Apple hates the environment, pulls out of EPEAT

While we all love our electronic devices, everyone knows that they contain a lot of hazardous waste in them. The idea for a standard that electronics manufacturers could use to signify their products are environmentally friendly was started in 2001 and the Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT) was released in 2006. EPEAT requires products meet criteria in eight environmental performance categories, one of which is the level of environmentally sensitive materials it contains. Apple currently has 39 certified desktops, laptops, and monitors.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Apple has asked EPEAT to pull all of their devices from the list as they back out of the restrictions the regulations impose. The given reason is that Apple’s future design goals no longer conform to the EPEAT requirements, and this was in full display when iFixit attempted a teardown of the Retina MacBook Pro: The battery is glued to the case, making removal for recycling impossible.

Although reducing the recyclability of their products isn’t a good thing, this decision could severely impact Apple’s sales. The United States federal government has a requirement that over 95% of their purchases must be EPEAT certified, so this change could force them to purchase competing devices. In addition, 25% of the largest universities require purchased products be EPEAT certified, and nearly 75% give preferential treatment to EPEAT devices.

Apple has long claimed that the company believes the environment is very important and that they are doing everything they can to prevent electronic waste, but according to TexasEnvironment.org, this is mostly rhetoric and lacks any substance. Indeed, the company “lags behind competitors such as Dell in designing its products with safe end-of-life in mind.” iFixit sums it up nicely: “Apple’s decision to opt out of the most basic of eco-standards demonstrates that, despite the costs, design supersedes the environment.”

Via: WSJ
Source: iFixit | Image Courtesy of iFixit

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lots of drama and sensation. none of the real fact and fact-checking on the whys and the hows. how low can neowin go.

I wonder what the enviro-hipster brigade who decry corporate polluters while clutching their iDevices are going to do.

Well, it's obvious that "Mr. Jobs has left the building".
You think they would get away with that if he were around? I'll wager that Apple will become what it did the first time Jobs left, but, unlike that time, he won't be coming back to save it.
Apple will become, as most corporation do, all about the money, and the heck with everything else.

naap51stang said,
Well, it's obvious that "Mr. Jobs has left the building".
You think they would get away with that if he were around? I'll wager that Apple will become what it did the first time Jobs left, but, unlike that time, he won't be coming back to save it.
Apple will become, as most corporation do, all about the money, and the heck with everything else.

You think under Jobs it wasn't that? Especially pushing both a hardware and software monopoly from the beginning?

Apple's real issue are those procurement requirements that nearly require (or require) EPEAT certification - because EPEAT *itself* is a voluntary set of standards, procurement regulations that require compliance with such voluntary standards are a form of backdoor regulation. What Apple is basically saying that if those standards are such a good thing, write them into law or regulation - don't BOHICA us by requiring compliance with voluntary standards.

More importantly than the title and SHOOTING the messenger...
Anyone have comments on what Apple is doing?

Apple has created a disposable industry of computing products with the inability to replace even a battery in a device/computer that has a limited life in years.

This was ALREADY a concern for consumers without considering the environmental impact due to the fact that there is no longevity and you won't find a 'battery' powered MacBook running in 10 years because the battery will be exhausted.

Apple is basically saying go F yourselves, our disposable crap will rot in the ground for 100s of years, and we also don't care about short term health concerns either. There are a lot of toxic components in computers, things people have no clue because they are encased and 'solid state' looking.

However they are made of chemicals and components that have limited life functionality, the battery being the most notorious, but also the screen technology WEARS out and is toxic if dumped in a river as well.


Anybody that also thinks this is just 'liberal agenda' crap, do not understand the financial aspects and the ways this violates conservatism by encouraging disposable products that leaves users locked into a failing product after a few years.

what about this tilt on it... They are selling more Ipads... lots of people have replaced the "purchase" of a PC for an Ipad.. hence a NET reduction in plastics and waste.... also, Ipads use next to no power when compared to a PC that people tend to use a lot less once they have an Ipad... hence a NET reduction in over all power consumption..

as with everything, you can tilt a topic to twist it good or bad.

Not to point out the obvious.. But just because you leave a standard, doesn't mean you need to produce something that is worse than..

So they are leaving it because they can't/don't want to abide by some areas of it, they can still be exceeding in other areas..

And the Glue on a battery.. really ? I can understand if it's fused to a plastic case, but glue comes off Aluminium fairly easy in my experience.. Not to mention that makes them very recyclable.. They have the same type of internal components as any other computer, and the shell of their laptops and MacPro's [ not sure about the iMac's, haven't looked at them in a while ] are all metal, which is ideal for recycling..

Ryoken said,
Not to point out the obvious.. But just because you leave a standard, doesn't mean you need to produce something that is worse than.

