Consumer electronics companies still not green says Greenpeace

Greenpeace reports says consumer electronics companies paying lip service to environmental issues

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By  Mark Sutton Published  November 24, 2008

Greenpeace has attacked consumer electronics vendors for talking about green issues without making significant commitment to reducing environmental impact.

The environmental pressure group has just published the tenth edition of its Guide to Greener Electronics, which it says shows that very few companies are taking adequate steps to address the impact they have on the environment.

The guide, which began in August 2006, shows that while consumer electronics companies have made some progress on reducing the amount of toxic and non-recyclable materials used in devices and set up schemes for recycling, they still lag in plans address their usage of energy and carbon emissions.

The worst offenders on environmental issues were Lenovo, Microsoft and Nintendo, who along with Motorola, Dell, Apple, Samsung, and LG Electronics were all criticized in the latest report for failing to put in place plans to cut emissions. Worst offenders on environmental issues were Lenovo, Microsoft and Nintendo.

The most environmentally friendly companies were Nokia, Sony Ericsson and Toshiba, with Nokia receiving praise for using renewable energy for 25% of its total electricity use and committing to reaching 50% by 2010.

Fujitsu Siemens Computers, Philips and Sharp were credited for supporting a high level of cuts in greenhouse gases, while only Philips and HP made a commitment to making absolute reductions in their own greenhouse gas emissions.

Mel Francis International Climate & Energy campaigner for Greenpeace commented: “Sadly it appears that the consumer electronics industry is much better at rhetoric than facing the reality that absolute emission cuts are urgently needed. It is disappointing that such innovative and fast-changing companies are moving so slowly, when they could be turning the regulation we need on global emissions into a golden business opportunity.”

The industry did score highly on reducing energy consumption of products, with over half of all companies in the survey getting half marks or more.

Fujitsu Siemens Computers, Philips and Sharp were credited for supporting a high level of cuts in greenhouse gases, while only Philips and HP made a commitment to making absolute reductions in their own greenhouse gas emissions.

“Greenpeace is calling for all companies to eliminate e-waste and get serious on energy issues. It’s not good enough to just simply comply with regulation – to be truly green, the sector must step up to the challenge and show leadership,” said Iza Kruszewska, Greenpeace International Toxics Campaigner.

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