Apple wants all its devices to be made from recycled or renewable materials

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iPhone 7 back
Future iPhones will be made from 100 percent recycled and renewable materials.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Apple has pledged to end its reliance on mining, and to make its devices from only renewable or recycled materials — although it’s not announced any timeline to do so.

The pledge was announced as part of the company’s Environmental Responsibility Report.

As part of the report it notes that:

“Traditional supply chains are linear. Materials are mined, manufactured as products, and often end up in landfills after use. Then the process starts over and more materials are extracted from the earth for new products. We believe our goal should be a closed-loop supply chain, where products are built using only renewable resources or recycled material.”

In an interview between Vice and Lisa Jackson, Apple’s VP of environment, policy and social initiatives, Jackson said that, “We’re actually doing something we rarely do, which is announce a goal before we’ve completely figured out how to do it.”

Last year, 96 percent of the electricity used at Apple’s global facilities came from renewable energy. In 24 countries and all of Apple’s data centers, this figure rises to 100 percent.

Apple
Apple’s making some massive strides.
Photo: Apple

A force for good in the world

Apple’s focus on sustainability comes as no surprise. Just this week, Tim Cook accepted the Free Expression Award at the First Amendment advocacy Newseum — in part for the public stance he has taken on issues such as climate change.

Having once been labeled the “least green” tech company by Greenpeace due to its reliance on coal at data centers, Apple is now one of the most sustainable, eco-friendly companies around. For instance, it uses a smart robot called Liam to disassemble products for recycling, and encourages customers to engage with the Apple Renew recycling program.

It’s also found a way of producing aluminum so that the iPhone 7 enclosure uses 27 percent less of the material than the iPhone 6, while pumping out 60 percent less greenhouse gas emissions. It is also working on new ways to reuse materials, such as melting down old iPhones to build the Mac mini.

There’s plenty still to do — particularly when it comes to eliminating the reliance on “conflict minerals” — but we applaud Apple for taking the right steps.

Via: CNBC

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Deals of the Day

  • Sigh: “Apple’s focus on sustainability comes as no surprise. Just this week, Tim Cook accepted the Free Expression Award at the First Amendment advocacy Newseum — in part for the public stance he has taken on issues such as climate change.”

    • SomeGuy

      Sigh? Good for Tim Cook. He straight up said, if you don’t care about saving and taking care of the Earth, do NOT invest in Apple.

      • Good for Tim Cook, for sure; he keeps winning these meaningless prizes, what’s not to like if you’re Tim Cook.

        On the other hand if you’re a customer of Apple who’s dependent on the Mac as a platform you’d kind of like it if he could tear himself away from the human rights/environmental awards circuit long enough to, you know, get some Mac product ON THE SHELVES that passes the laughter test.

        Instead of which he sent some of his senior executives to give what was essentially an apology briefing to the tech press a couple of weeks ago promising they’d, soon, sometime anyway, get their act together on the Mac front again. It’s joke shop stuff.

        Apple needs to be more than a Phone company (that golden goose won’t keep laying golden eggs forever). Despite the fact that the Mac line has rotted on the vine, under Tim Cook, if Macs were all Apple made it would still be a Fortune 100 company; despite the neglect.

        There’s no excuse for the shabby performance of the Mac division under Cook and it’s notable that when someone at Apple had to wear sackcloth and ashes in public while apologising for this shambles that the bold Tim, saviour of humanity, made his lackeys take the walk of shame.

      • SomeGuy

        Wasn’t there just as article the other day about how the next iMac is going to be a beast of a computer?

        And I could care less about the awards and honestly I’m willing to bet the same goes for Tim. But influencing the rest of the world and proving that it’s possible for big corporations to go green is a great thing. I don’t use my MacBook for anything skill intensive so I can’t say I share your pain, but I agree that they should get their act together. But going green and making a more capable Mac are not mutually exclusive goals. So speaking about them as if they were makes zero sense.

      • “Wasn’t there just as article the other day about how the next iMac is going to be a beast of a computer?” Yes there was.

        The key phrase segment here is: “is going to be” Talking about stuff, stuff that does not yet exist, is emblematic of the Cook era at Apple. Getting it on the shelves and into the hands of customers is emblematic of the Jobs era.

        What was Steve Jobs politics? You know what I read the entire Walter Isaacson biography and I’m still none the wiser, from what I can tell his politics was Apple, end of.

      • Facts Appear Directly Below

        While Steve Jobs had a right to his privacy, Tim Cook has a right to express his liberal views. Being a liberal is something that any decent, intelligent person should be proud of (just as being conservative should be a source of shame). When Tim Cook and Apple take stands for liberal causes, it makes me pleased that I’m a shareholder (2,000 AAPL shares), own two Mac Pros, two MacBooks, an iPhone, iPad, multiple iPods, and two Apple TVs.

      • That would be well and good if Tim Cook could walk and chew gum at the same time. He can’t, otherwise I’m at a loss to explain – perhaps you can – why he forced two senior executives to take the walk of shame on his behalf over dropping the ball on the Mac division.

        Oh and BTW, I’ve no interest in Tim Cook’s politics. I do however know Apple’s politics and they involve nothing other than buying low, and selling high. That was true under Jobs and it’s just as true under Cook. Don’t fool yourself.

