Apple Abandons Green Manufacturing Standards for Notebooks and Desktops
Despite previous advertising highlighting Apple's "design with the environment in mind", it has now officially withdrawn all of its notebooks and desktops from the Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT), the leading green consumer electronics standard for notebooks, desktops and monitors. It has been registered with EPEAT since 2007.
EPEAT is designed to mitigate the negative environmental and social impacts of electronics manufacturing by requiring that products meet certain environmental criteria , which includes how recyclable it is, how much energy it uses, and how it’s designed and manufactured. Apple had previously been awarded the highest gold rating for many of its products, which means that it fulfills all 23 criteria, as well as 75% of optional criteria.
Part of EPEAT's standard lays out particular requirements for product 'Disassemble-ability', which requires that, for recycling purposes, a product's “external enclosures, chassis, and electronic subassemblies shall be removable with commonly available tools or by hand.” The new Macbook Pro clearly does not meet this criteria.
All U.S. government bodies, as well as many schools, universities and corporations have a policy to purchase only EPEAT-certified products, which could greatly affect Apple's future sales; expect some backlash too from environmentally minded consumers.