Impact on sales of Apple’s pull out of EPEAT green certification

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    Posted: 09 July 2012 05:30 AM

    Engadget just reported that Apple has withdrawn all its laptop and desktop computers from the EPEAT environmental rating system, including older MacBook Pro and MacBook Air models.

    The problem appears to be related to the way Apple attaches the battery to the aluminum case to make them more compact.  iFixit apparently tore down a MacBook Pro with a retina screen, and couldn’t remove the batteries without spilling the battery contents.

    Apple’s decision means that many federal agencies, large corporations or educational institutions may not be able to buy those products, since much of their computer purchasing must conform to the EPEAT standard.

    Although this doesn’t seem to be a “shoot from the hip” type of decision, it may be the first move in Apple moving to a new green certification.  Typically, Wall Street hammers AAPL when this type of “news” hits the newswires… love to hear all your thoughts on the potential impact.

    Read the article (the comments are more entertaining at: http://www.engadget.com/2012/07/07/apple-pulls-out-of-epeat-green-registration/

         
  • Posted: 09 July 2012 06:21 AM #1

    Oops - strange duplicate post during wifi glitch!

         
  • Posted: 09 July 2012 06:22 AM #2

    Glued in batteries might prevent EPEAT certification, but I’m quite certain Apple has ensured they can be removed for recycling. More likely EPEAT methodology is obsolete.  Apple may resent that the product lifetime footprint can be far smaller for an Apple product, yet EPEAT methodology may downrate the product because, for example, it can’t be dismantled with a screwdriver. Does EPEAT give credit for the longer lifetime of Apple products and Apple sealed in batteries? Probably not.

    I’d be interested to see other manufacturers’ equivalent to Apple product environmental impact reports

         
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    Posted: 09 July 2012 06:28 AM #3

    Don’t think that it has a big impact on sales.

    http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/2012/07/07/what-apple-lost-by-dropping-epeat-green-certification/

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  • Posted: 09 July 2012 06:55 AM #4

    A quick look through the EPEAT site shows that it does mandate inappropriate methods. It’s very much predicated on the evolutionary dead-end the Wintel PC occupies. For example, a product is certified not for using less plastic, but for incorporating 25% post consumer recycled plastic; easy to achieve with a typical clunker PC.  But I think the big issue is the fact that EPEAT mandates modular, end user upgradable, and end user dismantleable laptops and desktops. And that is something that Apple has barely met for years (only ram end user upgradeable on iMac).  MacBook air and the new MacBook pro simply aren’t end user modifiable. I understand Apple’s reasons, but they’ve hit me in the pocket - I can’t buy the low spec retina MacBook and upgrade it; if I want more than 256GB storage, I have to buy the faster model at a premium price, even though I have no justification for the extra speed.

    So - I conclude it’s the new MacBook Pro that’s the final nail in the coffin of Apple EPEAT certification. Unless EPEAT is updated to reflect real environmental impact, it’s going to die with the Wintel desktop PC.

         
  • Posted: 09 July 2012 07:15 AM #5

    EPEAT would force Apple products to be clumsier, less reliable and have a worse environmental impact. In that sense, pulling out of EPEAT is a competitive advantage for Apple.

    I’d love to see a standard based on auditable lifetime impact assessment. But the trouble with being forced to tell the truth is that only Apple would join. EPEAT is perhaps more about politics than the environment.

         
  • Posted: 09 July 2012 01:52 PM #6

    EPEAT is like most organizations making rules for others to follow:  Arbitrary, incompetent, and behind the times.

    Without Apple, they will die.

         
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    Posted: 09 July 2012 03:47 PM #7

    capablanca - 09 July 2012 04:52 PM

    EPEAT is like most organizations making rules for others to follow:  Arbitrary, incompetent, and behind the times.

    Without Apple, they will die.

    Nice to see AAPL have the clout (and finally - by inference - market penetration) to challenge outmoded standards rather than having to follow along or be damaged financially.

