Greenpeace says Apple's clean energy policies are 'significantly improved'

in General Discussion edited January 2014
Greenpeace admitted on Thursday that Apple's clean energy policies have "significantly improved," though the environmental activist organization still takes issue with Apple's reliance on coal power for iCloud services.

The organization made a post on its official blog to highlight the release of a new Greenpeace International analysis, which found that Apple "lacks a plan that outlines a realistic path to eliminate its reliance on coal." The report is entitled, "A Clean Energy Road Map for Apple."

Greenpeace opted to re-score Apple because of what the group called "ambitious and public commitments to clean energy."

In the "Road Map," Greenpeace now gives Apple a score of 22.6 percent on its "Clean Energy Index," up from April's score of 15.3 percent. Apple's grades went from 'F' to 'D' in "Infrastructure Sitting," and 'D' to 'C' in "Energy Efficiency & GHG Mitigation," as well as "Renewables & Advocacy." Apple's grade of 'D' remained unchanged in "Energy Transparency."

In its report, Greenpeace offered a list of steps that the organization believes would "indicate if (Apple) is truly on the path to meet its ambitious goals." They are:
  • Choose a renewable-powered local utility for its Oregon data centre, not buy renewable energy credits from coal-powered Pacific Power.
  • Use renewable electricity from onsite generation to directly power its North Carolina facility, and use grid power solely for backup, rather than selling its renewable electricity to Duke Energy.
  • Secure a sustainable source of biogas to directly power its fuel cells for North Carolina.
  • Retire renewable energy credits from electricity generated onsite in North Carolina
  • Invest directly in new renewable energy generation in North Carolina rather than buying renewable credits to "green" Duke Energy;s dirty electricity.
  • Demand Duke Energy eliminate its mountaintop coal removal operations from Apple?s electricity supply chain, and demand that Duke invest in new renewable energy generation capacity, not retrofitting and extending the lifetime of dirty coal plants.
  • Adopt a data center siting policy that prioritizes access to renewable energy for any future iCloud data centers.
Greenpeace's reassessment of Apple was prompted by the company's announcement in May that its iCloud data center in Maiden, N.C., will be powered entirely by renewable energy by the end of 2012. The feat will be accomplished with the construction of two new solar array installations around the existing facility, as well as high-energy cells and an advanced solar tracking system.

Greenpeace's initial "How Clean is Your Cloud?" report, issued in April, accused Apple of lagging behind other technology companies like Facebook and Google in utilizing environmentally friendly power for its cloud-based services. Apple, however, rejected the estimates in Greenpeace's study, and provided its own figures, which claimed that renewable energy would provide more than 50 percent of the center's power needs than was originally projected, even before Apple announced its plans to rely entirely on renewable energy at its Maiden facility.

The updated report issued by Greenpeace on Thursday was Apple-specific, as no other technology companies saw their grades or key sustainability criteria changed. The organization said it plans to re-evaluate Microsoft and Amazon in light of any action or inaction in a subsequent report later this year.


  • Reply 1 of 61
    Wow Greenpeace. Way to go. You certainly showed them. /s
  • Reply 2 of 61
    jd_in_sbjd_in_sb Posts: 1,463member
    When Greenpeace gives the most environmentally friendly tech company a "D" it tells me that they are crying wolf.
  • Reply 3 of 61
    kpluckkpluck Posts: 500member

    I know with all the news coming across the AppleInsider editorial desk, it is hard to figure out what is worthy of being posted on the site. To help you out, I have developed a clever filter. When applied to any story, it will let you know if it is worth mentioning.


    If you see the words "Greenpeace says" in the article title or body copy, it can safely be ignored as it will contain nothing of value.


    Oh, and "your welcome".



  • Reply 4 of 61
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 42,762member
    Screw 'em. Who cares about Greenpeace when they've lied about and ignored the things Apple has done for the environment in the past?

    Not to mention the breaking and entering.
  • Reply 5 of 61

    The "Coal" plant in that image is a Nuclear power plant, and the massive amounts of "smoke" going into the air? That's water vapor.

  • Reply 6 of 61
    tyler82tyler82 Posts: 668member
    **** off.
    The U.S. uses coal for about 20-25% of its energy use. Solar is around 1%. Apple is far above the national average for renewables (with their new data center in North Carolina) and should be celebrated as a huge success story. Apple has always been a progressive company in practice and philosophy. It's those wonderful San Francisco values.
  • Reply 7 of 61
    crowleycrowley Posts: 5,299member

    So much vitriol against Greenpeace.  You'd think Apple fanboys would be more forgiving of the occasional bit of hyperbole, exaggeration and truth stretching giving some of the nonsense that gets spouted during Apple launch events.



