Should Tim Cook cut down new iPhone launches to reduce emissions? - India Renewable Energy Consulting – Solar, Biomass, Wind, Cleantech
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Should Tim Cook cut down new iPhone launches to reduce emissions?

A large portion of a smartphone’s lifecycle carbon footprint is in its production – could be as high as 80%. Which implies that, if all smartphones were to be used for twice the number of years as they are used currently (from three to six years), the average carbon footprint could be reduced by 40% without doing anything else (without renewable energy, factories running at the same energy efficiency…).

If that is the case, why is a company like Apple releasing a new version of its iPhone every year (and this is true for most other smartphone firms) and tempting users to dump their perfectly functional phone for a new one, instead of enabling its users to extend the use of an iPhone?

But then, doing that would mean Apple will sell far fewer phones every year. Many thousands of Apple (and Foxconn) employees could lose jobs – a list that will most likely include Tim Cook.

And extending this logic, if every manufacturer of every semi durable (apparel, furniture) and durable (autos, white goods) product enables its life time of use significantly, the world could get into a recession, though CO2 emissions could decrease significantly.

Life can be knotty, not just naughty.

Assume that Tim Cook, the CEO of Apple, was pinned to the wall by environmentalists about the unnecessary purchases of new iPhone versions and is asked to do something about it. After having thought through all the above, what do you think he should do?

I know this is not going to be easy, even for a bright bloke like Tim Cook, so assist him by giving him your opinion through this poll!


Should Tim Cook cut down number of iPhone releases and enable users to use iPhones for longer periods?

Yes, he should, for the planet


No, economically poor idea


He should strike a balance


I’m glad I’m not Tim Cook


See my LinkedIn post on this topic

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