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All Apple Operations Now Run Off 100 Percent Renewable Energy (9to5mac.com) 116

According to a recently-shared press release, Apple has finally hit its goal of running its own operations off 100% renewable energy. "All Apple facilities, from Apple Park to its data centers to worldwide fleet of Apple retail stores, are now solely powered by green energy," reports 9to5Mac. From the report: This figure does not include Apple's third-party suppliers or manufacturers, although the company is convincing many of those to switch to 100% renewable sources too. Apple's environment VP Lisa Jackson discussed the news in an interview with Fast Company. Jackson highlights how Apple has not only focused on reducing emissions but also contributed to the availability of green energy on the grid. Apple has gone from 16% renewable energy to 100% in eight years, with CO2 emissions falling by 58%. The company has built numerous wind and solar farms in cooperation with local institutions, as well as intense focus on environmental sustainability during development of its new buildings like Apple Park. Its data centers are flanked by fields of solar panels. Filling out the last 4% required Apple to find renewable energy sources in some of its more remote retail stores and offices. It has signed power purchase agreements in Brazil, India, Israel, Mexico and Turkey.
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All Apple Operations Now Run Off 100 Percent Renewable Energy

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  • Yeah right. (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    How does that work in the middle of a windless night? You may make the same amount of green power as used by your data centers but to say that you never fall back to âoedirtyâ grid power at any time is not a claim I can believe.

    • Most of my countries power is from renewable, about 80% I think.

      It's mostly from hydro power. Wind and solar isn't the only option.

      Thermal solar plants can produce power at night too. The sun heats up stuff, that heat is used to spin turbines.

      • Most of my countries power is from renewable, about 80% I think.

        Which country would that be? Or, would you rather we just guess?

        It's mostly from hydro power. Wind and solar isn't the only option.

        Hydro, wind, and solar are only options if the climate and geography allow it. I'm sure it's nice to have access to such ample supplies of hydroelectric power but that's not available to everyone. Solar power probably works great between the 45th parallels but for those living close to the poles solar doesn't work so well. The wind does blow almost everywhere but that can be a problem in places it blows too much. Then there are issues of t

        • I drove past this solar thermal plant today. Running well.
          https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wik... [wikipedia.org]
          Here's a list of others
          https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wik... [wikipedia.org]

          • That's nice. I'm sure those solar plants are in fact running well in sunny Arizona, Spain, and India. What about us here in snowy Midwestern America?

            How much do they cost and how much energy can they produce? I did a quick search of the few that actually had thermal storage and they cost nearly a billion dollars and produce maybe 500 GWh of electricity per year. A nuclear power plant may cost 10 billion dollars but it will also produce 10 times as much electricity, and not take up near as much land to d

            • That's nice. I'm sure those solar plants are in fact running well in sunny Arizona, Spain, and India. What about us here in snowy Midwestern America?

              HVDC [wikipedia.org]

              How much do they cost and how much energy can they produce?

              Thermal solar is expensive, and the falling cost of PV solar is pricing it out of the market. The "storage" feature of thermal solar is mostly pointless since daytime electricity is generally worth MORE than nighttime electricity. So it is more cost effective to just feed power into the grid rather than store it.

              • HVDC

                How much does that cost? What's the carbon footprint of all that steel and aluminum?

                Then there is the problem of having access to enough sun to meet the demand for electricity. The USA might be able to pull this off. What of Japan? Or, UK? I'm sure someone will want to bring up off shore windmills. How much does that cost? What's the carbon footprint? What happens if a hostile neighboring nation decides to start sinking windmills and cutting undersea power lines?

                Nothing has a smaller carbon footprin

                • Nothing is cheaper than nuclear except fossil fuels and maybe wind.

                  Nonsense. No nuclear power plant has ever been economically viable when full lifecycle costs (including decommissioning and long-term waste storage) and insurance are factored in. If they look economically, it's because a) decommissioning costs are under-estimated (in a pinch, reactors are spun off into a new company that then goes broke, leaving the public with the costs), b) the problem of long-term storage is largely ignored, with some states promising some solutions some time in the future, and c) insur

                  • All the same things can be said of solar.

                    • All the same things can be said of solar.

