updated 06:56 pm EST, Thu January 2, 2014
Environmental report highlights vastly-reduced resources, carbon footprint
Apple has updated its Environmental Responsibility page -- a section of its website most rivals do not even attempt to match -- with data on the new Mac Pro, revealing that the unit uses 68 percent less power at idle than the previous model, despite being far more powerful. The new design uses 74 percent less aluminium than the previous design, and features an even stronger mix of recyclable materials than before. The package takes up 82 percent less volume as well.
The Mac Pro's energy efficiency comes mostly from the use of more-intelligent components that power down when not used. As a result, most of the "carbon footprint" of the machine -- 65 percent -- comes from its manufacturing process rather than its use. The new Mac Pro's lifetime "greenhouse gas" emissions are rated at 940 kilograms carbon dioxide equivalent, six percent less than that of a 27-inch iMac (the Mac mini is, as one might expect, the carbon footprint winner at 270kg co2e).
As is standard with Macs, the Mac Pro meets an array of government standards for energy use, including Energy Star 6.0 standards and a gold rating from EPEAT, and meets the latest RoHS Directive guidelines to avoid use of lead, mercury, cadmium, PBB, PBDE and hexavalent chromium. In addition, the company points out that its design is BFR-free, and uses PVC-free internal and external cables in all regions (India and South Korea, for some reason, continue to use power cords that contain PVCs).
Apple also notes that the reduced volume and weight of the Mac Pro also makes for more efficient packaging and shipping, the latter being a major factor in the greenhouse gas equation. Compared to the previous Mac Pro, the 82 percent lower volume means that three retail Mac Pro packages can be shipped in the same space as the old Mac Pro's package. The packages use 33 percent recycled cardboard as well.
"Apple's ultra-compact product and packaging designs lead the industry in material efficiency," the company says. "Reducing the material footprint of a product helps maximize shipping efficiency. It also helps reduce energy consumed during production as well as material waste generated at the end of the product's life. The enclosure and thermal core of Mac Pro is made of aluminum and copper, materials that are highly desired by recyclers," according to the report, which can be seen in full here (PDF).