Apple Inc. goes green investing in acres of Maine timberland

You can see it in the weather: the environmental conditions are only getting worse. Studies show the environment that we are living in is deteriorating as we strip its resources and pump toxins into the air. A large contributor to the environmental destruction is big companies, which require plenty of resources in order to function and are constantly accumulating waste that has nowhere else to go but back into the environment. This process of taking and returning pollution has a tremendously negative impact on the environment.

As companies become more aware of this situation, some strive to change these conditions. Apple has focused on expanding its environmental efforts, as currently it is using renewable energy to power 87 percent of their operations worldwide. Apple has established a self-imposed goal to increase this number to 100 percent for all of its US operations. Through collaborating and investing in a Chinese solar project, Apple hopes to switch over from the current 280-megawatt solar facility, where they pay 850 million dollars for the rights to half of the output. At the moment, the Chinese solar project can only handle 40-megawatts, so there is still a long way to go, but Apple endeavors to reach its goal starting with its California offices, which includes the computer center and 52 retailer stores.

In addition, Apple plans on using paper solely from trees harvested under environmentally sound conditions. In this effort, Apple has invested in sustainable timberlands in Maine and North Carolina. In Aroostook County, Apple purchased 32,400 acres of wetlands, rivers, and upland forest that is a refuge for Atlantic salmon, bald eagles, northern goshawks, and Canada Lynx. Although the land will remain a working forest for continued fiber productions, Apple’s purchase of the Reed Forest will ensure conservation of certain areas while also protecting employment and recreational opportunities. In North Carolina, Apple is protecting 3,600 acres of pine and hardwood forests and has pledged money to the Conservation Fund, a Virginia-based nonprofit.

Jackson, a former US Environmental Protection Agency administrator, noted, “before we go somewhere else and start asking and eventually requiring clean energy, you need to make sure you show folks how to do it” according to the Star Tribune Apple has begun leading the way for other companies by being environmentally conscious of the inputs in its production.

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