    Greenpeace aren't claiming that renewable energy is magical, they're just trying to effect change, and they do that by putting pressure on the most high profile targets.  No one at Apple is in pain or suffering because of Greenpeace's actions, and if Apple is "the most environmentally friendly tech company" then they should be reading Greenpeace's publications with interest, as they're clearly on the same side.

  • Reply 8 of 61
    Yeah, what we really need is for everyone to stop asking questions, stop asking for accountabity, stop caring about things and proceed through life as half-witted slaves to the labor lords that command there every action. That would be just GRAND.

    Green Peace is far from perfect, but they're about the only counter ballast we have going, and they're a big step up from the terrorists at the Sierra Club. Only a complete fool would think Green Peace were the bad guys, with some evil, hidden agenda. You Glenn Beck hystericals make me cringe.
  • Reply 9 of 61
    msimpsonmsimpson Posts: 452member

    And who is auditing Greenpeace?

  • Reply 10 of 61
    xzuxzu Posts: 139member

    Yes we all understand GreenPeace hates Duke Energy and Apple is in the middle.... Lets import more photovoltaics from China ASAP.

  • Reply 11 of 61
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 5,749member

    We need to be aware that Greenpeace won't be satisfied until we are all back in mud huts tilling the soil to eek out a meager existence. Nothing any company or any government does will ever be good enough for them. They are left wing extremists in every sense of the word. They are quintessential environmental wackos who believe human beings are a cancer on Gaia that needs to be excised. They constantly lash out at Apple but you can bet your paycheck they all have iPhones, iPads

  • Reply 12 of 61

    Would Apple be as environmentally conscious today if not for Greenpeace? Hard to say.


    I can say with confidence, though, that Greenpeace has shone a light into some very dark places over the years and has helped considerably in cleaning up this planet.


    Apple is a big boy, it can take the criticism. There is always room for improvement.

  • Reply 13 of 61
    kkerstkkerst Posts: 330member


    Originally Posted by Gm7Cadd9 View Post

    The "Coal" plant in that image is a Nuclear power plant, and the massive amounts of "smoke" going into the air? That's water vapor.

    Greenpeace is a joke. These morons will never understand that "renewable" fuel will never match the amount of output from a traditional coal/nuke plant. They're clueless, and you just proved it. 

  • Reply 14 of 61
    chudqchudq Posts: 43member

    nothing is clean in this industrialized world. what energy are used to make wind turbo equipments? Can you trace down the dirty behind?

  • Reply 15 of 61
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 42,762member
    xzu wrote: »
    Lets import more photovoltaics from China ASAP.

    Made via unregulated industrialized practices… :lol:
  • Reply 16 of 61
    jragostajragosta Posts: 10,473member
    gm7cadd9 wrote: »
    The "Coal" plant in that image is a Nuclear power plant, and the massive amounts of "smoke" going into the air? That's water vapor.

    Excellent point. Don't rely on Greenpeace for technical information.
    kkerst wrote: »
    Greenpeace is a joke. These morons will never understand that "renewable" fuel will never match the amount of output from a traditional coal/nuke plant. They're clueless, and you just proved it. 

    You might want to check your facts before throwing darts.

    Hydro (well regarded as a renewable energy source) already accounts for a significant percentage of our energy - certainly many times a traditional coal or nuke plant.

    Even renewables like wind and solar are generating more power than a traditional coal or nuke plant.

    Now, it's true that it's unlikely that renewables are unlikely to replace a large portion of coal or nuclear power any time soon, but don't understate their value.
  • Reply 17 of 61
    seankillseankill Posts: 323member
    In reply to the nuclear power plant comment

    Very true.
    You should teach a class for them. May take them months to understand.
  • Reply 18 of 61
    maestro64maestro64 Posts: 3,987member

    Last time I check nuclear power plants (shown in the Greenpeace ad) do not generate grey clouds of smoke only water vapor clouds. Oh I get it, they can not tell the difference between a smoke stack of a coal plant to a cooling tower of a nuclear plant.


    In addition most coal fire power plans do not generate gray clouds of smoke either, they clean all that out before they come out of the stack, it the more invisible gases that come out that are of concerns 

  • Reply 19 of 61
    ajcajc Posts: 3member


    Originally Posted by chudq View Post

    nothing is clean in this industrialized world. what energy are used to make wind turbo equipments? Can you trace down the dirty behind?


    Errrr, yeah people can and have traced down the dirty:



    "These calculations show that, during its lifetime, the wind turbine allows us to recover nearly 31 times the environmental contamination caused by its manufacture, start-up, operation and decommissioning"


    - A quote from this paper.
  • Reply 20 of 61
    replicantreplicant Posts: 121member

    Is it me or it's a bit harsh to take issue with Apple using electricity from coal? 

    What is Apple suppose to do? Build their own power grid from Solar and Wind? Really Greenpeace?

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