But - as stated in the article - Apple is producing products that are less recyclable and therefore worse for the environment. It's a way to make more money by sacrificing ethical business practices.

theyarecomingforyou said,

But - as stated in the article - Apple is producing products that are less recyclable and therefore worse for the environment. It's a way to make more money by sacrificing ethical business practices.
Says one group..

The article says having a glued battery makes recycling impossible.. which is nuts..

It's the internet.. every side has a site that backs it's claims.. I'm not saying Apple is the best, infact I highly doubt it.. but they aren't making their computers out of depleted uranium, and baby seal skin..

In the end the only thing Apple makes is the cases.. the components inside are all from 3rd parties and are near identical to every other computer on the planet.. Same HDD's, Memory, Displays, Batteries, RAM, circuits, etc..

So unless their case is depleted uranium, and they are using toxic waste as glue, I just find it hard to believe that there's that much difference between Apple, Dell, HP, Acer, etc..

Ryoken said,
So unless their case is depleted uranium, and they are using toxic waste as glue, I just find it hard to believe that there's that much difference between Apple, Dell, HP, Acer, etc..

No offense, but I think you have blinders on. If it wasn't a big deal, and Apple was just like the other companies that ARE part of EPEAT, why would they quietly take down their EPEAT certifications? They know their stuff isn't as recyclable (ie: the battery shouldn't be held down with industrial strength glue -- which IS nearly impossible to take off), so they can't be EPEAT certified. But they know most Apple fanbois will spin it as no big deal, just like you did.

Fezmid said,

No offense, but I think you have blinders on. If it wasn't a big deal, and Apple was just like the other companies that ARE part of EPEAT, why would they quietly take down their EPEAT certifications? They know their stuff isn't as recyclable (ie: the battery shouldn't be held down with industrial strength glue -- which IS nearly impossible to take off), so they can't be EPEAT certified. But they know most Apple fanbois will spin it as no big deal, just like you did.
Honestly not a fanboi.. Don't even own a Mac at the moment lol..

Would you rather they make a press conference every time they do something ? It's quiet cause only a few people even care.. and it's only in the news at all BECAUSE it's Apple.. I bet you if Dell, or HP did it, you'd be hard pressed to find mention of it anywhere but maybe on fringe environmental websites..

And I doubt they are using some crazy industrial strength glue.. It'll be just enough to keep the battery stationary inside the case, just like it is in the iPhone/Pod/Touch/'s.. It's inconvenient, but hardly a challenge to separate.

Fezmid said,

No offense, but I think you have blinders on. If it wasn't a big deal, and Apple was just like the other companies that ARE part of EPEAT, why would they quietly take down their EPEAT certifications? They know their stuff isn't as recyclable (ie: the battery shouldn't be held down with industrial strength glue -- which IS nearly impossible to take off), so they can't be EPEAT certified. But they know most Apple fanbois will spin it as no big deal, just like you did.

I think Neowin has hit a low when the writing staff accuses its readers for having blinders on, and spinning something like a fanboy.

I always got Apple Products because of their environmentally friendly products. This might change my next purchase.

rippleman said,
If you really love the environment, you yourself wouldn't buy electronics at all...

Okay, I guess I better take my solar panels down then.

Raa said,

Okay, I guess I better take my solar panels down then.
Wrong context.

They're contain materials that are just as bad (if not worse) than any other "electronics" when they're being disposed of.

I wish people here would realise that the review of Dell is based on PROMISES and not them actually DELIVERING on those said promises. Then again this is ground zero of Apple bashing.

assume only the macbook pro with retina ? all of their device seem to be a little bit odd, in the past apple constantly promote their product as environmental friendly. Missing something?

Being more like Engadget where they nearly always add a quirky remark at the end of their article titles

Apple has pulled out of a certification that identifies devices that are good for the environment.

I was unaware that iDevices were "good" for the environment.

Tha Bloo Monkee said,

I was unaware that iDevices were "good" for the environment.

They're not "good" because they don't positively contribute to the environment. It's best said that they're not "bad" for the environment.

harjeet said,

They're not "good" because they don't positively contribute to the environment. It's best said that they're not "bad" for the environment.

Well, they are still bad for the environment, as any computer is due to manufacturing energy and processing. It would be more accurate to say that Dell computers are better for the environment than Apple ones.

Tha Bloo Monkee said,

I was unaware that iDevices were "good" for the environment.

Maybe after recycling the Li-ion battery pack you get Lithium and can use it as fertilizer for your plants?

Love the title! I always say, who cares if the title is bad, as long as it gets the clicks! It made me want to click it.

A rather refreshing exemple of corporate selfish greed consistent with past politics
- Slavery workers conditions in manufacturing plants: check
- Blatant disregard for users (IPhone 4 antenna, remember): check
- Produce devices that cannot be serviced or repaired that are going to fill extremely toxic landfills abroad: check

StandingInAlley said,
Sorry but the title of this article is quite misleading.

