Apple pledges to be carbon neutral by 2030

(Image credit: gizmochina)

Apple plans to be carbon neutral by 2030, outlining a series of measures designed to reduce the environmental impact of its entire supply chain and operations.

The Cupertino-based company has published a ten year roadmap outlining plans to reduce emissions by 75 per cent and to develop carbon removal solutions for the remainder of its footprint.

Apple already uses clean energy to power its global facilities and has secured similar commitments from 70 suppliers. In addition to increasing that figure, Apple will also develop low carbon product designs, introduce recycling initiatives, and lower its own electricity needs.

Apple net carbon zero

This means that within a decade, every iPhone, iPad or Apple device sold will have net zero climate impact.

Apple’s use of renewable energy, and its reduction on the amount of hazardous chemicals used in manufacturing, has seen it score well in Greenpeace’s Guide to Greener Electronics. However, it has been criticised for making its devices difficult to repair and therefore reducing their lifespan.

However, a battery replacement programme has gone some way to alleviate these concerns as has a programme which allows independent businesses to register to perform approved iPhone repair jobs. The Apple Independent Repair Provider Program launched in the US last Autumn and is expanding to Europe and Canada.

CEO Tim Cook said he hoped that by working to a deadline that beats Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) targets by two decades, it can inspire other businesses in other industries to follow suit.

“Businesses have a profound opportunity to help build a more sustainable future, one born of our common concern for the planet we share,” he said.

“The innovations powering our environmental journey are not only good for the planet — they’ve helped us make our products more energy efficient and bring new sources of clean energy online around the world. Climate action can be the foundation for a new era of innovative potential, job creation, and durable economic growth. With our commitment to carbon neutrality, we hope to be a ripple in the pond that creates a much larger change.”

As part of its new series of commitments, Apple will also look to invest in businesses that can drive positive environmental outcomes and in communities that are disproportionately affected by climate issues. Apple recently launched a $100 million ‘Racial Equity and Justice Initiative’ which focuses on education, economic equality and criminal justice reform.

“Systemic racism and climate change are not separate issues, and they will not abide separate solutions,” added Lisa Jackson, head of environmental, policy, and social initiatives at Apple. “We have a generational opportunity to help build a greener and more just economy, one where we develop whole new industries in the pursuit of giving the next generation a planet worth calling home.”

Steve McCaskill is TechRadar Pro's resident mobile industry expert, covering all aspects of the UK and global news, from operators to service providers and everything in between. He is a former editor of Silicon UK and journalist with over a decade's experience in the technology industry, writing about technology, in particular, telecoms, mobile and sports tech, sports, video games and media.