Apple, which has been in a tight horse race with Exxon Mobil as the most valuable company in the world is hopefully a harbinger of things to come in the world of corporate behemoths and their adoption of environmentally responsible operations. In fact, 25 multinational companies are leading the world in green transformation. As for Apple, their website provides detailed information on their environmental footprint for all the world to see and it is impressive.
Reducing Apple’s Carbon Footprint
Estimates are Apple’s total carbon footprint, defined as the total amount of greenhouse gas produced directly and indirectly by a company, was 30.9 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions in 2012. As is clear from the above illustration Apple includes not only emissions from its facilities but uses a total lifecycle assessment analysis to determine the full extent of greenhouse gas emissions. Apple, as usual, is a bit ahead of the game in taking this wide perspective approach; many manufacturers report only on their facilities.
Apple and the Enviornment
For Apple the product lifecycle includes manufacturing, transportation, use, and recycling of products and represents 98% of their carbon footprint. The remainder of emissions are classified as “facilities” and represent only 2% of the carbon footprint. Apple includes in its carbon emission estimates the extraction of raw materials and product assembly which makes up 61% of their total greenhouse gas emissions.
Naturally Apple must reduce their carbon footprint by improving product lifecycle performance: designing products with less material, reducing packaging, eliminating toxic substances, recycling, and being as energy efficient as possible.
Apple also looks at its emissions in terms of kilograms of carbon dioxide (CO2) per dollar of revenues.
More Information Available
For more information on how Apple measures performance and individual product environment reports go here.