Update March 8, 2006: HP rises to the toxic challenge.
Few HP employees probably know that their products end up as e-waste, or that the toxic contents end up poisoning Chinese workers, many of them children.
Workers were greeted by a bright orange blimp floating above
theentrance to the HP international headquarters in California.
Hangingfrom the blimp was an image of a Chinese girl clutching an
HPkeyboard surrounded by an electronic waste (e-waste) scrapyard
with theslogan - "HP = Harmful Products".
A pirate radio station broadcast a message encouraging workers
andpassers-by to contact the HP CEO Mark Hurd to demand they make
cleanerproducts. The message was also delivered by phone to around
4000employees working at the headquarters.
"HP is a prime example of a dirty electronics company," said
GreenpeaceInternational toxics campaigner Iza Kruszewska. "It has
donelittle to eliminate hazardous materials in its products, and it
islagging behind some of its competitors."
Activists in China then delivered postcards to the employees at
HPheadquarters in Beijing along with e-waste components recovered
fromthe Guiyu, e-waste dump site in the Guangdong Province of
China. Theactivists, wearing boiler suits bearing the words "HP =
HarmfulProducts," urged HP employees to work from within and call
for hazardoussubstances in computer manufacture to be phased
"Greenpeace believes that most HP employees are unaware of how
theirproducts become toxic e-waste and pollute the environment in
scrappingyards like Guiyu, in China. Armed with information we
believe they willask their managers to stop manufacturing such
products" said Zhao Yangfrom Greenpeace China.
Some electronics companies, such as Samsung, Sony, Sony
Ericsson,Nokia, LG and Motorola have taken a first step by
committing to theelimination of all types of brominated flame
retardants and PVC plasticfrom their products on set timelines.
HP, Acer, Apple, Dell,Fujitsu-Siemens, IBM, Lenovo, Panasonic, and
Toshiba have, to date,made no such commitment.
Additional images Palo Alto ©Greenpeace/Mike Fox/zuma, Beijing
Help keep us in action. In order to ensure our independence, we don't accept donations from corporations or governments; we rely entirely on people like you.