updated 02:30 am EDT, Fri May 9, 2008
Apple last in industry
Apple has been ranked the worst among all major PC vendors and other large electronic firms in the fight against climate change. Climate Counts this week released its second annual Company Scorecard hoping to create a "simple, easy-to-understand ranking of companies would motivate both companies and consumers to step-up their efforts on climate change." Apple was ranked in last place among the list of 12 electronics companies, while companies such as IBM, Canon, Toshiba, Sony, and Hewlett-Packard were near the top of the electronics industry. Top honor went to Nike, which passed last year's high scorer, Canon, to become the top scored company among the 56 companies evaluated. Apple was the only electronic company to receive a "Stuck" designation, with a recommendation as a choice to "avoid for the climate-conscious consumer," because the company has taken "meaningful action against climate change."
Google, Anheuser-Busch and Levi Strauss had the largest score improvement, each jumping over 20 points. Overall, Climate Counts said that new Scorecard shows a "real shift towards greater climate commitment across most industry sectors" -- with 84 percent of scored companies improving their Climate Counts scores.
"Business is being pushed by consumers to do its part to solve the climate crisis," said Gary Hirshberg, chair of Climate Counts and CEO of organic yogurt maker Stonyfield Farm. "The Scorecard allows consumers to make good climate decisions in their everyday purchases, and it's having an impact."
Apple, which improved its score from last year, was given a grade of 11 and was among the three that scored below 50, along with Nokia and Dell. Apple's ranking was well below the average score, which jumped 22 percent to 39 (from 30).
The companies were scored on a scale from zero to 100, based on 22 criteria that fall within four benchmarks: whether they measure their carbon footprint; what efforts they have made to reduce their own climate impact; whether they support or oppose global warming legislation; and what they disclose to the public about their work to address climate change. Efforts to reduce climate impact was valued the most (56 possible points), while public disclosure of a meaningful review of the company's impact global warming was second (22 possible points). Public disclosure was ranked third with 12 possible points and the company's policy stance was fourth with 12 possible points.
Apple did poorly in all four categories, but Climate Counts did focus on publicly available information. Climate Counts said that it found no publicly available information on Apple's efforts to measure its company-wide impact on global warming (i.e., its greenhouse gas emissions or climate footprint) and thus gave the company zero points.
And while the non-profit found that Apple had completed analysis of the impact that many of its products have on global warming while and that it had "engaged with its employees and other companies on climate-related issues," it only gave Apple 8 out of a possible 56 points for its efforts.
Apple also received no points in the policy category as Climate Counts says it found no public information to suggest that Apple supports public policy that addresses climate change.