Apple Environmental Chief Lisa Jackson Driving Sustainability Efforts

Former EPA chief Lisa Jackson, hired earlier this year to head up Apple's environmental efforts, told a sustainability conference that she plans to get Apple to use energy more efficiently and with cleaner power in the company's data centers and other buildings.

According to GigaOm, Jackson said "Tim Cook didn't hire Lisa Jackson to be quiet and keep the status quo. We understand our responsibility and we do care."

Jackson talked about the challenges of pushing and developing sustainability projects within Apple. One of them is the challenge of collecting solid data and being able to measure projects and their success rates. This includes Apple’s method to calculate the energy use and carbon footprint of its operation and products, the manufacturing of its devices and the supply chain and customers’ use of the products. Jackson pointed to the life cycle analysis that Steve Jobs publicized back in 2009 in an effort to change the company’s image, as an example of Apple’s attention to creating sustainability metrics and data.

GigaOm says Jackson's team currently counts 17 people and she is responsible for recruiting more environmentally conscious employees from within the company to help with Apple's sustainability projects, including getting feedback on how to cut wasteful energy use.

apple_100_renewable
On a related note, DataCenterKnowledge writes about Apple continuing to grow its new Prineville, Oregon data center, constructing a new power substation to go with new buildings going in. Apple's new data center is close to a new center from Facebook.

Earlier this year, Apple said its data centers were running on 100 percent renewable energy -- solar, wind, hydro, and geothermal power -- while the company's corporate facilities are running on 75 percent renewable, up from 35 percent two years ago.

Top Rated Comments

ghettochris Avatar
104 months ago
Jackson said "Tim Cook didn't hire Lisa Jackson to be quiet and keep the status quo. We understand our responsibility and we do care."

Ghettochris always finds it amusing when people talk about themselves in the third person.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
3282868 Avatar
104 months ago
I hope Apple doesn't move further away from sustainable and recyclable materials in their products as is the case with the "new" polycarbonate iPhone 5c. I'm very passionate and active in environmental matters, and even more so with regards to the vastly changing technological world and its impact regarding e-waste. I truly want to make the world a better place in this regard, so for those who have read my posts when an environmental thread is front page news, forgive my "broken record". I truly mean only to help inform others in order for us, the "tech savvy", and for consumers, to make an impact by voting with our dollars as our buying power is the one factor that will get the necessary attention for companies to make the right choices in materials used and production waste.

Every year, Americans throw away enough paper and plastic cups, forks, and spoons to circle the equator 300 times (http://www.cleanair.org/Waste/wasteFacts.html). Plastic produces more waste from recycling and general consumer discard. Recycling produces more pollutants, including chemical stews when breaking down different products.

Recycling is not cost-efficient and annually results in a net loss. It costs $50-60 to landfill a ton versus $150+/- to recycle. Only the recycling of aluminum really makes any money. Reclaiming metals is feasible and fairly easy, whereas plastics and paper are expensive, wasteful and overly difficult. The biggest disadvantage to recycling is that it gives the consuming public a false sense of 'security'; a sense that they're doing something to benefit the environment. recycling can be bad for the environment. In fact, except for materials like metal and some glass, recycling is almost always bad for the environment. One of the best places to start is with a report from Perc.org, called the Eight Great Myths of Recycling (http://perc.org/sites/default/files/ps28.pdf). "One argument made for recycling notes that we live on a finite planet. With a growing population, we must, it seems, run out of resources."

E-waste is a major issue, especially with plastics. There are 2 plastic islands the size of Texas, one in the Pacific Ocean - the "Great Pacific garbage patch" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Pacific_garbage_patch)and one in the Indian Ocean (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indian_Ocean_garbage_patch) and more being discovered almost monthly. Newly Discovered 'Plastic Island' Shows Global Epidemic Worsening (https://www.commondreams.org/headline/2013/01/18-3)

The patch is characterized by exceptionally high concentrations of pelagic plastics, chemical sludge and other debris that have been trapped by the currents of the North Pacific Gyre. Despite its size and density, the patch is not visible from satellite photography, since it consists primarily of suspended particulates in the upper water column. Since plastics break down to even smaller polymers, concentrations of submerged particles are not visible from space, nor do they appear as a continuous debris field.

Charles Moore - TED discussion on plastic (//www.youtube.com/watch?v=en4XzfR0FE8) - 7 minutes but alarming facts on plastic toxicity and huge annual increases in waste.

As Japan has serious garbage issues, a Japanese scientist invented a machine that breaks any plastic down into oil! I've mentioned the on MacRumors before as it is an issue the tech industry needs to take into serious consideration. This device is no larger than a microwave and uses less energy than a coffee maker. Read and watch the short 5 min video, if for nothing else than the tech as it's amazing. Hoping quick mainstream adoption lowers the $10k price tag quickly enough for residential use and can make up for its price by reusing the oil. Used in large industrial recycling centers would be amazing!