                      None of these things can be said of solar. Solar has no "decommissioning cost". There is no "long term storage" of waste from solar. And solar does not rely on subsidized insurance.

                      The cost of solar is declining steadily. The cost of nuclear has been rising for decades.

                    • The cost of solar is declining steadily. The cost of nuclear has been rising for decades.

                      Sure, and the two may eventually meet in the middle somewhere. With solar energy costs being double that of nuclear it's going to take a while for solar to be cheaper than nuclear. Assuming it ever happens, nuclear should get cheaper as experience grows.

                      I've become tired of the lies from solar advocates. There was a number of prominent stories about the solar waste problem on this website called "Slashdot", perhaps you've heard of it? Solar power has a waste problem far worse than nuclear. Go look up

        • New Zealand

    • They buy offsets and use power generated locally by conventional means.

    • In the long run, you will be fossil fuel for the cockroach civilization that emerges in geologic time.

  • by Joe_Dragon ( 2206452 ) on Monday April 09, 2018 @07:57PM (#56409251)

    new mac pro will be powered by hamster on wheel and that what is taking so long.

  • No they don't. (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    The claim is impossible. There was a similar article about Google last week claiming they produce from renewables as much energy as they consume. THAT is a plausible claim. What Apple is trying to say is is an outright obvious lie easily disproven by numerous examples of "apple facilities" using whatever power grid is available - such as Apple stores operating in shopping malls.

    • They buy offsets, or as the Catholic Church used to call them, indulgences.

    • The article says:

      Being 100% renewable does not mean that every Apple Store is powered by a solar farm, of course. Apple contributes to the power grid in even absolute amounts to what it uses. Unlike some other companies, it does not buy up REC in open market transactions to offset its dirty energy consumption skew the figures. Jackson explains

      So Apple produces as much or more energy than it uses.

    • The hot air produced by their marketing department alone should be enough to power both Apple AND Google.

  • The words coming out of Tim Cook's mouth are 100% renewable bullshit.
  • by viperidaenz ( 2515578 ) on Monday April 09, 2018 @08:01PM (#56409273)

    The majority of their energy use - the manufacturing of their products - is still dirty old coal.

    But that's ok, because it's being burnt in China, not USA.

  • 30% solar, 10% wind, and the rest was powered by smugness.
  • All apple operations now run 100% in renewable energy, but not all apple operations run on apple products.

    I am 100% certain that their cloud (think iCloud, Siri, iTunes store, App Store) and administrative infrastructure (think CRM, ERP, HR, etc) do not run on Apple Servers, and does not use Apple's OS.

    But good to know at least the energy front is covered...

    (And no, I never used MacOS Server or Apple's server hardware, I am just amused at the situation).

    Witten on a MacBook Air Early 2015, with an Android Ph

    • I am 100% certain that their cloud (think iCloud, Siri, iTunes store, App Store) and administrative infrastructure (think CRM, ERP, HR, etc) do not run on Apple Servers, and does not use Apple's OS.

      I suspect you were the last person on the planet to know about this.

      I doubt any long-time /. readers are surprised by this at all. Apple hasn't made a proper server since 2011, and doesn't sell or advertise macOS as a high-performance server OS (while they do still sell a "server" edition, it's more geared towards SOHO use than datacenter use).

      Apple left the server space quite some time ago. They run iCloud off a combination of Amazon AWS, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud, none of which run macOS. And t

  • Cobalt is at over $80K/ton and is still mined by children. The Cobalt isn't renewable but the kids are, so half points.

  • Unless the answer is zero, this is just feel-good nonsense. Converting their entire supply chain to all-recycled materials and all-renewable electricity isn't possible, and the closer you want to get the more the devices will cost.
    • I doubt it's zero, but the body of most iPhones, and even MacBooks and Mac computers is aluminum and glass. I am sure there are some plastic components, but the bulk of the body itself is not plastic.
    • Unless the answer is zero, this is just feel-good nonsense.

      Reality takes place in the gray area between your black and white. Feel free to join us when you are ready.

  • IOW, Apple is lying through their teeth.
  • by Goetterdaemmerung ( 140496 ) on Monday April 09, 2018 @09:11PM (#56409557)

    What the hell /.! After 30 comments maybe one would be novel or interesting.