        That’s why nearly everything they make is manufactured in China by people who are virtually chained to an assembly line. The rest of the guff is pure virtue signaling by a vain man who keeps taking his eye off the ball. Still, I suppose as long as that iPhone keeps laying those golden eggs Tim has loads of road ahead of him until the day it stops laying those golden eggs. That’s the moment everyone gets nostalgic about the days of John Sculley.

        In the meantime Tim has a good few years left to bore everyone rigid about his pedestrian opinions on gender and bathroom etiquette in North Carolina.

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      • SomeGuy

        lol Ok let’s slow down there. Blindly following whatever is deemed “liberal” and whatever is deemed “conservative” as good and bad is a very unintelligent and unintellectual thing to do. That’s called being an idealogue. I like what Tim Cook is about but that doesn’t stop me from sharing views with both liberals and conservatives.

      • If you believe Tim Cook’s schtick then good for you. I don’t care about it. What I do care about is that the iMacs are laughably outdated and underpowered. However there’s nothing in the least bit laughable about the state Cook let the Power Mac fall into, that is a travesty of incompetence. But hey, he’s saying all the right stuff about toilets in North Carolina so I guess that’s okay then.

      • SomeGuy

        Ok. You’re right. Tim Cook’s politics are why they lost their vision for the Macs. Are you happy now?

      • His politics are immaterial. They lost their vision for the Macs because he isn’t a very good CEO.

      • SomeGuy

        lmao or maybe because Macs aren’t the revenue driver that they used to be.

        He’s one of the best in the country hahahaha But because one product isn’t what you want it to be he “isn’t very good.” Sure.

      • “lmao or maybe because Macs aren’t the revenue driver that they used to be.” How much of a revenue driver would iPhones be is Apple stopped bothering to do update them properly or do anything new with them? You are laughing at a self fulfilling prophesy. Let me rephrase that for you: Macs aren’t the revenue driver that they used to be because Tim Cook is a not very good Apple CEO.

      • Facts Appear Directly Below

        SomeGuy wrote: “Blindly following whatever is deemed “liberal” and whatever is deemed “conservative” as good and bad is a very unintelligent and intellectual thing to do.”

        BEING a liberal is different than “blindly following whatever is deemed ‘liberal’,” so the premise of your argument is a straw man. One can BE a liberal without “blindly following” anything. There are plenty of liberals who disagree on individual issues — but we are still overall liberals in their views. The same goes for conservatives.

        David Hall wrote: “His politics are immaterial. They lost their vision for the Macs because he isn’t a very good CEO.”

        Then don’t criticize him for making his political views known.

        David Hall wrote: “That’s why nearly everything they make is manufactured in China by people who are virtually chained to an assembly line.”

        Welcome to the world of unregulated capitalism. There are plenty of people thumping their chests and yelling “buy American!” But when it comes to their own purchases, cost, not country of manufacture, drives their decision.

        But the answer to that is not to eliminate the minimum wage, gut OSHA, emasculate the EPA, oppose unions, and undo worker protections here, allowing us to create our own manufacturing peasant class that works themselves to death for starvation wages in Foxconn-like conditions.

        David Hall wrote: “They lost their vision for the Macs because he isn’t a very good CEO.”

        No, they lost *MY* vision for Macs because it’s not profitable to cater to consumers with 8-bay RAID 6 NASs, homes wired for gigabit networking, and “ECC RAM or die” attitudes who host their own domains. The commercial workstation market is not a thriving one either, as evidenced by the demise of Apollo Computer, Sun Microsystems, and Silicon Graphics.

        Lest you forget, (Saint) Steve Jobs was behind the Power Mac G4 Cube, which was a flop, faulted for its high cost, lack of expandability, and putting form over function and style over power. That sounds just like the complaints I hear about the current Mac Pro.

        David Hall wrote: “In the meantime Tim has a good few years left to bore everyone rigid about his pedestrian opinions on gender and bathroom etiquette in North Carolina.”

        Have you ever feared for your life because you’re a transgender woman forced to use a men’s restroom? Have you ever been beaten to a bloody pulp by people who don’t approve of your gender identity or clothing? Perhaps if you had, you would not find it to be such a trivial issue. I find it interesting that you are so quick to criticize Tim Cook, a gay man, for taking this stand, but don’t seem to have an equal zeal for criticizing the CEOs of General Electric, Hewlett Packard, PayPal, Dow Chemical Company, Pepsi, Northrup Grumman, Bank of America, and many other firms that have taken a stand against the NC “bathroom law.”

      • “David Hall wrote: “His politics are immaterial. They lost their vision for the Macs because he isn’t a very good CEO.”

        Then don’t criticize him for making his political views known.” I’ll criticise him for any act of public preening that isn’t in the service of getting better product to the customers.

        “Welcome to the world of unregulated capitalism.” Says he by means of technology he wouldn’t ever be able to afford (assuming said technology it even existed) under any other system.

        Note: Capitalism is HIGHLY regulated. Get up to speed please.

      • Facts Appear Directly Below

        David Hall wrote: “I’ll criticise him for any act of public preening that isn’t in the service of getting better product to the customers.”

        You’ll use any excuse to criticize him for voicing support for liberal causes, using the “better product” schtick as an excuse for doing it.

        You wrote: “Note: Capitalism is HIGHLY regulated. Get up to speed please.”

        Only a right-wing tool, who isn’t “up to speed,” would make such a claim. Foxconn put up nets to catch workers trying to jump to their deaths and that’s your definition of “highly regulated”? If it was highly regulated, Apple wouldn’t even be allowed to bring products into this country if they were manufactured there.