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  • Report Claims Apple Suppliers Trying to Conceal Pollution



    Apple is no stranger to catching flack for its less-than-green and less-than-ideal manufacturing facilities. A report issued today on the website of the Beijing-based Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs alleges that 27 suspected Apple suppliers have severe pollution problems.

    The report claims Apple has decided to use loopholes in developing countries' environmental policies to increase profits dramatically. These loopholes have allowed the alleged suppliers to get away with dumping heavy metal sludge, and producing toxic gases, among other offenses. Of course Apple maintains that it is "committed to driving the highest standards of social responsibility throughout our supply base," according to spokeswoman Carolyn Wu.

    We require that our suppliers provide safe working conditions, treat workers with dignity and respect, and use environmentally responsible manufacturing processes wherever Apple products are made. - Wu
    This statement wreaks of the usual big business PR. The lackluster working conditions of Foxconn's factories is well documented (suicide culture) and Apple hasn't dropped them as their largest manufacturer.

    Apple isn't the only Western company who is criticized heavily in the report, Matel catches considerable guff for a lead-paint scandal in 2007. Non of this should be a big surprise. When large corporations outsource their manufacturing duties halfway across the world, and across multiple continents no less, it becomes nearly impossible to ensure each facility is practicing what their parent company is preaching.

    However, when a village near one of your production facilities experiences a "phenomenal rise in cases of cancer," it might be time to start keeping a closer eye on your "supply base."

    Source: Reuters
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Report Claims Apple Suppliers Trying to Conceal Pollution started by Phillip Swanson View original post
    Comments 8 Comments
    1. RICO_'s Avatar
      RICO_ -
      Thinking about how these people are suffering so Apple can maximize their profits makes me sick! If Apple needs to raise the price of their devices in order to clean up their act then so be it.....it's the right thing to do. I hope they come down hard on Apple.
    1. Xenthis's Avatar
      Xenthis -
      Quote Originally Posted by RICO_ View Post
      Thinking about how these people are suffering so Apple can maximize their profits makes me sick! If Apple needs to raise the price of their devices in order to clean up their act then so be it.....it's the right thing to do. I hope they come down hard on Apple.

      Their prices are pretty inflated as is - why not stop keeping ALL the extra money.
    1. DSR500cr's Avatar
      DSR500cr -
      Seeing how it's been all over the news lately about Apple having more money than the U.S. Government, couldn't they consider bringing some of those jobs at these " questionable facilities " back to the U.S. to help our economic situation here...
    1. RICO_'s Avatar
      RICO_ -
      Quote Originally Posted by DSR500cr View Post
      Seeing how it's been all over the news lately about Apple having more money than the U.S. Government, couldn't they consider bringing some of those jobs at these " questionable facilities " back to the U.S. to help our economic situation here...
      No because that would slice into their profits since they would have to pay the workers here alot more than what they pay the Chinese workers. Plus I'm pretty sure we regulate and enforce environmental pollution policies alot more than China does.
    1. Rcworship's Avatar
      Rcworship -
      You think the prices are inflated now? Hah! Paying money instead of peanuts for workers will get us $1,000 iPods. And these mostly untalented (labor) jobs will undoubtedly have a union, so someone who pushes the button to start the machine or moves the items from pile A to pile B will end up making $35 an hour.
    1. rumbletumble's Avatar
      rumbletumble -
      Is global capitalism the 'least worst' system? Who knows, but just be thankful that the person getting screwed over right now isn't you ... And can there ever be such a thing as an 'ethical supply chain' when, as you note, 'it becomes nearly impossible to ensure each facility is practicing what their parent company is preaching'.
    1. davshirley's Avatar
      davshirley -
      Quote Originally Posted by DSR500cr View Post
      Seeing how it's been all over the news lately about Apple having more money than the U.S. Government, couldn't they consider bringing some of those jobs at these " questionable facilities " back to the U.S. to help our economic situation here...
      It is precisely because of those news stories that you see stories like this. People looking to shake down companies always target the big fish. That's a sad fact of life.
    1. delusion950's Avatar
      delusion950 -
      come on guys u cant have nice phones and not pollute the planet.