Apple deletes the US Chamber

Apple deletes the US Chamber

Summary: Is this man the only climate ally left for the US Chamber?Back in May I wrote about how the US Chamber was losing friends fast with its 'head in sand' position on climate change.

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Is this man the only climate ally left for the US Chamber?

Back in May I wrote about how the US Chamber was losing friends fast with its 'head in sand' position on climate change. Since then things have seriously  started to descend into farce. In fact, its now almost a PR badge of honour for members to publicly upbraid the hapless Chamber and its CEO John Donohue on climate change.

Apple is the latest to join the melee dropping its membership with immediate effect. Cathy Novelli, Apple's Head of Government Affairs ripped into Donohue with this public letter which you can see in full here:

As a company we are working hard to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions by relying on renewable energy at our facilities and designing more energy efficient products for our customers. We have undertaken this unilaterally and without government mandate, because we believe it is the right thing to do. For those companies who cannot or will not do the same, Apple supports regulating greenhouse gas emissions, and it is frustrating to find the Chamber at odds with us in this effort. ... We would prefer that the Chamber take a more progressive stance and play a constructive role in addressing the climate crisis.

Donohue immediately shot back in a letter to Steve Jobs (and not Novelli) reported in today's Wall Steet Journal:

It is unfortunate that your company didn’t take the time to understand the Chamber’s position on climate and forfeited the opportunity to advance a 21st century approach to climate change

And the gloves are also off over in Cupertino when it comes to environmental positioning relative to the competition. This from Apple's recently released environmental report:

Companies such as Dell and HP primarily report on their facilities as a gauge of their environmental impact. But switching off lights and recycling office waste aren’t enough.

This showdown with the Chamber won't do Apple any harm at all when it comes to the Greenpeace Cool IT index. Apple has gone from zero to hero with Greenpeace and I'm guessing Apple fans care rather more about what Greenpeace thinks than they do about the fusty Chamber.  Also, I have to wonder if the recent arrival at Apple from Intel of General Counsel Bruce Sewell has anything to do with this new found activism. Bruce's old job at Intel encompassed corporate sustainability and Intel has been pretty good at being on the right side of the big issues for some time.

Meanwhile over at the NRDC they are keeping a tally of the corporate friends lost by US Chamber CEO John Donohue:

It might be fun to run an office wager on which blue chip will become the next environmental hero by slapping the Chamber on climate change.

Topics: Emerging Tech, Apple, Hewlett-Packard

James Farrar

About James Farrar

James has more than 15 years of experience working on corporate sustainability issues from both the corporate and NGO campaigning perspective.

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63 comments
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  • the liberals are sabotaging USA

    Succombing to Green Peace like echo terrorists can doom this country in a few years.
    We must throw out all these polar bear hugging liberals ASAP.
    Linux Geek
    • omg..(-.-)

      always the first to troll the government-related blogs, eh?
      privatejarhead
    • Sabotage

      many would say ignoring climate change will doom the country and its economy faster
      jamesfarrar.1
      • And I'd say...

        ...that destroying our economy in the name of
        inevitable "climate change" will eliminate our
        ability to deal with it.
        JohnMcGrew
        • destroying the economy

          I don't think anyone, including, Apple believes that tackling climate change is destroying teh economy. For many companies, including Apple, quite the opposite-
          jamesfarrar.1
          • You'd be quite wrong.

            There's plenty of people who think that. All
            Apple can do is whatever they think will be in the
            best interest of their shareholders for the next
            several quarters.
            JohnMcGrew
          • next several quarters

            well companies like Apple were'nt built in 2 quarters. Investment in product and brand pipeline takes longet than that. at any rate I think energy efficient and less toxic products and responsible sourcing does pay for Apple in the short tun
            jamesfarrar.1
      • Climate change, shmimate change

        Man is so arrogant to think that we can have as significant an impact on the atmosphere that it's damn near farsical. Plus, it was 33 degrees here this morning in Atlanta. I was WISHING for some global warming this morning when I walked outside.

        And the only reason the term was changed to "Climate Change" from "Global Warming" is because nobody was buying that crap either. Especially since we've had record lows all over and one of the most dormant hurricane seasons ever.

        "Climate Change" is just about as provable as "jobs created or saved."
        SAStarling
    • Uh, okay... can you also prove how President Obama's predecessor wasn't?

      Or was he a closet liberal or something?
      HypnoToad72
      • Let's see...

