Utne Blogs > Environment

How Do You Like Them Apples?

by Staff


Tags: Apple, computer, green, environment, toxic, pollutants, Greenpeace, iPhone, iPod, batteries, Macbook Air, PVC, BFR,

The iPhone was universally greeted with ticker-tape parades, satisfied high fives, and people dancing in the streets. Well, almost. Since it was unveiled, the feather rufflers at Greenpeace have been skeptical of the revolutionary phone for environmental reasons. Back in May 2007, a month before the iPhone dropped, Apple CEO Steve Jobs made a commitment to phasing out all brominated flame retardants (BFRs) and chlorinated plastic polyvinyl chloride (PVC) in Apple products by the end of 2008. PVC and BFRs are toxic pollutants hazardous to the environment once they enter the waste stream. A study by Greenpeace revealed concerning levels of both toxins in the iPhone.

Apple has been under fire by environmentalist for years over its iPod batteries, which have proven to be short-lived and environmentally hazardous. The company was specifically targeted because of its image as an environmentally conscious company, and because of astronomical iPod sales, the Christian Science Monitor wrote in 2005.

As a possible act of redemption, however, Apple has now unleashed the Macbook Air, an eco-friendly laptop so skinny the tabloids think it’s anorexic. Starre at Eco-Chick has a rundown of the computer’s green credentials, which include an absence of both PVC and BFRs, as well as a packaging reduction of 56 percent. Plus, she points out, it’s sexy.

Erik Helin