Apple shared its ambitious vision to become carbon neutral across its entire business, including its manufacturing and supply chain, by 2030.
The company’s Vice President of Environment, Policy and Social Initiatives, Lisa Jackson, discussed the challenges and strategies behind this commitment in an interview with TechCrunch.
He said that to achieve carbon neutrality, Apple will focus on several areas, including using renewable energy sources, reducing energy consumption, and incorporating more recycled materials into its products.
The company has already made progress in increasing its use of renewable energy, with 86 per cent of its facilities worldwide currently running on clean energy.
Additionally, Apple has pledged to stop using cobalt, a mineral known for its negative environmental impact, in its battery production by 2025. Instead, the company will rely entirely on recycled cobalt by 2030.
Achieving complete carbon neutrality won’t be easy, especially considering the complexity of Apple’s global supply chain. To address this challenge, the company plans to collaborate closely with its suppliers to ensure they can meet the required standards.
According to Jackson, Apple can go first and find a new material or make a new material. But by the time it gets to a product, like Series 9 watches, it has to scale the price to make sense with the business that it runs.
Jackson emphasised that Apple’s commitment to sustainability extends beyond its own operations and includes the lifetime use of every device it sells.
The company intends to lead by example and inspire other industries to adopt similar environmentally conscious practices. She said, “Our job is to lead, to innovate, and then to help other companies.”
As part of its efforts, Apple will introduce a new label featuring a green flower symbol to indicate which products have met the company’s sustainability criteria. Furthermore, the company is exploring alternatives to leather for its accessories, opting for more eco-friendly materials instead.
While Apple’s carbon-neutral product strategy involves multiple approaches, including increased recycling, alternative shipping methods, and sustainable energy sources, the company still needs to rely on carbon offsets to account for a portion of its remaining emissions.
Apple’s dedication to becoming carbon neutral by 2030 represents a significant step towards mitigating the environmental impact of consumer electronics.
By taking a holistic approach that encompasses both its internal operations and external partnerships, the company hopes to create a positive ripple effect throughout the industry and inspire others to join them in the fight against climate change.