Green America ‘pleased’ with Apple’s first steps in banning chemicals; urges Apple to go further

Green America’s press release, verbatim:

Green America announced today that it is pleased with Apple’s August 13 announcement that it is taking first steps to protect the workers who make their products from dangerous chemical exposures. Apple announced that it is banning the use of benzene and n-hexane in the final assembly of its products.

Green America continues to urge Apple to go further to ensure the safety of all workers in its supply chain. Beyond benzene and n-hexane, there are thousands of chemicals used in the manufacturing of electronics—some which are largely untested – and many chemicals used by Apple suppliers remain undisclosed. Apple first needs to disclose all of the chemicals used in the manufacturing processes of its products, not just those with restrictions. Additionally, while Green America applauds Apple for investigating all its final assembly plants in China, the nonprofit is urging Apple to look deeper into its supply chain, to the second and third tier suppliers, where chemical usage and safety procedures are less controlled. Apple has 349 supplier facilities in China with an estimated 1.5 million workers. Apple has investigated just 22 of these facilities (6.3%) which employ a third of the workers who work on Apple’s products. This sample does not represent a cross-section of all of Apple’s suppliers in China. Apple is still allowing benzene and n-hexane, and many other potentially hazardous chemicals, to be used in its second and third tier suppliers.

Elizabeth O’Connell, campaigns director at Green America, said: “This announcement and the preceding investigation shows that Apple listens to its customers. However, Apple needs to go further to create a safe environment at all factories in their supply chain for the health and safety of all 1.5 million workers.”

Green America will continue to call for Apple to identify and disclose all chemicals used in all supplier factories. Chemicals deemed hazardous to human health must be replaced with safer alternatives in all factories. In situations where the danger of a chemical is unknown, Apple must require proper testing. Apple must institute and enforce appropriate exposure monitoring, medical monitoring, and effective training and management systems to ensure worker health and safety, and ensure that any workers harmed in the manufacture of its products receive appropriate medical care.

Source: Green America

Related articles:
Apple bans use of 2 hazardous chemicals in iPhone assembly – August 13, 2014
Samsung: Sorry about that cancer – May 14, 2014
Greenpeace praises Apple for reducing use of conflict minerals – February 13, 2014
Apple confirms suppliers use conflict-free minerals – February 13, 2014
Fair Labor Association sees progress at major Apple supplier Foxconn – December 12, 2013


  1. Dear Green America, Did you “URGED” sansung` dell, hp, motorola and all others companies already?
    Those associations crank me up because they are like chicken with out head all the time and when ever a responsable company step up with something good, they make a press release so people can think that happened because of them and then collect donations for something they didn’t do.
    Let’s start an association..

    1. The fact that Green America went after Apple is a logical move. Apple is the the largest tech company in the world, and putting the spotlight on them will get the most awareness of the problem.

      I worked in the printing industry in the 1970’s and was exposed to several chemicals, including benzene, that have since been banned from that industry. Years later I was diagnosed with two different cancers that may have been caused by that exposure.

      The printing industry didn’t phase out those chemicals once they were suspected as being carcinogenic because they were more effective than the safe alternatives at the time. In my ignorance, I continued to use them for that reason. It wasn’t until these unsafe chemicals were widely publicized that I realized my error; and the result was predictable.

  2. 3…2…1..que Greenpeace.

    Someone stole their thunder. Just wait, Greenpeace will come out and say they aren’t doing enough or some other bullshit to get their headlines back.

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