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Apple posts 2008 environmental update

updated 11:15 am EDT, Fri October 17, 2008

Apple 2008 green report

Apple CEO Steve Jobs has issued a new summary letter, describing the company's environmental efforts during 2008. The letter is divided into three different topics, beginning with toxins. Jobs notes that the company has promised to eliminate PVC and brominated flame retardants (BFRs) from all hardware by the end of 2008, and that while this has proven difficult, it has so far removed the chemicals from "thousands" of components. Apple is said to be in the final stages of developing and approving PVC-free power cords.

Regarding mercury and arsenic, Jobs comments that the MacBook Air was the first computer to ship without the former in its backlighting, or the latter in its glass. The newest iPods and iPhones omit mercury from their displays, as well as all PVC and BFRs, and the updated metal and glass MacBooks are said to use only LED displays. The reduction of chemicals may be attributable to continual publicity by activist groups such as Greenpeace.

In terms of recycling, Jobs claims that Apple's takeback programs have "grown dramatically," as evidenced by a 57 percent increase in recycling volume during 2007 to reach 21 million pounds. Takeback options are said to exist in 95 percent of the countries in which Apple operates.

Jobs adds that the company is approaching carbon pollution issues "at a product level," because it believes that this will help people "make informed decisions about their own carbon footprint and how to reduce it." It is however said to be publishing data for all stages in a product's lifecycle, beginning today, through a Product Environmental Reports section on the Apple website. Figures are available on energy efficiency, product and packaging materials, and greenhouse emissions.

by MacNN Staff



  1. danviento

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Wasted Opportunity

    I know it's very unlikely to happen, but Apple's emergence as a power player in hardware sales gives them the power to start a trend- a trend that ignores the whining of the Greepeace-ilk as that yapping of small dogs.

    Yes, for those in the SanFran area who actually buy into the 1ppm=polluter! bunk, this pandering can be effective marketing. However, the rest of us couldn't care less.

    Is going to make much difference how much energy it costs to manufacture or run these machines? The only area in terms of power consumption the sensible majority of people care about is how long is their batter going to last.

    Apple would have done better to articulate the point that, "By using X process, we were able to save all the aluminum and X amount of power to cut the cost by X%, effectively passing the savings onto you." Instead we got the usual checklist of greenpuke gripe responses. Sooooooooooze!

  1. Paul Huang

    Joined: Dec 1969



    The wasteful process of carving out of a piece of aluminum results in massive waste of water and 80% of waste aluminum (2.5 pounds of metal and 2 pounds turn into shreads), which still require a lot of energy to recover and recycle.

    So, what's the end result? at least 70% savings in assembly labor and possibly reduction of payout to authorized service providers on warranty repairs.

    It's just a publicity stunt. Drop this thing and the result is going to be the same.

  1. Fast iBook

    Joined: Dec 1969



    The fact that people are dogging apple and no one else is lame. Try microsoft. They make tons of hardware that no one ever looks at!

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