You the one that need brain cancer to buy an iPhone

Gaara sama said,
apple doesn't care if the iPhone can create you brain cancer , apple only want your money nothing else.

You need brain cancer to buy an iPhone

For all the people who are taking the title seriously, it was clearly meant to make you laugh because "hates the environment" is so outrageous of a statement! It's like saying "if you're not with me, then you're against me." Only a Sith would deal in absolutes!

ggg888ggg said,
For all the people who are taking the title seriously, it was clearly meant to make you laugh because "hates the environment" is so outrageous of a statement! It's like saying "if you're not with me, then you're against me." Only a Sith would deal in absolutes!

100% correct -- I didn't mean to piss everyone off with the title and I thought making it so outrageous would make that clear. I guess not. lol

Fezmid said,

100% correct -- I didn't mean to **** everyone off with the title and I thought making it so outrageous would make that clear. I guess not. lol

maybe apple does hate the environment?

Buttus said,

maybe apple does hate the environment?

Maybe, but more likely they just like increasing their profits and controlling their devices; making the parts recyclable reduces both of those objectives.

Disappointing they feel they need to take this route. Presumably it is primarily down to the fact they're trying to make their devices more and more compact, thus rendering them less servicable / accessable / recyclable rather than the desire to go back to using terrible polluting materials in their products? Either way it seems like an enormous step backwards.

Title is a little harsh. I wouldn't say they Hate the enviro, but rather being considerate and removing themselves based on their current design intentions. I would hope Apple would still keep the enviro in mind, but if glue is necessary then go with it

wv@gt said,
Title is a little harsh. I wouldn't say they Hate the enviro, but rather being considerate and removing themselves based on their current design intentions. I would hope Apple would still keep the enviro in mind, but if glue is necessary then go with it

The title is definitely sensionalist, but the glue isn't nessecary, so at the end of the day Apple values locking out people from using their hardware the way they see fit as a higher priority than recycling properly.

wv@gt said,
Title is a little harsh. I wouldn't say they Hate the enviro, but rather being considerate and removing themselves based on their current design intentions.
It's not about hating the environment, it's about putting profit above the sustainability of the planet's resources.

They have pulled out because they no longer consider it worthwhile to be environmentally friendly, which rightly deserves criticism - especially given the size of the company. As always, it's all about profits.

hamslammer said,
Wow!! That headline is par for the course for Liberal drivel about the environment from a wanna be journalist.

Classy.

hamslammer said,
Wow!! That headline is par for the course for Liberal drivel about the environment from a wanna be journalist.

You don't know me at all! lol

hamslammer said,
Wow!! That headline is par for the course for Liberal drivel about the environment from a wanna be journalist.

LOL, you tobyjug, if you hated it that much why read the article? It got you to click didnt it so its done its job!

Mando said,
LOL, you tobyjug, if you hated it that much why read the article? It got you to click didnt it so its done its job!

No, it got people talking about the title which is derailing the subject entirely, which in turn is annoying other folks. It's just one big circle jerk of stupid.

Maybe it doesn't hate it but it sure looks like it doesn't give a **** about it. Pure Stevejobism, must be part of his four year plan.

You mention the Retina Pro having a glued battery. The batteries in the iPhone 4 are glued as well so what's new?

DomZ said,
You mention the Retina Pro having a glued battery. The batteries in the iPhone 4 are glued as well so what's new?
EPEAT doesn't monitor tablet devices, so they were never included. What's new is that Apple is taking devices that were included, and actively pulling them out.

DomZ said,
You mention the Retina Pro having a glued battery. The batteries in the iPhone 4 are glued as well so what's new?

What's confusing to me is how two things that are glue together are apparently impossible to take apart. That's news to me.

Leonick said,

What's confusing to me is how two things that are glue together are apparently impossible to take apart. That's news to me.
THIS IS 'MERICA!!! We don't undue the already glued. That requires work.

.Neo said,
"Hates the environment"

Seriously, you couldn't come up with a slightly more intelligent title?

the reasoning will come under the guise of "sensationalist titles draw hits in"

.Neo said,
"Hates the environment"

Seriously, you couldn't come up with a slightly more intelligent title?


I can picture Tim Cook just stamping on a bunch of flowers.

neufuse said,

the reasoning will come under the guise of "sensationalist titles draw hits in"

Pretty much. Neowin editors are just as bad as the main press with sensationalistic article titles. Unfortunately you just have to deal with it; they want clicks.

.Neo said,
"Hates the environment"

Seriously, you couldn't come up with a slightly more intelligent title?

