Apple vows to 'pioneer' a closed-loop mining supply chain

24 April, 2017, 03:29 | Author: Kristi Walker
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In this week's top stories: Apple celebrates Earth Day with a promise to stop mining completely, iPhone 8 design leaks continue, we go hands-on with NVIDIA's new Pascal drivers for Mac, and much more. First, Apple has released its own environmental progress report for 2017.

The company has also taken an array of visible steps toward corporate responsibility, from cutting the power demand of its products, to eradicating unsafe materials from its products, to attempting to address the problem of conflict minerals. Instead of using carbon, Apple is trying to replace it with wind and solar power. Thankfully, Apple seems to be aware of the impact the company has on the environment.

These efforts have won the praise from the former USA vice president and climate change activist Al Gore, who also sits on Apple's board of directors. It then checks out where the company can cut down the use concerning the effect on the environment. It's an ambitious goal that will require many years of collaboration across multiple Apple teams, our suppliers, and specialty recyclers-but our work is already under way. "One day we'd like to be able to build new products with just recycled materials, including your old products", Apple said. According to their year-long investigation, Apple iPhones and MacBooks aren't "recycled" in any meaningful sense.

Apple also continues to improve on its use of renewable energy in its facilities, reporting that in 2016, it increased renewal electricity use in its global facilities to 96 percent - up three percent from past year - reducing the company's carbon emissions by almost 585,000 metric tons. Apple uses 100 percent renewables in 24 countries and in all of its data centers. The report also talks at length about Apple Park (née spaceship), which it calls "the greenest corporate headquarters on the planet". One thing I found interesting is that Apple puts its AirPods through this same sweat test - even though the wireless earbuds aren't advertised as water or sweat-resistant.

"That means continuing to invest in ways to recover materials from our products, like Liam, our line of disassembly robots, and encouraging our customers to return products through Apple Renew, our recycling programme", says Jackson.

"One of the great things about working on this project was the ability to take complex concepts and find ways to make them approachable and amusing".

It has also focused on a different way of producing aluminium which has resulted in the iPhone 7 enclosure using 27 per cent less of the material than the iPhone 6, and emitting 60 per cent less greenhouse gas emissions.

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