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The workplace of the inventor's technique. The hands of the worker are bound by a chain as a symbol of the prohibition on repair. Andrey Bukreev / iStock / Getty Images Plus

When our smartphones, televisions or other gadgets stop working, it seems like the only choice we have is to get rid of it. This never-ending stream of electronic waste has created mountains of toxic trash that's hazardous to people and the planet.

That's why consumers and lawmakers in the U.S. and Europe are fighting back under the burgeoning "Right to Repair" movement that demands manufacturers make products that last longer and are easier to fix, BBC News reported.

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Apple's Cupertino headquarters features a 17-megawatt solar installation. Apple

In its continued efforts to "combat climate change and create a healthier environment," Apple announced Monday that its global facilities are now powered with 100 percent clean energy.

All of the tech giant's retail stores, offices, data centers and co-located facilities in 43 countries use renewable energy sources, upping the ante from 93 percent two years ago.

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EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

If you ever felt like your iPhone is getting slower over time, Apple has admitted that it deliberately slows down the processing speeds of phones with older batteries to stop them shutting down without warning.

The tech giant is ultimately doing a good thing—even if it's in a sneaky, backhanded way. Smartphone batteries certainly have a limited lifespan.

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The chart shows how supportive or obstructive a company is towards climate policy aligned with the Paris Agreement, including the analysis of its trade association links. The Engagement Intensity expresses the intensity of this activity, whether positive or negative. InfluenceMap.

For better or worse, corporations have a major influence on climate change policy. Just look at Koch Industries, a multinational conglomerate owned by conservative billionaires Charles and David Koch that has contributed hundreds of millions to federal candidates and lobbying over the last 25 years.

The "Corporate Carbon Policy Footprint," a new analysis from U.K. nonprofit InfluenceMap, now ranks Koch Industries as the company with the strongest opposition to the Paris climate agreement and most intensely lobbies against policies in line with the landmark global accord.

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Apple Inc. issued a $1 billion "green bond" on Tuesday, the first U.S. corporation to make such an offer in response to President Donald Trump's withdrawal of the U.S. from the Paris climate agreement.

Proceeds from bond sales will finance renewable energy projects and other environmental initiatives at Apple facilities and in its supply chain.

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By Greg Alvarez

Over the past few months, we've seen big wind energy investments from the likes of GM, Facebook, Home Depot and others. But one of the world's largest companies and leading proponents of doing business using 100 percent renewable energy, has been conspicuously absent: Apple.

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U.S. companies are taking a stand in these politically chaotic times.

So far, 127 technology firms are firing back at President Donald Trump's travel ban affecting immigrants and refugees from seven Muslim-majority countries.

The movement was led by nearly 100 Silicon Valley companies who filed a legal brief on Sunday to oppose the highly controversial executive order, arguing that it is unconstitutional and "inflicts significant harm on American business, innovation, and growth." Apple, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Uber, Reddit, Netflix and Dropbox were among the 97 companies that initially signed on to support Washington state's lawsuit against Trump's order.

That list got substantially larger late Monday afternoon, when Tesla, SpaceX and 29 other tech firms joined the brief.

Tesla and SpaceX were notably absent on the original list of signatories. CEO Elon Musk, who happens to sit on Trump's business advisory council, previously said he would use his position to "express our objections to the recent executive order on immigration."

But as a Tesla spokesperson told the Verge, "as soon as we saw the brief this morning, we insisted on being added."

The suit is being heard in the ninth circuit federal court in San Francisco, California and has already succeeded in temporarily halting the enforcement of the executive order.

Many other companies are making real efforts to be socially responsible. The outdoor industry as a whole has taken a stand against Utah state's and the federal government's proposals to shed public lands.

In an open letter to Trump and Congress, more than 100 outdoor industry leaders led by REI have called upon elected officials to protect public lands and the integrity of the outdoor recreation industry, which powers $646 billion in gross national product.

Outdoor clothing big-hitter Patagonia also announced on Tuesday it will not participate in Utah's Outdoor Retailer shows after Gov. Gary Herbert signed a resolution on Friday urging the Trump administration to repeal the newly named Bears Ears National Monument.

A new Greenpeace report, Clicking Clean: Who is Winning the Race to Build a Green Internet?, finds that Apple, Google, Facebook and newcomer Switch are leading the charge to build a renewably powered internet. These companies are coupling transitions of their data centers to clean energy with strong advocacy for access to renewable options.

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This is an excerpt from The Shareholder Action Guide, which will be released by Berrett-Koehler Publishing on Nov. 15. It is available for pre-order on Amazon.com.

A classic example of a negotiation with a notoriously tough corporation that was quite heated (but ended up with a positive change) took place leading up to May 2, 2007, when Apple CEO, Steve Jobs, made the public statement on the Apple website, "Today is the first time we have openly discussed our plans to become a greener Apple. It will not be the last. We apologize for leaving you in the dark for so long."

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Apple, Bank of America and Amalgamated Bank have pledged to go 100 percent renewable, joining the RE100 group.

This new solar project will supply Apple's data center in Arizona with renewable energy.Apple

Bank of America also announced it will be "carbon neutral" by 2020, while Apple announced new commitments to power its supply chain with renewable energy.

"Apple is committed to running on 100 percent renewable energy, and we're happy to stand beside other companies that are working toward the same effort," said Lisa Jackson, Apple's vice president for Environment, Policy and Social Initiatives.

The announcements at Climate Week come on the heels of GM's pledge last week to power its worldwide operations with 100 percent clean energy by 2050.

"Apple has taken another important step to deliver on its commitment to powering its corner of the internet with 100 percent renewable energy," said Gary Cook, Greenpeace senior IT analyst. "This deal once again shows that renewables are not just good for the environment, but good for business."

For a deeper dive:

News: GreenBiz, BusinessGreen, Ars Technica, Mashable, Global Times, PV-Tech, edie.net, Environmental Leader, CNBC

For more climate change and clean energy news, you can follow Climate Nexus on Twitter and Facebook, and sign up for daily Hot News.

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