Apple Says it Cut Greenhouse Emissions in Half Since 2015

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Key Takeaways

  • Apple's latest environment report says it cut emissions by 55% since 2015.
  • The company is also making progress on recycled batteries and other materials.
  • The company aims to be overall carbon neutral by 2030.

Apple said in its latest Enviromental Progress Report that it had cut total greenhouse gas emissions by over 55% since 2015.

The company largely attributed the reductions to a clean energy transition throughout its supply chain. Partners avoided almost 1.7 million metric tons of carbon emissions in 2023. That’s up 25% from 2022, the iPhone maker said. Apple added that it hoped to reduce the environmental impact of industrial processes like flat-panel display manufacturing.

Apple also pointed to its ongoing carbon removal projects, recycling efforts, and product design improvements. About 56% of the cobalt in the firm’s batteries were recycled in 2023, or more than twice the amount from the year before. Almost a quarter (24%) of lithium in batteries were recycled.

Apple has already crossed a few environmental milestones with its devices in recent months. Certain combinations of Apple Watch cases and bands are carbon neutral, while the MacBook Air M3 is the first Apple product to be made with 50% recycled material.

The tech giant said it was making significant steps toward a 2030 target of becoming carbon neutral across its overall “value chain.” It ultimately aims to shrink emissions by 75% compared to 2015.

The announcements come just ahead of Earth Day on April 22nd, and are unsurprisingly meant to bolster Apple’s image as a pro-environment company. Other brands, including rivals like Google and Samsung, are sharing their own Earth Day news.

The report also doesn’t touch on concerns about Apple’s practices. While the company is now making products easier to repair, it spent years contesting right to repair legislation and making relatively difficult-to-fix products. It also objected to European Union efforts to standardize charging around USB-C, which aimed to reduce e-waste from unused cables. Apple only began switching its non-computer devices to USB-C last year with the iPhone 15 and AirPods Pro lineups.

Apple’s report nonetheless suggests that technology industry heavyweights are having at least some success in cutting emissions and overall waste. It’s just a question of whether the improvements are enough to overcome larger overall consumption and make a meaningful difference in limiting global warming.