Apple wants to be completely carbon neutral by 2030. The robots “Daisy” and “Dave” are also used.
“This means that every Apple device will be manufactured without CO2 emissions in ten years,” said Environment Manager Lisa Jackson of the German Press Agency. The iPhone group wants to reduce the emission of climate-damaging carbon dioxide by 75 percent – and compensate for the rest with solutions to bind the greenhouse gas.
So far, Apple has operated its offices, data centers and its own production facilities entirely with renewable energies. Among the suppliers, 70 companies have now committed to switching to renewable energy sources.
An important part of the Apple plan is the increased use of recycled materials in the manufactured devices. Apple had already announced in 2017 the goal of no longer having to extract new raw materials for its technology. The annual environmental report released on Tuesday now lists progress. 28 percent of the aluminum in the devices manufactured in 2019 came from recycling. Apple had developed its own alloy, which according to the company can be used again and again without restrictions. The proportion of tin was 15 percent. “We won’t be satisfied until we get 100 percent on devices alone,” Jackson said.
A new machine is added to the “Daisy” robot, which disassembles iPhones into individual parts: “Dave” is supposed to extract rare earths and tungsten from the so-called Taptic Engines, which cause devices such as the iPhone or the Apple Watch to vibrate. 22 percent of the tungsten used last year came from recycling, it said. Reuse goes hand in hand with efforts to use fewer materials in the components. For example, printed circuit boards for the iPhone 11 have been changed so that they have 27 percent less gold-plated surface.
“Given the Covid 19 challenges, every company has to assess its future – but we see no conflict between our climate plans and economic needs,” said Jackson. Clean energy is also cheaper and more economical for Apple and its suppliers.
Other tech companies – albeit with significantly smaller hardware production dimensions – have already announced that they want to become climate neutral. Amazon is targeting this for 2040, Microsoft for 2030 – and wants to offset all CO2 emissions by 2050 since the software company was founded in 1975. Instead, Apple is focusing on helping suppliers transition to clean energy, Jackson said. Other companies that worked with these suppliers also benefited.