The widely-popular company Apple is going green. They have invested in two environmentally important projects. First, the iPhone maker purchased 36,000 acres of forest land for the express purpose of protecting it from future development. Second, they have two new solar farm projects which are already under construction in China, duplicating clean energy efforts the company has already made in the U.S.
Apple bought the forest lands, situated in Maine and North Carolina, in part to ensure that the company has a sustainable source for the packaging for some of their products. Although the forests will be protected from development, Apple will harvest some wood, which is roughly equivalent to the footprint of the city of San Francisco. Hopefully, this will encourage other businesses to think in a more holistic way about their manufacturing process and get involved in the sourcing of sustainable raw materials as a method for greening their final products.
The company also plans to build two new 20 megawatt solar farms in China in partnership with SunPower. Together, the farms will produce as much as 80 million kilowatt-hours per year, which is sent to the grid in those local areas, directly benefiting residents and businesses with clean energy.
Although Apple has been criticized in the past by Greenpeace and other similar organizations, they are starting to change their tune about the iPhone giant. Many feel that Apple is making good headway toward balancing their environmental impact. Apple has been making a huge push for solar power in recent projects, including several solar farms stateside, and the construction of their new California headquarters, which is planned to be 100 percent solar-powered by its completion.
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