Plastic to oil fantastic (http://ourworld.unu.edu/en/plastic-to-oil-fantastic/)

Aluminum is currently the best material for mass production in products, especially tech due to e-waste. Bauxite being the most common aluminum ore. Refinement uses much less energy to produce, and is improving with recent advancements, especially compared to the Hall-Héoult Process (the major industrial process aluminum extraction). Aluminum is theoretically 100% recyclable without any loss of its natural qualities and requires only 5% of the energy used to produce aluminum from ore, though a significant part (up to 15% of the input material) is lost as dross (ash-like oxide). Recycled aluminum is known as secondary aluminum, but maintains the same physical properties as primary aluminum. Secondary aluminum is produced in a wide range of formats and is employed in 80% of alloy injections. The process produces aluminum billets, together with a highly complex waste material, which can be reused as a filler in asphalt and concrete.

If you got this far, thank you. Collectively we can make a difference in plastic usage by "voting with our dollars". We don't need more waste; plastic in tech produces much more waste (and chemical waste from wires, displays, etc) than other naturally occurring metals and smelting. It's great Apple is trying to produce a lower cost iPhone, however plastic shouldn't be much cheaper than smelting aluminum, especially as Apple has dedicated plants for product shells using green energy.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
nick42983 Avatar
104 months ago
Exactly, as long as she's fighting the "green" fight, she can do no wrong. Terrible that companies like Apple have to hire these androgynous bureaucrats to cover their a$$ from this administration.

If Apple really wanted to make a difference in the environment, they'd throw their weight behind something like the TerraPower nuclear reactor, which Bill Gates is promoting. http://articles.economictimes.indiatimes.com/2013-09-25/news/42394809_1_uranium-nuclear-reactor-bill-gates
(http://articles.economictimes.indiatimes.com/2013-09-25/news/42394809_1_uranium-nuclear-reactor-bill-gates)

Apple's initiatives, spearheaded by Lisa Jackson, are window dressing to appease Green Peace, the Sierra Club and other extremist, environmental organizations from blackmailing them with false data: http://www.datacenterknowledge.com/archives/2012/04/17/apple-greenpeaces-cloud-math-is-busted/ (http://www.datacenterknowledge.com/archives/2012/04/17/apple-greenpeaces-cloud-math-is-busted/)


Pleased that Apple hired an ethical and upstanding leader like Lisa Jackson.

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/epa-chief-lisa-jackson-steps-article-1.1228116
http://www.bizpacreview.com/2012/12/27/epa-chief-resigns-amid-controversy-and-scandal-12414
http://dailycaller.com/2013/04/10/lisa-jackson-speaks-candidly-on-secret-epa-email-account/
http://www.humanevents.com/2012/12/26/hudson-what-is-epa-chief-lisa-jackson-hiding/
http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/lisa-p-jackson/gIQAf14X9O_topic.html
http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/jun/2/newly-released-emails-show-epa-directors-extensive/?page=all
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
dotheDVDeed Avatar
104 months ago
pffft... Green? Design an all-in-one desktop computer I can replace the motherboard/cpu instead of having the computer being tossed in the dump.

At least let me upgrade the RAM and the SSD/HD.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
pubwvj Avatar
104 months ago
Bah humbug. This is all lip service. If Apple is going to do sustainability and environmentally friendly they would do real legacy support for old hardware and software. Keeping good old equipment useable by supporting it means resources aren't wasted building new equipment. It is insane that Apple fails to support the original iPhone and such, the PowerBooks, etc. Five years is a blink in time. There is no good reason for Apple to stop supporting older software either.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
toadc69 Avatar
104 months ago
Round of applause....

I hope Apple doesn't move further away from sustainable and recyclable materials in their products as is the case with the "new" polycarbonate iPhone 5c. .

If the Macbook line (MBPr & Air specifically) are any indication, I'd be inclined towards NOT holding my breath waiting for Apple to give sustainabilty and recyclable materials a seat at their product manufacturing table.

To quote Kyle Wiens, Unfixable Computers Are Leading Humanity Down a Perilous Path/ (http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2012/06/apples-unfixable-devices/)

I realize Apple has done more than most and I admit to being part of the problem (with my Massive Samsung LCD TV, Macbook Pro, iPhones, etc)

At the same time, spending time, $$$, and energy on building devices with their display fused to the glass, and RAM soldered to the logic board — making future memory upgrades impossible, or gluing the battery to the case, proprietary cables etc. This energy could arguably be better spent on innovation and sustainability and other forward thinking principles.

