Apple’s Ultra-Thin Notebooks Pass EPEAT Verification Test

Remember this past summer, when Apple thought it would be a good idea to pull all of its products from the EPEAT Registry? At the time, we suspected that it was because the new MacBook Pro with Retina display uses parts that are glued into the case, including the battery. While glue is a cheaper construction material, it makes electronics very difficult to modify, repair, and almost impossible to recycle.

Apple tried to say it just didn’t need the registry to prove the eco-friendliness of its products, then quickly reversed that decision and returned to EPEAT. Still, the issue of whether or not Apple’s ultra-thin notebooks really lived up to EPEAT’s green standards was unresolved. That’s why the organization recently announced the results of a verification process that tested five different ultra-thin notebooks to determine their conformance with the green rating system’s stringent requirements. According to EPEAT all five, made by Apple, Lenovo, Samsung and Toshiba, met the requirements of the criteria reviewed.


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According to EPEAT, the intensive re-test addressed specific areas of concern that arose during the controversial week, namely “whether products could be upgraded, if tools were commonly available to accomplish upgrades, and whether materials of concern including batteries could be easily removed from ultra-thin products.”

Following their disassembly investigation, the test lab recommended that all the products be found to satisfy EPEAT requirements. After reviewing the data and recommendations provided by the lab, the Product Verification Committee found all investigated products to be in conformance with EPEAT criteria, clearing the way for all the products investigated to remain on the registry.

“EPEAT is committed to foster greener electronics and to give purchasers the tools to evaluate green claims,” said Robert Frisbee, CEO of EPEAT. “The system’s rigorous environmental assessment processes result from a powerful stake holder collaboration that includes purchasers, government, manufacturers, recyclers and academic participants. This latest series of stringent investigations demonstrates the power of that approach.”

Full details of the verification test and results can be found here.

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