Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), the renowned manufacturer of a line of products that includes iPhones, iPads, iPods and Mac computers has been using two harmful chemicals namely benzene and n-hexane in its final assembly of goods. These chemicals are apparently responsible for causing serious life threatening diseases like cancer and nerve damage.
“This is doing everything we can think of to do to crack down on chemical exposures and to be responsive to concerns,” Apple’s vice president of environmental initiatives Lisa Jackson told The Associated Press. “We think it’s really important that we show some leadership and really look toward the future by trying to use greener chemistries.”
Limit set for early production phases
The Associated Press informed Wednesday that Apple has taken the decision of banning the usage of these two chemicals in the final assembly of all of its devices that could pose serious threat to health of its workers engaged in the manufacturing of gadgets.
The usage of these substances will not be stopped completely by Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), but an upper limit would be put on the quantity used in the early production phases of its devices. Cleaning solvents typically make use of the chemicals.
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) was petitioned by the activist groups China Labor Watch and Green America, five months ago, for discontinuing the use of the two chemicals. Benzene has been classified as a risky carcinogen capable of causing life threatening disease like leukemia while n-hexane is said to be responsible for causing damages to nerves by the US Environmental Protection Agency.
Smart move from Apple
The prohibition has become of utmost importance as both the aforesaid chemicals have been found extremely hazardous. The Associated Press informed that Apple showed its concern towards its workers and went ahead with a thorough investigation of 22 factories spanning over four months and it was found that none of the 500,000 workers at these plants was endangered by this. The said chemicals could be traced at only four of the factories and were within the normal safety limits, informed Apple. Apple chose to go ahead with the ban even though the outcome of the finding was not very adverse.
It’s a smart move from Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), as recently it has been criticized for unfair HR policies, when the labors accused the company that they were forced to work for long hours at very low wages, and had to live in poor conditions in the supplier factories, which was a clear violation of labor laws. This led Apple into carrying out audits at these factories, so as to assure that the workers get a clean and safe environment at the workplace.