Apple Inc is going green. CEO Steve Jobs announced today that he is making some serious changes to make Apple greener than most of its rival companies, for the good of the planet. He made the statement after an increase in criticism from environmental groups such as Greenpeace.

Apple is not as harsh to the environment as many have been claiming. There have been some misunderstandings which have led to misinformation being published, says Jobs.

"Apple has been criticised by some environmental organisations for not being a leader in removing toxic chemicals from its new products, and for not aggressively or properly recycling its old products," he started.

"Upon investigating Apple's current practices and progress towards these goals, I was surprised to learn that in many cases Apple is ahead of, or will soon be ahead of, most of its competitors in these areas. Whatever other improvements we need to make, it is certainly clear that we have failed to communicate the things that we are doing well," he goes on.

Apple apologises

Steve Jobs went as far as to apologise to his readers for "keeping them in the dark" in terms of Apple's endeavours to become more environmentally friendly. The letter details many harmful chemicals and toxins which are being let out into the environment. It also states how Apple plans to improve things and where it stands next to its rival companies.

So while Jobs doesn't actually admit to damaging the environment, he does outline Apple's plans to become a lot more environmentally friendly.

Steve Jobs also says Apple will publish an annual green report detailing its environmental progress.

Greenpeace praises greener Apple

Meanwhile, Greenpeace has come out in support of Apple's announcement, approving the measures it's taking.

"It's not everything we asked for. Apple has declared a phase out of the worst chemicals in its product range, Brominated Fire Retardants (BFRs) and Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC), by 2008. That beats Dell and other computer manufactures' pledge to phase them out by 2009," reads a statement on the Greenpeace website.

"But while customers in the US will be able to return their Apple products for recycling knowing that their gear won't end up in the e-waste mountains of Asia and India, Apple isn't making that promise to anyone but customers in the USA. Elsewhere in the world, an Apple product today can still be tomorrow's e-waste. Other manufacturers offer worldwide takeback and recycling. Apple should too!

"Apple hasn't gotten an actual green product to market, but no other electronics manufacture has either. That's a race worthy of the wizards of Cupertino."