I'm happy to hear that Apple has an executive department 17 strong and growing. But detect a hint of green-washy odor to this latest announcement, in light of some of the above mentioned product releases the past 4 years.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

apple california streaming event

Apple Event Announced: 'California Streaming' on September 14 With iPhone 13, Apple Watch Series 7 Expected

Tuesday September 7, 2021 9:03 am PDT by
Apple today announced that it will be holding a special event on Tuesday, September 14 at 10:00 a.m. The event will take place at the Steve Jobs Theater on the Apple Park campus in Cupertino, California. As with WWDC and last year's fall events, this new event will be held digitally with no members of the media invited to attend in person. Apple will likely provide pre-taped segments for...
Apple Prefer Lightning Over USB C Feature

iPhone Sticking With Lightning Port Over USB-C for 'Foreseeable Future'

Tuesday March 2, 2021 9:32 am PST by
Apple will retain the Lightning connector on the iPhone for the "foreseeable future," with no intention of switching to USB-C, according to reliable analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. In spite of much of the industry moving toward USB-C, Apple will not be using it to replace the Lightning connector on the iPhone 13, or indeed on any iPhone model for the time being. In a note seen by MacRumors yesterday,...
iphone 12 colors 2021

iPhone 12 Colors: Deciding on The Right Color

Thursday November 5, 2020 8:35 am PST by
The iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro arrived in October 2020 in a range of color options, with entirely new hues available on both devices, as well as some popular classics. The 12 and 12 Pro have different color choices, so if you have your heart set on a particular shade, you might not be able to get your preferred model in that color. iPhone 12 mini and iPhone 12 The iPhone 12 mini and iPhone...
it home ecommerce app iphone 13

iPhone 13 to Launch on September 17, AirPods 3 on September 30, Claims Report

Wednesday August 25, 2021 2:42 am PDT by
Apple may be planning to launch the iPhone 13 on Friday, September 17 and third-generation AirPods on Thursday, September 30, according to an image of an e-commerce app discovered by Chinese language site IT Home. The screenshot, originally posted by Weibo account @PandaIsBald, suggests all four iPhone 13 models will go on sale on September 17, followed by the AirPods 3 on September 30....
youtube apple tv

YouTube Discontinuing 3rd-Generation Apple TV App, AirPlay Still Available

Wednesday February 3, 2021 3:09 pm PST by
YouTube is planning to stop supporting its YouTube app on the third-generation Apple TV models, where YouTube has long been available as a channel option. A 9to5Mac reader received a message about the upcoming app discontinuation, which is set to take place in March.Starting early March, the YouTube app will no longer be available on Apple TV (3rd generation). You can still watch YouTube on...
original iphone

Phil Schiller Says iPhone Was 'Earth-Shattering' Ten Years Ago and Remains 'Unmatched' Today

Monday January 9, 2017 7:15 am PST by
To commemorate the tenth anniversary of the iPhone, Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller sat down with tech journalist Steven Levy for a wide-ranging interview about the smartphone's past, present, and future. The report first reflects upon the iPhone's lack of support for third-party apps in its first year. The argument inside Apple was split between whether the iPhone should be a closed...
studio buds family

Beats Studio Buds Debuting Today With Active Noise Cancellation, Stemless Design, and More for $150

Monday June 14, 2021 8:00 am PDT by
We've seen a lot of teasers about the Beats Studio Buds over the past month since they first showed up in Apple's beta software updates, and today they're finally official. The Beats Studio Buds are available to order today in red, white, and black ahead of a June 24 ship date, and they're priced at $149.99. The Studio Buds are the first Beats-branded earbuds to truly compete with AirPods...
maroon5memories

Apple Collaborates With Maroon 5 to Add 'Memories' Song to Photos App

Wednesday September 25, 2019 12:02 pm PDT by
Apple has teamed up with Maroon 5 to add the group's new song "Memories" to the Memories feature in the Photos app, allowing it to be used for photo slide show creations, reports Billboard. "Memories" will be available as a soundtrack option for a limited time and it is available to iPhone and iPad users running the latest iOS 13 and iPadOS software. Memories in the Photos app are created ...
ulysses Blog Publishing

Ulysses 22 Brings New Blogging Options and Visual Customizations

Monday March 22, 2021 5:24 am PDT by
Popular writing app Ulysses today received its 22nd major release, introducing new publishing features and additional options for users to customize the visual appearance of their writing environment. As well as providing a focused writing environment, Ulysses offers ways to publish texts from within the app to various blogging platforms. Version 22 adds the ability to publish to Micro.blog, ...
affinity designer contour tool

Serif Updates Affinity Photo, Designer, and Publisher With New Tools and Functions

Thursday February 4, 2021 1:58 am PST by
Serif today announced across-the-board updates for its popular suite of Affinity creative apps, including Affinity Photo, Affinity Designer, and the Apple award-winning Affinity Publisher for Mac, all of which were among the first professional creative suites to be optimized for Apple's new M1 chip. "After another year which saw record numbers of people switching to Affinity, it's exciting to...