    This is an impressive feat to run the datacenters entirely off renewable energy.

    • What the hell /.! After 30 comments maybe one would be novel or interesting.

      This is an impressive feat to run the datacenters entirely off renewable energy.

      VERY!

    • You're reading the comments wrong.
    • This is an impressive feat to run the datacenters entirely off renewable energy.

      No it isn't. Building a green datacentre run from renewable energy is pretty much par for the course for a long time now. Facebook, Google, Apple, Amazon, Microsoft etc all have been building renewable only datacentres for a while now.

      What is more difficult is retrofitting older datacentres, so forgive me for yawning at this "me too" announcement on the back of the far larger Google with its higher number of legacy projects that achieved the same milestone this week.

      If Apple want some serious praise they ca

  • by quonset ( 4839537 )

    Considering one has to throw out their phone or Mac after three years, or when something breaks and you can't replace the part, they're probably dumping all the broken systems into the furnace.

    An endless cycle of buy, fail, buy.

    • Considering one has to throw out their phone or Mac after three years, or when something breaks and you can't replace the part, they're probably dumping all the broken systems into the furnace.

      An endless cycle of buy, fail, buy.

      Sorry, Hater; but it's really more like this:

      Phone: MAYBE 3 years or so; but that's mostly because of "Ooh, shiny!", like with ALL Smartphones.

      iPad: Closer to 5 or 6 years. Again, mostly because of feature creep. IPads seem to last forever!

      Mac: Much closer to 10 years, on average. Unless you're a "Must have the new hotness" sort of person. My newest Mac (and daily driver) is a Mid 2012 MacBook Pro. Shows no signs of wear out or failure yet...

      • I'm typing this on a MacBook Pro that's got to be near 10 years old now. I dropped it and broke the optical drive and latch. I dropped it again, breaking the replacement optical drive. The original battery died, then I replaced it, and the replacement died. It now sits on my desk because I got tired of buying batteries. No one makes a replacement as good as the original.

        I bought a new MacBook Pro a few months ago, we'll see if I can avoid dropping this one and breaking something. The one thing that co

        • Exactly!

          BTW, how do you like that aftermarket Mag-Safe thingy?

          • The MagSafe work-alike I have came from Griffin Technology and works about as well as the old MagSafe connector from Apple. Like MagSafe it comes loose a bit too easily, which can be annoying. Unlike MagSafe it's orientation dependent, the magnetic connection can't be flipped over if there's some twisting tension that can make the connection come loose. This is easily addressed though by flipping over the USB-C connector. It's a "dumb" cable and so is limited to 60 watts like any passive USB-C cable, bu

  • by Anonymous Coward

    As noted in the article this doesn't mean that they've cut their connection to fossil fuel power plants, only that overall they produce an equal amount of renewable energy through various contracts/facilities as they use. They still rely heavily on fossil fuels. I'll be a bit more impressed when their facilities have hefty battery packs and energy from the grid flows into the site only a few weeks out of the year.

    • As noted in the article this doesn't mean that they've cut their connection to fossil fuel power plants, only that overall they produce an equal amount of renewable energy through various contracts/facilities as they use. They still rely heavily on fossil fuels. I'll be a bit more impressed when their facilities have hefty battery packs and energy from the grid flows into the site only a few weeks out of the year.

      FYI, the Mothership requires NO HVAC for 9 months out of the year. So, it isn't ALL just fancy energy-accounting.

  • "This figure does not include Apple's third-party suppliers or manufacturers".

    That's like saying Facebook runs on renewables, except for its data centres.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Not the one in my mall. Nope. Not a single solar panel on the roof of that place, and the local utility is gas/coal fired.

  • I suspect that maybe they produce globally as much energy as they consume, which is not exactly the same thing as being "green"...

    Living in France, I can already tell you that there is no way their stores in France can be powered by anything else but nuclear plants !
  • If they hooked a generator up to Steve Jobs' corpse they could power half of California.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Unless Apple's sites are 100% off the grid this is not achievable, PERIOD. They would have to put in their own separate transmission grid and renewable energy infrastructure which has not happened, so this is a bazillion percent false.

  • Or they don't know how electricity works... not sure which it is.

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