Apple’s “green push” is apparently the motivating factor behind cable-maker Volex’s plan to switch to halogen-free power cables, according to a report from London Evening Standard (via GigaOM). While the move will allow Apple to curb fears of dioxins and furans released into the environment through burning halogen, it is typically only a concern in high concentrations after a product has been disposed. The new cables will allow Apple to promote a new, greener and safer cable while continuing its commitment to reducing toxic chemicals and recycling. Apple is currently the company’s biggest customer with Volex supplying USB and power cables for Apple’s line of mobile devices including iPhones, iPads, and MacBooks.
The move to halogen-free cables is expected to cost Volex $6 million this year, but the company noted these are only one-time, startup costs and expect profit to meet market expectations. Apple is already shipping PVC–free internal cables and power adapter DC cables worldwide, and a PVC-free power cord in most of North and South America.
Apple made a significant push to go green in recent years and even published “A Greener Apple” detailing how it removed toxic chemicals such as lead, BFR, arsenic, PVC, and mercury from its entire product line. At that time, then CEO Steve Jobs shared his thoughts on Apple’s future in becoming an environmental leader within the industry:
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I hope you are as delighted as I was when I first learned how far along Apple actually is in removing toxic chemicals from its products and recycling its older products. We apologize for leaving you in the dark for this long. Apple is already a leader in innovation and engineering, and we are applying these same talents to become an environmental leader. Based on our tangible actions and results over time, hopefully our customers, employees, shareholders and professional colleagues will all feel proud of our ongoing efforts to become a greener Apple. — Steve Jobs
You can view Apple’s full Environmental Health and Safety Policy statement here.