        ...out of the gate his first initiatives were "no
        child left behind" with Ted Kennedy and expanding
        a Medicare entitlement. Hardly core conservative
        agendas.
        JohnMcGrew
        • how is this relevant to the post?

          how?
          jamesfarrar.1
  • What is it with ZDNet. Recent Liberal money pouring in?

    I mean, suddenly we have Dana and Harry and now James blogging political matters that have ZIP to do with tech.

    "ZDNet: Tech News, Blogs and White Papers for IT Professionals. Where Technology Means Business: ZDNet delivers the best tech news, and resources for IT hardware, software, networking and services."

    Suuuuuuuurrrehhhh. This blog relates to
    - software
    - networks
    - computer hardware
    - IT pros.

    Explanation (imho): Someone's paying ZDNet to pollute ZDNet with political blogs. Apparently The ZDNet bosses have issued a decree to the bloggers that it 'encourages' to fart out climate crap here.

    Hey, but I could be wrong. Facts seem to point otherwise though.
    CounterEthicsCommissioner-23034636492738337469105860790963
    • The explanation is a lot simpler

      journalists are liberals. Global warming is fast losing credibility as
      temperatures continue to cool across the globe (damn that sun and its
      low sunspot activity).

      What you're seeing is the beginnings of the hysterical rants as these "I'm
      smarter than you so I should be able to boss you around and feel all
      morally superior" types feels their moment of potential glory fading
      away.
      frgough
      • Projecting are we?

        I think you maybe projecting a lot of your own viewpoint into my blog post. I don't think I have ever categorised myself as a liberal. Climate science is uncertain but we do have consensus on the need to act. I don't feel superior and I don't mind being proven wrong especially if that means we don't face climate change danger after all.

        Certainly in both the case of Apple and US Chamber both sides feel their opinion is superior.

        I think you should look at the situation and facts reported and worry less about the mere scribe.
        jamesfarrar.1
        • "Consensus to on the need to act"?

          What "Consensus" is this? The only "consensus" I
          see is on behalf of those who wish to divert
          resources from others to their own pet agendas.

          Your "consensus" argument is barely even
          argumentum-ad-populum.
          JohnMcGrew
          • consensus

            the consenus of scientific opinion -- all national academies.
            jamesfarrar.1
          • Again, consensus is NOT science...

            even if the people with the consensus are professional with degrees in the sciences.

            In fact, there is equal (and perhaps greater) consensus on the opposite side, with as many (or more) professionals stating that global warming is not occurring or that the climate is not changing anymore than it has in the past.

            And in fact, there is very conclusive proof that the globe has had many periods in its history where the temperatures were much greater than anything we might be experiencing right now. But, what we're experiencing right now is a cooling trend. In fact, many of those people on the "consensus" side who thought that "global warming" was real a few years ago, are now moving to the anti "global warming" side. Those people have come to realize that the science had been manipulated and that the real science is proving the "global warming" is not occurring.
            adornoe
          • whats the point?

            I still don't get your point. Fine you may take the view that climate change is bogus. By businesses tackling the issue in the way Apple have described they do the result is better products and improved productivity through the whole lifecycle. And at a macro level this is evil because why? Energy efficiency and security hurts the economy how?
            jamesfarrar.1
          • jamesfarrar: You need to think a lot deeper...

            <i>I still don't get your point.</i>

            The point isn't that hard to understand.

            The question is, why invent a crisis? If there isn't a real crisis, what's the reason for inventing one?

            <i>Fine you may take the view that climate change is bogus.</i>

            It's not a view. The reality is that the science that proves "global warming" is not there. The original proponents and the "consensus" people had to change from "global warming" to "climate change" because they realized that the science could not prove the existence of "global warming". Moreover, the original science being employed to prove "global warming" was not sticking to the scientific principles to convincingly prove their "theory". Now, conveniently, their new catch-phrase is "climate change". Now, who could deny that the "climate change" does occur? So, if we can all accept that the "climate changes", does that mean that we have to accept government policies and heavy expenditures in order to effect the climate? That would be utter stupidity.

            <i>By businesses tackling the issue in the way Apple have described they do the result is better products and improved productivity through the whole lifecycle.</i>

            That makes no sense at all.

