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Apple Drops Bombshell, Immediately Withdraws from U.S. Chamber

apple green logoBecoming the first major consumer brand to make a big statement against the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s position on climate change, Apple has decided to leave the organization.

In contrast to PG&E, PMN and Exelon, the utilities that in recent weeks announced their intention not to renew their chamber memberships, Apple is making its exit from the chamber effective immediately, reports the Washington Post.

In a letter to the chamber, Apple Vice President Catherine Novelli wrote, “Apple supports regulating greenhouse gas emissions, and it is frustrating to find the Chamber at odds with us in this effort,” the Post reported.

Apple’s move comes as companies increasingly are leaning on the chamber to quit fighting the general concept of climate change, as well as efforts to make emissions a more central part of the political dialogue.

Additionally, the companies are responding to the chamber’s call to put the science behind climate change on trial.

Last week, Nike signaled its displeasure with the chamber by giving up its seat on the chamber’s board of directors. At the time, Nike said it wanted the chamber to play a positive role in the climate change discussion.

“It is important that US companies be represented by a strong and effective Chamber that reflects the interests of all its members on multiple issues. We believe that on the issue of climate change the Chamber has not represented the diversity of perspective held by the board of directors,” Nike said.

In response to the fallout from companies leaving the business lobby, the Chamber of Commerce issued a statement, aimed at defending and clarifying its position.

Thomas Donahue, President and CEO of the chamber, said the chamber wants the U.S. and other nations to negotiate an international agreement that sets binding CO2 reduction commitments for each nation, “while allowing each to devise its own best path to meeting its target.”

Apple’s move comes as it seeks to clarify its efforts to cut emissions.

Responding to criticism over its past failure to disclose its emissions, the tech company last week revealed its total 10.2 million metric tons of emissions in its most recent sustainability report.

In April of 2007, Apple ranked dead last on Greenpeace’s ranking of green electronics manufacturers. Among other things, Greenpeace cited Apple’s refusal to disclose its overall emissions.

In this summer’s Greenpeace ranking, Apple was in the lower-middle of the pack.

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8 thoughts on “Apple Drops Bombshell, Immediately Withdraws from U.S. Chamber

  1. I am happy that a big name player like Apple is showing the US Chamber their views on climate change are not in line with most of their members’ thoughts on the subject; however, I believe Apple’s bold move was born from its marketing department just as much as its sustainability interests.

  2. Good for Apple! Why are others hesitating? Don’t they think the chamber would accept their dues in the future, after it changes its message? Now, how about the Nat’l Assn of Manufacturers, the other partner in ridiculous, who in the 1980s rejected the quality movement and triggered the loss of the US manufacturing sector, a loss from which the US has still has not recovered?

  3. damn the science…political correctness is all that matters…they don’t care if they’re respected…they want to be “liked”…so appropriate for the Nike’s and Apple’s of the world…good riddance…may we now have an adult debate please…based upon facts, not emotionally charged rhetoric…

  4. very perceptive Matt…for if Apple’s narcisstic move were truly born of their “green” heart, they would have been openly sharing emissions data for a long time and been leading the charge for others to do so…they sense a marketing opportunity, as does Nike.

    fyi John, the loss of the US manufacturing sector was overwhelmingly driven by the lower cost of labor in other countries, and even they have lost to each other in a steady succession of new “low” cost labor markets…you can bash unions for that if you want, but it really doesn’t matter, it would have happened regardless – and is continuing to happen to the former “winners”…just ask Mexico…who lost to India/China…who have started losing to former eastern block nations…and will eventually whine about all of the developing South American economies with lower cost labor than their own.

    No “association” forced GM to make bad cars. They did that all on their own…yet I still own two of them…go figure…

  5. Apple is trying it seems…they are releasing their numbers, they are leaving an organization that spoke their former language…”Crisis, what crisis”. It seems that the Chamber is one of the few remaining ivory tower icons.
    Instead of critisizing and looking for motive, we should try to accept the effort and expect the motive. Big business, corporate world needs to work very hard to regain any trust but I believe we should cautiously applaud their efforts.

  6. After all the old white men running the USA CoC retire to the great chamber in the sky, maybe we will start seeing reasonable responses to the significant issues facing this country. Their opposition to long standing policies like a minimum wage demonstrate their committment to maximizing profits at the expense of our health and welfare.

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