Apple contributing to Chinese pollution, environmentalists say

Five environmental organizations in China have issued a report accusing Apple of contributing to the country’s pollution by providing business to suppliers that have “public records of environmental violations,” the Financial Times reported on Wednesday. The environmentalists attempted to contact 29 different tech companies in an effort to coerce the firms into cleaning up their supply chains but said Apple was unresponsive. Apple is reportedly taking “advantage of the loopholes in developing countries’ environmental management systems” to create its products. Factories for Kaedar Electronics and Unimicron Electronics are being blamed for increased cancer rates and pollution in the Chinese city of Kunshan. In addition, increased air pollution has forced parents to send their children to schools outside the city. Read on for more.Hours before the report was published, Apple approached one co-author, Ma Jun, the director of the Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs and asked Jun to start open discussions. Jun named the suppliers and Apple rebuked his claims and said it does not use several of them. Apple typically keeps its suppliers close to the vest but Jun and the other authors were able to name twenty of them by researching court documents and public information, the Financial Times said. “Apple is committed to driving the highest standards of social responsibility throughout our supply base,” Apple spokesperson Carolyn Wu told the Financial Times. “We require that our suppliers provide safe working conditions, treat workers with dignity and respect, and use environmentally responsible manufacturing processes wherever Apple products are made.”

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