Apple still scores low in clean energy despite coal-free pledge

By Editor


Apple still scores low in clean energy despite coal-free pledge

Greentech Lead America: According to a new Greenpeace
International analysis, Apple still lacks a plan that outlines a realistic path
to eliminate its reliance on coal to power its iCloud. Apple has made
significant improvements in its clean energy policies recently but the company
still gets low scores for its energy choices when compared with sector leaders.

Recently Apple announced its data centers will be
coal-free and powered by 100 percent renewable energy. The analysis, “A Clean
Energy Road Map for Apple” updates the scores to account for Apple’s new
announcements and found that Apple’s plans to make its three existing data
centers “coal-free” are still far from complete.

“Apple has the potential to set a new bar with its
coal-free iCloud commitment, but its plans to reach this goal are still mostly
talk and not enough walk,” said Gary Cook, Greenpeace International senior IT

However, Apple’s clean energy score improved to 22.6
percent from 15.3 percent, and its grades in the “Renewables and Advocacy” and
“Energy Efficiency and Greenhouse Gas Mitigation” categories correspondingly
improved to Cs from Ds. Apple received a D for its “Energy Transparency” and a
D in the “Infrastructure Siting” category.

Apple’s coal and nuclear energy scores decreased, but
could go down more if Apple were to reveal viable plans for how it will power
its rapidly expanding data centers without the use of coal. It now uses 33.5
percent coal energy to power its cloud, down from 55.1 percent in April, and
11.6 percent nuclear energy, down from 27.8 in April.

Apple has plans to
install solar panels at its data center in Maiden, North Carolina. The company
says it will produce 60 percent of the electricity for the first phase of
its data center from solar panels and fuel cells and will turn to
regional renewable energy providers for the remaining 40 percent.

Apple buys electricity from Duke Energy, which relies
heavily on coal to generate power. The analysis points that Apple cannot be
coal-free without pushing Duke toward that goal as well.  

Greenpeace International suggests that Apple should
demand that Duke provide it with clean energy, not mountaintop removal
coal. Protesters against mountain top removal mining in Appalachia, urged
Apple to demand that Duke abandon coal from mountaintop removal that is killing
people and destroying communities in central Appalachia.

More than 250,000 customers of Apple, Amazon and
Microsoft have written to the companies asking for a cleaner cloud since
Greenpeace launched its Clean Our
Cloud campaign on April 18.

Meanwhile, Apple told the nonprofit EPEAT, short for
Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool, to remove its products from
its registry. It also plans to stop submitting its products to EPEAT for
environmental ratings.

Apple’s withdrawal from the environmental ratings
registry has prompted San Francisco city to stop buying its computers because
the city’s rules require that laptops, computers and monitors comply with the
registry’s requirements.

[email protected] 


Latest News