         
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    Posted: 09 July 2012 09:19 PM #8

    Apple will sell Macs to plenty of people who aren’t beholden to EPEAT whatever.  It’s not that big a deal, particularly since a lot of ultrabooks will be falling out of the EPEAT ratings just to catch up to the current MacBook Air.  That or become horrifically compromised in the process.

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    Posted: 10 July 2012 12:49 PM #9

    Sales impact will be minimal. Most customers have never heard of EPEAT.

    However to disagree with many of the posters here I think this is a very bad thing. Old PCs (Macs included) end up at the local recycling center. That Apple will recycle them for free is irrelevant. When somebody cleans out the garage or recently deceased aunt Martha’s basement they won’t be checking. They won’t take the time to call or write. They won’t take the time to package and ship, free or not. All the stuff will go to recycling or the landfill.

    Recycling centers pay volunteers or minimum wage people to dismantle appliances like computers, radios, microwaves, etc, into different materials for recycling. Sending off plastic and steel and aluminum is how they make money. If faced with a device that can’t be taken apart with hand tools by someone with little or no training what do you think they will do? Do you think they will take advantage of Apple’s free service? No that will cost them time and for a company time is money.

    They will stop accepting Macs for recycling or just as likely start charging to recycle them. The upshot will be more Macs, and other small electric devices (phones and such) dumped and not recycled.

    This is a very bad thing, though as I said above, it likely won’t have much if any impact on sales.

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  • Posted: 10 July 2012 07:27 PM #10

    Headline is baiting for clickers. Sales dropping? Yeah, go up three or four and see their increase in cash by $10 billion in overseas holdings. Has anybody else noticed Apple’s stock price is on par to lap Google’s in under 3 months? A year ago, Google had a near 300 point lead. Apple closed yesterday with a 26 point lead.

    Search that! Ba-da Bing.

         
  • Posted: 10 July 2012 08:48 PM #11

    Surprised this wasn’t posted:

    San Francisco Officials Plan to Block Apple Procurement

    San Francisco city officials say they are moving to block purchases of Apple desktops and laptops, by all municipal agencies, after the company removed a green electronics certification from its products.

         
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    Posted: 10 July 2012 09:09 PM #12

    Maybe because we don’t care? LOL

    Actually, didn’t even know.

    That won’t go over well with those workers who like their Macs, that’s for sure.

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  • Posted: 10 July 2012 09:15 PM #13

    FalKirk - 10 July 2012 11:48 PM

    Surprised this wasn’t posted:

    San Francisco Officials Plan to Block Apple Procurement

    San Francisco city officials say they are moving to block purchases of Apple desktops and laptops, by all municipal agencies, after the company removed a green electronics certification from its products.

    Keyword?  Planning.  Let’s see how this plays out.  We’ve yet to hear from Apple on why they pulled the plug on this organization.  I have hopes for a Cook manifesto similar in vein to Steve’s flash posting.

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  • Posted: 10 July 2012 11:04 PM #14

    BillH - 11 July 2012 12:15 AM
    FalKirk - 10 July 2012 11:48 PM

    Surprised this wasn’t posted:

    San Francisco Officials Plan to Block Apple Procurement

    San Francisco city officials say they are moving to block purchases of Apple desktops and laptops, by all municipal agencies, after the company removed a green electronics certification from its products.

    Keyword?  Planning.  Let’s see how this plays out.  We’ve yet to hear from Apple on why they pulled the plug on this organization.  I have hopes for a Cook manifesto similar in vein to Steve’s flash posting.

    Apple response here:

    http://www.loopinsight.com/2012/07/10/apple-responds-to-epeat-concerns/

    So typical of government officials with a knee-jerk reaction.  No thinking, just reflex.

         
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    Posted: 10 July 2012 11:10 PM #15

    “Green-ness” is more objective, and it doesn’t hew to outmoded standards and modular battery bays or repairability scores.

    Apple continues to lead on several fronts.  EPEAT is US gov’t, but it’s hardly the rest of the world or even all that much of US Mac sales.

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