Environment

Apple Products May Be Off-Limits for City of San Francisco

City officials in San Francisco may no longer be able to buy Apple products in their official capacities and you can blame the green movement.

A 2007 policy requires that city agencies buy only those products that are 100% certified according to the Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT) group’s guidelines.  Those rules specify that electronics must be easily disassembled by consumers so that environmentally-toxic components like batteries can be disposed of safely.

But Apple products aren’t designed to be taken apart, a fact that PC-advocates love pointing out and a fact to which many Apple lovers like me have no objection.

The company asked the group to remove 39 of its devices from the “green list,” reports Mashable, and because of the request, city agencies in San Francisco, just a few miles away from Apple’s corporate headquarters, won’t be able to purchase Apple products for work purposes unless the rules get changed.

I’m sure there are ways to safely dispose of Apple products that take any toxic components into account; I’d be willing to bet, though I don’t know from any first-hand experience, that any Apple Store would be able to take care of this very task.  And just because a product can be easily taken apart so that environmentally-unfriendly components can be disposed of suitably when it’s time to discard the technology doesn’t necessarily mean that every user will actually do so.

If it were me, I’d take the product to an Apple store and let them handle it. If they don’t want to design something to make easier for me to do something I really don’t want to fool with doing to begin with, I’m delighted to drop it off in their hands and let it be their problem!

I like what the 100% policy intends to do, but perhaps it’s a little on the extreme side?

Your Turn:

Does the regulation’s “zero tolerance” seem unnecessary to you, or do you think Apple ought to redesign its products to they’re easier to take apart?

16 Comments

  1. […] I waited and waited, and yet, nothing changed. Normally at this point, I would pull the battery to sort of reboot the phone. That seems to be the answer to many problems with technology. The only problem is, the Razr  doesn’t have a removable battery. I guess the city of San Francisco won’t be buying any. […]

  2. The easier it comes apart when you want it to, the easier it also comes apart when you don’t. Apple products aren’t designed for people who like to incorporate screwdrivers and soldering irons as part of their computing experience…and that’s the way I prefer it.

  3. The easier it comes apart when you want it to, the easier it also comes apart when you don’t. Apple products aren’t designed for people who like to incorporate screwdrivers and soldering irons as part of their computing experience…and that’s the way I prefer it.

  4. The easier it comes apart when you want it to, the easier it also comes apart when you don’t. Apple products aren’t designed for people who like to incorporate screwdrivers and soldering irons as part of their computing experience…and that’s the way I prefer it.

  5. The easier it comes apart when you want it to, the easier it also comes apart when you don’t. Apple products aren’t designed for people who like to incorporate screwdrivers and soldering irons as part of their computing experience…and that’s the way I prefer it.

  6. The easier it comes apart when you want it to, the easier it also comes apart when you don’t. Apple products aren’t designed for people who like to incorporate screwdrivers and soldering irons as part of their computing experience…and that’s the way I prefer it.

  7. The easier it comes apart when you want it to, the easier it also comes apart when you don’t. Apple products aren’t designed for people who like to incorporate screwdrivers and soldering irons as part of their computing experience…and that’s the way I prefer it.

  8. Maybe instead of a rule banning the sale of products that are not easy to recycle they should be given an option to take back the product at the end of its life.

  9. Maybe instead of a rule banning the sale of products that are not easy to recycle they should be given an option to take back the product at the end of its life.

  10. Wouldn’t it make more ‘common sense’ for the regulation simply to state that products must be disposed of properly, whether they have a removable battery or not?

  11. Wouldn’t it make more ‘common sense’ for the regulation simply to state that products must be disposed of properly, whether they have a removable battery or not?

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Patrick is a Christian with more than 28 years experience in professional writing, producing and marketing. His professional background also includes social media, reporting for broadcast television and the web, directing, videography and photography. He enjoys getting to know people over coffee and spending time with his dog.