Company executives say that most existing green rankings are flawed in several respects. They count the promises companies make about green plans rather than actual achievements. And most focus on the environmental impact of a company’s operations, but exclude that of its products.
“A lot of companies publish how green their building is, but it doesn’t matter if you’re shipping millions of power-hungry products with toxic chemicals in them,” says CEO Steve Jobs in an interview. “It’s like asking a cigarette company how green their office is.”
Apple is reporting that it is responsible for 10.2 million tons of carbon emissions annually, with consumers’ use of Apple products accounting for 53% of the company’s total. But other companies don’t report figures in that manner. HP and Dell, for instance, put their carbon emissions at 8.4 million tons and 471,000 tons respectively, though both are larger than Apple in terms of revenue.
In addition, Apple claims that it began banning toxic substances from its machines in 2001, years before its competition.