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Apple defends green credentials, promises to do better

Apple defends green credentials, promises to do better

Apple defends green credentials, promises to do better
May 4, 2007

In a open letter posted Wednesday, Apple Inc. CEO Steve Jobs countered claims by green groups that the iPod and computer maker lagged in recycling and removing toxic chemicals from its products. He said the company is already an industry leader when it comes to the environment and that Apple will continue to reduce its impact on the planet.

Upon investigating Apple’s current practices and progress towards these goals, I was surprised to learn that in many cases Apple is ahead of, or will soon be ahead of, most of its competitors in these areas.” he wrote in a manifesto titled “A Greener Apple.”

Jobs said criticism from environmental groups stems from the company’s lack of communication with the public.

“Whatever other improvements we need to make, it is certainly clear that we have failed to communicate the things that we are doing well,” wrote Jobs. “It is generally not Apple’s policy to trumpet our plans for the future; we tend to talk about the things we have just accomplished. Unfortunately this policy has left our customers, shareholders, employees and the industry in the dark about Apple’s desires and plans to become greener. Our stakeholders deserve and expect more from us, and they’re right to do so. They want us to be a leader in this area, just as we are in the other areas of our business. So today we’re changing our policy.”

Jobs laid out the company’s plans for removing toxic chemicals and recycling of so-called e-waste. He said that the Apple now recycles nearly 10 percent of its e-waste (defined a weight recycled as a percentage of past sales), up from 1.5 percent in 2002, and hopes to reach 28 percent by 2010. Jobs noted that Apples current e-cycling rate is comparable to figures cited from HP and Dell. He said that unlike other technology manufactures, all e-waste collected by Apple in North America is processed in the U.S., and nothing is shipped overseas for disposal.

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e-Waste spot from UNEP. In March 2006, the International Advertising Association (IAA) organised for the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) a global competition between advertising students to develop a campaign on electronic waste (also called e-waste). Further to UNEP advertising brief, Emerson College Global Marketing students produced a TV spot which won the competition. UNEP then asked Emerson College to produce a quite similar TV spot including some additions for TV broadcast, upload on UNEP website and presentation at conferences worldwide.

This article is based on a news release from Stanford University .

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