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Apple are the latest in a long line of vendors interested in Green IT, but why are they doing it and will this continue? Christopher Dring plants a tree...

SPOTLIGHT – Going Green

When they’re not pestering me on the High Street for just five pounds a month, those folk over at Greenpeace are having a right go at the technology big wigs. One week it’s Nintendo, the next it’s Sony and this week? This week’s it’s our dear friend Mr Steve Jobs.

You see, the MacBook Air, with all its environmentally friendly features (fully recyclable aluminium casing, mercury and arsenic free display etc…), is only worth a B- according to Rick Hind, the legislative director of Greenpeace’s toxics campaign.

Of course there’s nothing wrong with a B, if I got a B in physical education at school, I’d have been overjoyed. However, Hind believes Jobs and co can do better.

“Apple is getting greener, but not green enough. The MacBook Air has less toxic pvc plastic and less toxic BFRs, but it could have been zero and that would make Apple an eco-leader,” he said, before jumping in a trawler and rescuing a whale from a fleet of Japanese gun ships.

Whether or not you’re a fan of Greenpeace is besides the point, Green IT is big at the moment, with vendors heavily pushing their new environmentally friendly range of products. Not a day goes by in the PC Retail office when we’re not reading about a recyclable notebook or graphics platform complete with ‘new’ power reduction technology.

And it won’t be long before green-minded customers are asking about the environmental features that may or may not exist in their new desktop or notebook. The same kind of customers concerned about their carbon footprint, and only buy fresh, organic produce.

Green IT is also to be at the centre of this year’s CeBIT show, which has an entire ‘village’ dedicated to the topic, and the organisers are also preparing a guide for visitors to read.

It’s good to see the IT industry taking matters of the environment seriously, it’s important that we look after our planet after all, and I don’t want my ‘toxic iPod’ killing off the endangered Pandas or giant salamanders.

But it is more than just planet-saving technology, it appeals to a nation concerned about global warming, and that could mean increased revenues for all involved.

And if that happens, then I expect Apple, Dell, HP and all the leading technology companies will be pushing for that A+ grade.

The future’s green.

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