Apple gears up in recycling

Eray Eliaçik
Apr 13, 2023

Apple will use 100 percent recycled cobalt in batteries by 2025.

Cobalt is a key element in the production of lithium-ion batteries, which power many of the devices we use every day, such as smartphones, laptops, and electric vehicles. However, cobalt mining has been associated with various environmental and social issues, such as pollution, deforestation, human rights violations, and child labor.

To address these challenges and reduce its environmental impact, Apple has announced a bold new goal: to use 100 percent recycled cobalt in all its batteries by 2025. This means that Apple will source all of its cobalt from recycled materials, such as old devices or industrial waste, rather than from new mining. This will not only help conserve natural resources and lower greenhouse gas emissions but also improve the lives of the communities affected by cobalt extraction.

Apple to use only recycled cobalt

As part of its goal to make all of its products carbon-neutral by the end of the decade, Apple said on Thursday that it will utilize solely recycled cobalt in batteries by 2025.

Apple has announced that it would employ recycled rare earth components in its devices' magnets and that its printed circuit boards will be assembled with recycled tin solder and gold plating.

Credit: Apple

Apple has been working on this initiative for several years and has already made significant progress. Apple also became the first company to use 100 percent recycled rare earth elements in its magnets, which are used in products such as the iPhone, iPad, Mac, AirPods, and Apple Watch.

In 2022, Apple increased the percentage of recycled cobalt to 25 percent from 13 percent the previous year. It now uses recycled materials for over 95% of its tungsten, aluminum and approximately 75% of its rare earths in product production.

Apple's commitment to using 100 percent recycled cobalt in its batteries by 2025 is part of its broader vision to make all its products with only recycled and renewable materials. This vision aligns with Apple's 2030 goal to become carbon neutral across its entire business, including its supply chain and products.


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  1. Anonymous said on April 24, 2023 at 10:16 pm

    Maybe Apple should also focus on designing products that last longer, if they were honest about having environmental concerns. But that would mean fewer sales.

    “pollution, deforestation, human rights violations, and child labor.”
    “To address these challenges and reduce its environmental impact, Apple has”

    Not for those reasons, no. They’re not philanthropists, they’re a business.

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