Target: Tim Cook, CEO of Apple
Goal: Reduce electronic waste by developing longer lasting products
A few days a year, Apple customers can be found standing in lines that sometimes stretch for blocks, anxiously awaiting their turn to buy the newest edition of an Apple product they probably already have. Their “old” model will be either resold or recycled. Apple claims it is being responsible by encouraging customers to hand in old products for refurbishing or recycling, but with plenty of evidence showing how detrimental e-waste is for the environment, it seems Apple could be even more responsible by making products that are built to last instead of built to be disposed. Call on Apple to chance its policies.
The greedy and wasteful days of planned obsolescence, making products with the intention of having them become outdated shortly after purchase, are rapidly coming to an end. Limited resources and increased pollution will force manufacturers to find ways to cut back on unnecessary waste.
Despite Apple’s claims that they “recycle responsibly” by recycling domestically, recycling e-waste can still cause lead, mercury, and other toxic materials to leak from landfills and threaten groundwater supplies. If the waste is shipped overseas for recycling (like most of the 300 to 400 thousand tons of electronics collected each year for recycling), peasants are forced to spend their days living in toxic e-waste dumps where they melt plastic wires in order to retrieve the copper inside them. The fumes have been known to cause heart disease, cancer, lung problems and can even modify DNA. As the leader in cutting edge technology, Apple has an opportunity to set an example for other companies by making durable items that don’t encourage our consumer culture to buy products with the intention of tossing them out a year later.
By signing this petition, you are encouraging Apple to be environmentally responsible by spending more time developing products that are made to last instead of made to be thrown out.
Dear Tim Cook,
Each year, Apple introduces a new edition of at least one of its products. Although Apple claims to be responsible by encouraging customers to hand in products to be refurbished or recycled, that’s not good enough. With all the knowledge and technological know-how your engineers possess, it’s hard to believe they can’t develop a product that is made to last and have updates installed rather than having customers buy an entirely new product each year.
Although recycling is better than just disposing of products and filling in landfills, more and more evidence is coming to light on how recycling isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. The process of recycling electronics can cause lead, mercury, and other toxins to leak into our groundwater.
As one of the most innovative technology companies in the world, we urge you to set an example for other electronics manufacturers by developing products that are built to last.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: geograph.org.uk