Apple VP Lisa Jackson Sings Praises of Working with China to Protect Forests

Forest in Guangxi Province, with Apple's Green logo

Apple VP Lisa Jackson said China has been a good partner in Apple’s quest to protect forests. Key to that, according to an interview she gave to GreenBiz, is working with the World Wildlife Fun (WWF) and Chinese foresters.

Forest in Guangxi Province, with Apple's Green logo
Forest in Guangxi Province, with Apple’s Green logo

The interview came in the wake of Apple announcing plans to put a million acres of forest under protection. This is part of the company’s goal of responsibly managing enough forest to cover its own packaging needs.

Interestingly, Ms. Jackson’s message is an economic one. Apple has shown you can be green and profitable, both, a concept some in the U.S. have resitsted. Apple, though, is the world’s most profitable company, and it’s almost certainly the greenest electronics giant, too.

Lisa Jackson Quote from GreenBiz

From the article:

We found that the Chinese were willing to be wonderful partners, both on the private and public-sector side because they have a real appreciation for the forest resource. We’re finding that China is very fertile soil to grow green programs.

One of the learning lessons is to work with folks on the ground with real experience in China. WWF is that, but part of the reason WWF is so respected in China is that they are local. They are hiring local Chinese foresters and experts and water managers. They work with landowners, and again, one of the entities is even a state government entity.

And they’re showing that you can have economic growth, and you can harvest this land and still make money, which is very important still in a developing economy like China. Parts of China are still very much in a development situation. And so you can make money, but you can also preserve the natural environment and all the biodiversity that goes along with it.

Apple’s Long Game in China

In Monday’s Daily Observations, our own John Martellaro and Jeff Gamet argued that Apple was playing a long game in China, including making major investments in working with locals in the country. This story supports that thesis. While the company was forced to pull VPN apps from the Chinese App Store, this model has apparently been working in the world of forestry protection.

There’s more about Apple’s forestry efforts in the full piece.

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