Thursday, October 8th14.2°C

Apple unveils free recycling of all its devices, vows to increase reliance on renewable energy

SAN FRANCISCO - Apple is offering free recycling of all its used products and vowing to power all of its stores, offices and data centres with renewable energy to reduce the pollution caused by its devices and online services.

The iPhone and iPad maker is detailing its efforts to cultivate a greener Apple Inc. in an environmental section on the company's website that debuted Monday. The site highlights the ways that the Cupertino, Calif., company is increasing its reliance on alternative power sources and sending less electronic junk to landfills.

Apple had already been distributing gift cards at some of its 420 worldwide stores in exchange for iPhones and iPods still in good enough condition to be resold. Now, all of the company's stores will recycle any Apple product at no charge. Gift cards won't be handed out for recycled products deemed to have little or no resale value.

The offer covers a wide array of electronics that aren't supposed to be dumped in landfills because of the toxins in them. In the past seven years alone, Apple has sold more than 1 billion iPhones, iPods, iPads and Mac computers.

The new initiative, timed to coincide with Tuesday's annual celebration of Earth Day, strives to position Apple as an environmental steward amid the technological whirlwind of gadgets and Internet services that have been drawing more electricity from power plants that primarily run on natural gas and coal.

Technology products and services accounted for about 2 per cent of worldwide emissions in 2012, roughly the same as the airline industry, according to statistics cited by environmental protection group Greenpeace in a report released earlier this month. Some of biggest electricity demands come from huge data centres that house the stacks of computers that process search requests, store photos and email and stream video.

These online services, often dubbed "cloud computing," collectively consume more electricity than all but five countries — China, the U.S., Japan, India and Russia.

As the world's largest technology company, Apple is trying to hatch more environmental solutions than problems.

"What the company wants to do is use all our innovation and all of our expertise to make the planet more secure and make the environment better," Lisa Jackson, Apple's vice-president of environmental initiatives, said in a Monday interview. Jackson ran the Environmental Protection Agency under President Obama before joining Apple last June.

Apple CEO Tim Cook underscored the commitment by narrating a 1 minute, 44 second video about the company's efforts to protect the environment. "To us, better is a force of nature," Cook says in the video.

The campaign appears to be more than just public relations stunt, based on Greenpeace's high praise for Apple in its recent review of the technology industry's environmental responsibility.

Among the 19 companies covered in the report, Greenpeace described Apple as "the most innovative and most aggressive in pursuing its commitment to be 100 per cent renewably powered." Greenpeace also gave high marks to Apple rival, Google Inc., and Facebook Inc., which makes one of the most popular apps on the iPhone and iPad.

All four of Apple's data centres, which are located in North Carolina, Oregon, Nevada and California, already rely entirely on renewable energy, the company said. The electricity comes from a variety of alternative sources, including biogas, as well as wind, solar and hydro power.

That means whenever people are interacting with Apple's iTunes store, sending messages or engaging in video chats, they "can feel comfortable that they are not adding any carbon pollution to the atmosphere," Jackson said.

About 94 per cent of the power in Apple's offices in the world is now supplied by renewable energy sources, up from 35 per cent in 2010, according to the company. Apple is building a new 2.8-million-square-foot headquarters in Cupertino that will be powered solely by renewable energy when it's completed in 2016.

About 120 of Apple's U.S. stores, or nearly half of the outlets in the country, run entirely on renewable energy. The stores running on renewable energy include locations in New York, Chicago, San Francisco and Santa Monica, Calif. The company isn't specifying a timetable for meeting its goal to convert its other 300 stores in the world to renewable energy.



The Canadian Press

Read more Business News

Recent Trending

Today's Market
S&P TSX13892.14+23.79
S&P CDNX544.50+2.05
S&P 5001996.57+0.74
CDN Dollar0.7687+0.0036
Natural Gas2.522+0.048

Okanagan Companies
Pacific Safety0.225+0.015
QHR Technologies Inc1.23-0.02
Metalex Ventures0.05+0.00
Russel Metals21.62-1.50
Copper Mountain Mining0.60-0.03
Colorado Resources0.075+0.005
ReliaBrand Inc0.019+0.016
Sunrise Resources Ltd0.02+0.00
Mission Ready Services0.08-0.01
Decisive Dividend Corp3.11-0.10
Diamcor Mining0.95+0.07



2207697944 Hewetson
3 bedrooms 3 baths
more details
Click here to feature your property
Please wait... loading

Income for life?

Photo: Thinkstock.comIn almost every conversation I have with clients these days, the topic swings to interest rates. What direction they’re going, how long will they stay where they are and how...

Perfect (reno'd) home

Photo: Thinkstock.comHow many times have you found a home in the perfect location, but it needs too much work as per the home inspection? There is a great program available through most lenders that w...

5 Claim misconceptions

Photo: Thinkstock.comIf you have been hurt in an accident or as a result of medical negligence you will likely look to your friends and family for some advice on how to deal with the situation. These ...



Member of BC Press Council