Greenpeace has released its eighteenth annual "Guide to Greener Electronics," and for the first time ever, Indian firm Wipro tops the list of "greenest" technology firms. Although still highly ranked, Apple fell slightly due to a lack of transparency.
In a blog post about the guide, Greenpeace stated:
Wipro, an Indian firm, tops our latest edition of the guide due to its embrace of renewable energy and advocacy for greener energy policies in India. The company also scored well for post-consumer e-waste collection for recycling and for phasing out hazardous substances from its products. Wipro has the set the bar for the sector and it’s time for its competitors to beat that mark.
Taiwanese computer maker Acer was the most improved company in the guide, moving up nine spots to No. 4 for engaging with its suppliers on greenhouse gas emissions, hazardous substances, conflict minerals and fibre sourcing. HP (2), Nokia (3) and Dell (5) round out the top five. Apple dropped slightly from No. 5 in last year’s edition to No. 6, and Blackberry maker RIM did not improve from its rock-bottom 16th ranking.
Computerworld's Agam Shah reported, "Wipro, which is based in India and known best as an IT services company, has a small hardware business. The company has increased its commitment to using renewable energy resources and has taken strides to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, Greenpeace said. Wipro jumped over Hewlett-Packard, which topped the previous guide released in November last year. Wipro also scored high for recycling, supply chain and product take-back programs, according to the study. Wipro was followed by Hewlett-Packard, which was a leader in discouraging use of materials like tungsten, tin and gold coming from conflict areas."
"Apple saw its environmental friendliness slip a little over the last year, according to a new study from Greenpeace," noted CNET's Don Reisinger. He added, "Apple and Greenpeace have always had a love-hate relationship. While Steve Jobs was running Apple, he and the environmental watchdog group had a public spat over just how green his company's products were. However, Jobs was also instrumental in making sure that Apple's products were environmentally friendly and launched a program in which his company would analyze how 'green' its products were each year. By January 2010, Greenpeace was laudatory of Apple's efforts, saying that the company's products, which were completely free of polyvinyl chloride plastic (PVC), were standards by which all other products in the industry should be judged."
The Economic Times quoted Greenpeace International IT analyst Casey Harrell, who said, "Given the massive energy crisis around the world including caused by depleting and polluting fossil fuel, the next big environmental challenge for consumer electronics companies is to reduce their carbon pollution." He added, "Companies should work with their suppliers to implement more efficient manufacturing processes and to power the supply chain with renewable energy, not fossil fuels, just as they have successfully done to reduce the toxic materials in electronics."