            Was Apple, and for that matter Microsoft and IBM, not able to produce "better products and improved productivity" because they hadn't complied with the new "green" methods? The GREAT products that have been produced up to now by Apple and Microsoft and IBM and all others, were in fact produced before anyone ever thought about "going green". Going green doesn't mean that the products will be better and that people will be more productive. In fact, "going green" will probably end up costing millions of jobs in the U.S. alone, and lost business and closing of businesses. What could be more damaging? With that scenario, nobody is going to be worried about "better products" or "more productivity". When government gets involved in manipulating the economy, the economy always sheds productivity and jobs and businesses.

            <i>And at a macro level this is evil because why?</i>

            It's not about a single business or other businesses trying to save money and saving the environment. If that's what this Apple issue is about, it could've been kept quiet and people didn't have to make a big stink about it. As it stands, people are making a big deal about it because it is about the bigger false issue surrounding "global warming" (or climate change).

            In essence, if a business does anything to save on energy and to create a cleaner environment, I won't find fault with it. But, if a business is doing anything because they're trying to capitalize on the good publicity they might receive, then I'm not going to support them in their efforts. Even worse is if a company is trying to use their reputation to try to buy favor from the big wigs in government. After all, if it wasn't because government is the main driving force behind the "global warming" hysteria, I doubt that Apple or any other business would be trying to capitalize on the issue.

            <i>Energy efficiency and security hurts the economy how?</i>

            Like I already stated above, I don't care if a company wants to save energy or that it wants to help in cleaning up the environment.

            However, why are you talking about "security". What would make a company feel insecure? Are you talking about energy independence?

            If you're talking about energy independence, then the crisis is a manufactured one. The U.S. (I don't know about where you live), can be energy independent without having to create any new energy sources. We can build atomic energy plants and we can dig for our own oil and gas and coal. We have more energy resources than any country in the world. Our security is being harmed by the liberals who want to drop oil and coal and all "fossil fuels" from our repertoire, and won't even allow us to build nuclear power plants. And for what purpose? With the liberals in Washington and others who think like them in other countries and in the United Nations, it's more about control of the people and "redistribution" of the wealth. Cap-n-trade (in the U.S.) is about "taxing from the haves" to "give to the have-nots". Redistribution of the wealth is about trying to buy votes, and when those voters continue electing those who "give them the most from government", then the politicians in that government are going to try to give them more in order to continue a one party rule which eventually leads to control over those people.

            Creating new energy sources will "create new jobs", like the democrats claim. What the democrats don't want to tell anyone is that, while there will be "new jobs created", the old jobs will have to go away. When you destroy a complete industry, like oil, you destroy millions of jobs, and that's in the U.S. alone. The "new" industries for the "new energy" will not be able to replace the many millions of jobs lost and the many businesses destroyed.

            There is huge dishonesty with the "clean energy" and "global warming" movements. The democrats have seized on those movements to try to advance their agenda of control over the economy and thereby the people.

            The democrats don't want the U.S. to drill it's own oil, but by doing so, they are forcing the U.S. to purchase it's oil from overseas where environmental regulations are severely lacking or non-existent. Does anyone think that Saudi Arabia or Iran or any other oil producing country cares as much about the environment as the U.S.? If we could produce our own oil, the environment would be better protected because of our regulations and because we care more. We still get our oil, but the environment suffers more because of the lack of "clean" regulations in those countries that do produce "our" oil. That' being highly hypocritical. The democrats want to clean or keep the environment clean, but they are in reality making the environment and the air dirtier by forcing our economy to purchase what we need from those "dirty" oil producers. If we do indeed live in the same world and we breathe the same air, we would end up with a cleaner environment all around by producing our own oil and other energy sources.

            So, with all that in mind, one can only conclude that it's not about a "clean" environment and it's not about reducing CO2 and it's not about worrying about "global warming". It's just about government intrusion trying to take control of our energy sources and industries which would lead to overall control over the people.

            Sorry, but, I'm not buying the Apple concern. They're just hoping to gain advantage over the others in industry. If Apple and all of those other companies that ship production to manufacturing companies overseas really cared about the environment, then they wouldn't be doing business with the biggest polluting countries in the world, namely China and India and Mexico and Korea and many others.

            I'm not buying the "clean" Apple, and not buying the global warming hysteria and I'm not buying the "consensus" science which is nothing but junk science.
            adornoe
          • According to who?

            The UN? Al Gore? The New York Times?

            "all national academies"? Really?

            If everyone is thinking the same, no one is
            thinking. That's hardly science.
            JohnMcGrew