The greenest consumer electronic products on the market today may have a smaller environmental footprint than those sold a year ago, according to the latest green electronics research from Greenpeace. But the organization, which released the report at CES, says that the industry still has a way to go before they can claim a truly green product.
Green Electronics: the search continues (PDF) assesses the progress made over the last year by consumer electronic companies on their commitments to green their products. Fifteen major electronics brands submitted 50 of their most environmentally friendly new products – mobile and smart phones, televisions, computer monitors, notebook and desktop computers, and game consoles for evaluation.
This year’s survey (see last year’s report) had companies scoring higher and more competitively than last year, according to Greenpeace. Fewer products on the market contain PVC plastic and fewer hazardous chemicals are being used in products in general. LED displays, which save energy and avoid the use of mercury in backlights, can be found in more products today and manufacturers are using more post-consumer recycled plastic in TVs and monitors. Most companies have established better voluntary take-back and recycling programs and adapted quickly to the new requirements of Energy Star.
But not everyone was happy to have their products evaluated. Companies that were asked but declined to submit products were: Apple, Asus, Microsoft, Nintendo, Palm and Philips.
The Lenovo L2440x wide computer monitor scored highest with 6.9 points (on a 10-point scale) and is far ahead of the competition in the monitor category. Other product category leaders include the Sharp LC-52GX5 television (5.92), the Samsung F268 mobile phone (5.45), the Nokia 6210 Smart phone (5.2) the Toshiba Portege R600 Notebook (5.57) and the Lenovo ThinkCentre M58 Desktop (5.88).
However the report found that no product scored high enough across all areas to deserve the accolade of a truly “green product.”