Apple used 20% recycled material to manufacture products in 2021 – Report

Apple has released its 2022 Environmental Progress, ahead of Earth Day on April 22. The report covers Apple’s ongoing recycling efforts and clean energy initiatives. In addition to the report, the company also revealed that 20% of all materials used in its products last year were recycled.

Apple recycling

Apple continues making progress on its aim to only use renewable or recyclable materials in its products

In addition to releasing its 2022 Environment Progress Report, the tech giant also highlighted Apple’s recycling efforts in 2021. In 2021, the company introduced certified recycled gold into its products, and more than doubled the amount of recycled tungsten, rare earth elements, and cobalt it uses. Nearly 20% of all material used in Apple products in 2021 was recycled, the highest-ever use of recycled content.

The newsroom post further details that recycled rare earth elements are used in production 45% of the time, and while 30% certified recycled tin is used, all new iPhones, iPads, AirPods, and Macs use 100% recycled tin in the solder used in the logic boards.

In 2021, 59% of all the aluminum the company shipped in its products came from recycled sources, with many products featuring 100% recycled aluminum in the enclosure. Apple has also made notable progress toward its goal to eliminate plastics from its packaging by 2025, with plastics accounting for just 4% of packaging last year.

Apple also sent 12.2 million devices and accessories to new owners for reuse in 2021, extending their lifetime and reducing the need for future mining to make iPhone components. Ultimately, the tech giant aims to use only renewable or recyclable materials in its products.

“As people around the world join in celebrating Earth Day, we are making real progress in our work to address the climate crisis and to one day make our products without taking anything from the earth,” said Lisa Jackson, Apple’s vice president of Environment, Policy, and Social Initiatives. “Our rapid pace of innovation is already helping our teams use today’s products to build tomorrow’s, and as our global supply chain transitions to clean power, we are charting a path for other companies to follow.”

In addition to today’s report, the tech giant recently announced that its suppliers doubled their use of clean energy in 2021 through its renewable energy efforts, helping to avoid 13.9 million metric tons of carbon emissions. The move to increase the consumption of clean energy is a part of the tech giant’s goal of becoming 100% carbon-neutral by 2030.

Through moves such as using the world’s first low-carbon aluminum to produce the new iPhone SE, Apple continues to uphold its commitment to the environment on its way to becoming entirely carbon-neutral by 2030.

About the Author

Asma is an editor at iThinkDifferent with a strong focus on social media, Apple news, streaming services, guides, mobile gaming, app reviews, and more. When not blogging, Asma loves to play with her cat, draw, and binge on Netflix shows.