Every day, more people around the world rely on laptops, phones and tablets to make their lives more productive and fun. Electronic gadgets can make our lives better, but the rate at which we purchase and discard these devices is having a serious impact on our planet.

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Consumers have expressed their desire for greener electronics, and the industry has shown that improvements are possible, but only if leading electronics companies apply the sector’s know-how and innovative spirit within the sustainability arena.

This 18th edition of Greenpeace’s Guide to Greener Electronics evaluates leading consumer electronics companies based on their commitment and progress in three environmental criteria: Energy and Climate, Greener Products, and Sustainable Operations. The Guide scores companies on overall policies and practices – not on specific products – to provide consumers with a snapshot of the sustainability of the biggest names in the industry. This Guide is not an endorsement for buying products from one company or another.

Remember! The most sustainable devices are the ones you don’t actually buy! Work to extend the life of your existing electronic gadgets, buy used products, and only purchase what you truly need.

The Guide to Greener Electronics helps to highlight the competitive, innovative aspects of the consumer electronics sector, and this latest edition profiles a number of new developments.  Acer rises in the rankings, thanks in part to ambitious greenhouse gas reduction commitments, both in its own operations and in its supply chain. A number of companies, including HP, Apple and Dell, have improved their performance in identifying and reducing conflict minerals within their supply chain. This edition of the Guide also integrates the evaluation of two Indian companies, HCL Infosystem and Wipro, previously assessed in the Indian edition of our guide. Wipro earns the top spot in the rankings, primarily due to its climate leadership. The company excels in both renewable energy uptake for its operations and more broadly with an excellent greenhouse gas mitigation strategy. Its lobbying for renewable energy policy in India exhibits the type of corporate advocacy leadership needed to drive policy change.

In 2011, Greenpeace re-focused and updated its energy criteria to encourage electronics companies to improve their corporate policies and practices with respect to Energy and Climate.

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While the industry overall has taken several strides in the right direction, crucial and growing problems remain: more people around the world are gaining access to electronic devices, and while proper electronic take-back programmes proliferate, the speed of collection is not keeping pace with the rate of consumption, creating ever greater amounts of toxic e-waste. Companies have largely left unaddressed the massive quantities of dirty energy embedded in their manufacturing and supply chains, much of it coming from East Asia. In addition, most companies have yet to meaningfully engage in the political process to create the ambitious action we need to make the greenest electronics and prevent the most devastating climate change impacts. With the right consumer pressure placed on these issues,  companies can focus attention on these issues of waste and dirty energy and build on the considerable progress already made in greening the sector, innovating beyond what even we think is possible now and creating an electronics market that is leading the economy toward a greener future.

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