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Greenpeace Praises Apple's Eco-Friendly Data Centers

Greenpeace Praises Apple's Eco-Friendly Data Centers

April 2, 2014

Greenpeace has tipped its hat to Apple in a recent report, noting that the Cupertino, Calif. company has the most eco-friendly data centers in the tech industry.

The news reached us from AppleInsider, which explains that Apple’s data centers – which span states including North Carolina and Nevada – were scored by Greenpeace across several areas, with the company securing impressive marks in each respect:

The iPhone maker scored an ‘A’ for energy transparency, commitment to renewable energy, and deployment thanks in large part to the fuel cell installation and solar farm at its datacenter in Maiden, N.C. Apple recorded a ‘B’ in the sole remaining category, energy efficiency and mitigation.

Though Apple generates as much renewable energy itself as possible, Greenpeace particularly praised the company since all of the energy it’s left having to purchase comes “through utilities from renewable sources.”

Greenpeace said: “Apple’s aggressive pursuit of its commitment to power the iCloud with 100% renewable energy has given the company the inside track among the I.T. sector’s leaders in building a green Internet. Apple has made good on its pledge by building the largest privately owned solar farms at its North Carolina data center, working with its utility in Nevada to power its upcoming data center there with solar and geothermal energy, and purchasing wind energy for its Oregon and California data centers.”

Here’s a chart outlining how Apple compares against other tech companies. As you can see, Amazon and Twitter scored particularly poorly:

In February, Greenpeace praised Apple again for limiting its use of conflict minerals like tantalum. This mineral, in particular, is mined in the Democratic Republic of the Congo where war criminals make huge profits from its sale. Apple confessed in its 2014 Supplier Responsibility Report that it’s having a harder time sourcing “conflict-free” gold, tin, and tungsten, however, due to the fact that most smelters have yet to agree to audits.

Before this, Greenpeace also commended Apple for hiring Lisa Jackson as its top environmental adviser.

In its most recent report, however, Greenpeace did have one piece of advice for Cupertino: “sharing more detail about Apple’s energy efficient designs would help the I.T. sector to learn from, and improve upon, Apple’s best efficiency practices.”

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