updated 04:01 pm EDT, Thu July 12, 2012
Activist group still wants Apple to drop coal power
Environmentalist group Greenpeace says that Apple's clean energy policies have improved, but the company still has a long way to go. In a new report, Greenpeace analyzes Apple's efforts to reduce its dependency on coal-power, finding that the iPad maker has yet to lay out a realistic plan to power its iCloud offerings with cleaner energy alternatives. Greenpeace's "Clean Energy Road Map" gave Apple a score of 22.6 percent, up from 15.3 percent in April.
Greenpeace gave Apple grades of D, D, C, and C in energy transparency, infrastructure siting, energy efficiency, and renewable energy sourcing, respectively. In order to improve its grade, the organization recommended that Apple choose a renewable-powered local utility for its Oregon data center instead of buying renewable energy credits. Also, Greenpeace suggested putting pressure on Duke Energy, which supplies power to Apple's North Carolina cloud facility, to eliminate its mountaintop coal removal operations from Apple's electricity supply chain and invest in renewable energy generation.
Apple has claimed that its North Carolina data facility will be run entirely on renewable energy by the end of this year. While giving Apple credit for this development, Greenpeace has steadily put a spotlight on the consumer electronics maker's environmental impact, staging protests at Apple's Cupertino headquarters and blocking trains carrying coal to power Apple cloud facilities.