Seriously, you couldn't come up with a sense of humor?

bastones said,

Pretty much. Neowin editors are just as bad as the main press with sensationalistic article titles. Unfortunately you just have to deal with it; they want clicks.

It's a joke, how people can take it so seriously is beyond me.

On topic though; being unable to recycle what could be ~6-10% of the computers in the world is a big deal, and deters me from supporting Apple.

.Neo said,
"Hates the environment"

Seriously, you couldn't come up with a slightly more intelligent title?

What would you prefer to make what they are doing sound 'better'?

Apple no longer loves the Environment

Apple doesn't hate the environment, but don't fully hate it.

Apple broke up with the environment, but wants to stay friends.

?

Really... If you intellectually have a problem with 'facts' and over sensitized wording, you might want to give Apple a piece of your mind, as they use emotions and hyperbole to create the majority of their customer base.

This is about words and manipulation and sadly, Apple is one of the most egregious companies in the world when using psycho manipulative marketing.

If you buy Apple, you are cool, trendy, don't get viruses, have a 'smarter' computer, have a 'prettier' computer, and get automatically entered elevated to a caste system of technical knowledge and understanding that you didn't earn.

They make people believe that just buying their products makes them into technical wizards that 'get' technology better than 'fools' that still buy PCs.


Bad wording, ya maybe a bit, but getting criticized by anyone that condones Apple's marketing is hypocritical.

Apple gets too many passes by giving away their crap to media companies, one headline that is 'accurate' but overly stated is not going to hurt them.

.Neo said,
"Hates the environment"

Seriously, you couldn't come up with a slightly more intelligent title?

You display name is just as original.

thenetavenger said,

What would you prefer to make what they are doing sound 'better'?

Apple no longer loves the Environment
Apple doesn't hate the environment, but don't fully hate it.
Apple broke up with the environment, but wants to stay friends.
?

Are you serious about these alternatives ? You're as bad as Christopher White, I hope you never become a journalist on this site, and anywhere else.

This title transpires unprofessionalism like I have never seen it before and I'm reading newspaper, real world news sites and tech sites every single day. The fact that it became a habit and nobody ever fix these titles is a good reason enough to close my account here.

thenetavenger said,

What would you prefer to make what they are doing sound 'better'?

Apple no longer loves the Environment

Apple doesn't hate the environment, but don't fully hate it.

Apple broke up with the environment, but wants to stay friends.

?

Or a more, "professional," title similar to The Verge's, "Apple pulls its products from EPEAT 'green' certification registry," or even Engadget's, "Apple pulls out of EPEAT green registration, may not be able to sell computers to federal agencies." Chris could have even done something more in the vein of the article's source, "Apple Removes Green Electronics Certification From Products."

All facts.

Instead, the writer took the Fox New approach, and made something up just to rile its base. Can you show me where Apple said that they hate the environment? I bet not

And we all know that if the article started off as, "Microsoft hates the environment...," you would be in here spitting nails and trying to spin it around.


Really... If you intellectually have a problem with 'facts' and over sensitized wording, you might want to give Apple a piece of your mind, as they use emotions and hyperbole to create the majority of their customer base.

This is about words and manipulation and sadly, Apple is one of the most egregious companies in the world when using psycho manipulative marketing.

If you buy Apple, you are cool, trendy, don't get viruses, have a 'smarter' computer, have a 'prettier' computer, and get automatically entered elevated to a caste system of technical knowledge and understanding that you didn't earn.

They make people believe that just buying their products makes them into technical wizards that 'get' technology better than 'fools' that still buy PCs.

It's funny that you come in here and talk about facts when you constantly err on the side of fantasy on anything that goes against your pro Microsoft chest thumping.

ALL companies use emotions and hyperbole in their advertising. They even try to make people think that they are superior to others if they buy their products instead of their competitor's. Acting as if it's just Apple is absurd. Do I need to bring up Nokia's, "The beta test is over!" campaign for the Windows Phone? Tongue and cheek, I know, but OMG how did you not know that our friends broke up? Oh, you have a crappy, "smartphone". Or how about Samsung's, "Don't be a sheep (implied Apple) buy our stuff because it's better and cooler and you get to rock out in the streets with a rock star! THE NEXT BEST THING IS ALREADY HEREEEE!"

?

I can't believe you seriously think that most of Apple's consumer base comes from their psycho manipulative advertising. There's nothing on the Internet that supports that. I looked. I think it's that you just don't want to admit that there are companies out there besides Microsoft that offer products that people buy, use, like, and go back for more. Not everyone who buys stuff subscribes to a company's marketing BS. That stuff's reserved for the trolls.

nohone said,
Seriously, you couldn't come up with a sense of humor?

I wasn't aware this was a standup comedian website. But in that case the author did a good job.

Mulsivaas said,
You display name is just as original.

That's the best you could come up with?