May 13, 2015

Apple Promises To Use 100% Renewable Energy In All China Factories

Apple announced on Monday that it will expand its environmental protection and clean energyplans in China. Its green initiatives' goals will include using 100 percent of renewable energy to operate all of its factories.

Apple's manufacturing facilities in China have recently received much media criticism due to the company's environmental practices and labor practices in the past.

Apple's new environmental initiatives include a 5-year partnership with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) to protect 1 million acres (4,046 sq. km) of forests, according to a WWF press release. The tech giant can harvest the trees for materials, but the process must be through sustainable energy.

China is now the largest timber importer in the world, according to Gizmodo. This highlights the importance of boosting Apple's production of sustainable paper products.

Apple has recently attempted to become a leader in environmental protection. One goal is to power all of its worldwide operations with 100 percent renewable energy. Another objective is a "net-zero impact" on Earth's sustainable virgin fiber.

China itself has plans to improve the country's infamous air pollution. It is currently the world's biggest producer of greenhouse gasses.

China has promised that the country's greenhouse emissions will peak by 2030. It also hopes to boost its use of renewable energy to 20 percent by the same year.

Lisa Jackson, an Apple vice president, has stated that forests are renewal resources. The company wants to protect and create enough "sustainable working forest."

However, critics refer to Apple's promises as "greenwashing" methods. Apple is using environmental issues to counter bad public relations regarding its controversial treatment of factory workers.

Still, Apple CEO Tim Cook has stated that fighting global warming is a "core value" of the tech company. In fact, 87 percent of Apple's worldwide operations are powered by renewable energy.

Last month Apple made a forest protection deal in the U.S. similar to the one in China with WWF. It conserves working forestland threatened by real estate development.

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