credit. Its plans are compelling and competitive:

    Individual Plans
    $30: 200 anytime minutes
    $50: 600 anytime minutes
    $80: 1,350 anytime minutes

    Family Plans
    $60: 550 anytime minutes
    $90: 1,400 anytime minutes
    $110: 2,100 anytime minutes

    Your Two Cents: Have a green comment or question related to this article? Chime in on the forums!
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