Wednesday, March 4, 2009

A Greener Apple

I thought it would be useful to post on a topic in green design that I find interesting. I'm a computer guy so I'm only talking about Apple computers, but there are many more topics/products out there. Feel free to post your own in the comments or in another post.

Apple had come under criticism from a few environmental groups about toxic materials in their products. In order to reduce the harmful impact of their products, Apple removed a lot of toxic chemicals, introduced LED backlit computer screens, made a majority of the computer recyclable and reduced packaging for the new MacBooks. These changes affect the amount environmental impact not only in the use cycle of the computer, but in the manufacturing, transportation stages of the computer's life.

But are these changes enough? Or are they even doing something? A Wall Street Journal article posted at the end of last year questioned how green Apple really is. Is this just "green-washing" or are they making a difference? Both?

Whether or not Apple is as green as they say, it would be hard to argue that building and design standards are taking environmental impacts into account. Whether it is solely more profitable for a company to reduce the packaging and manufacturing steps or because of a philosophical belief, it bodes well for everyone.

3 comments:

SC_Tang said...

Another article I read talks about the Solar PV cell that Apple would like to put in its ipod, iphone and maybe some laptops. This is nothing new, because we probably all have solar power calculators or watches. Here is the link to the article (http://www.hotfrog.com.au/Companies/Energy-Matters/FullPressRelease.aspx?id=11029)
I am just amazed by how Apple as a company is willing to transform and adopt into using green energy. I believe we should have more company like that. I completely agree with you on your last statement. It doesn't matter if Apple is using the solar cell just to increase its battery life but it is a good start. If it continues to develop following the right track , it will benefit everyone.

justme said...

I liked this post. I found green news about a Texas based computer company: Dell.

According to its CEO Michael Dell green IT will have a considerable effect on the reduction of greenhouse gasses. The company is develeping more efficient components and using recycled materials.

Dell's carbon intensity(CO2 emissions/revenue is one of the lowest among Fortune 50. Its corporate headquarters are powered with 100 % green energy sources.

Reference
Michael Dell: Green IT Key to Achieving a Low-Carbon Economy.
Publication: Business Wire
Date: Tuesday, April 22 2008
http://www.allbusiness.com/environment-natural-resources/environmentalism/10176616-1.html

David Wogan said...

Nice! I remember reading about Dell awhile back. It seems that it's not only good PR for a company to be more "green", but it has the potential to save them money, too.