Apple decided to create a closed production cycle, which will allow to make the device only from recycled materials. On the goal to stop the search for new resources, the company said in its Report on environmental responsibility in terms of results in 2016.
Apple taking steps to end dependence on mining for the materials that it uses in their devices, becoming the first major IT company, which is obliged to use only recycled metals, rare earth elements and other minerals. Today the company acquires the raw materials from third party suppliers. In addition, the company has a program of Renew the Apple, in which customers can hand in their old devices for recycling.
The company says it already has developed a plan for recycling the individual components. To create a closed production cycle Apple has created a robot Liam, able to disassemble the iPhone and sort their components. At the moment, has already launched two similar pipeline, which can parse up to 2.4 million units per year.
Some of the thus obtained components recently used for the production of equipment. For example, the aluminum iPhone 6 is melted and used in the manufacture of the Mac mini.
Apple stressed that the aluminium rely on their old products, the only source of the metal in the market which they believe have a high enough quality for re-use in future iPhone, iPad and other devices. Tin is allowed to use for processing and other resources, if the quality of the product to conform to company standards.
The company extracts from waste circuit Board copper, precious metals and tin. In the future, Apple plans to learn how to mine cobalt from the old lithium-ion batteries.
Another important area is reducing the amount of waste in the factories of suppliers. The report shows that from January 2015 the volume of industrial waste was reduced by 240 thousand tons.