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Apple's Irish operations now entirely green

Apple is only using renewable energy to power its Irish operations and international data centres, according to a report on its environmental policies.

The company's data centres now run on energy sources such as solar, wind and geothermal, instead of coal or other fossil fuels, Apple said on its website. The centres house server computers that store and distribute songs, applications and other content from services such as iTunes, iMessage and iCloud.

A year ago, Apple was targeted by Greenpeace International, which ranked Apple 12th out of 14 large tech companies in a report called "How Clean Is Your Cloud?" The environmental group, which held protests at Apple's offices in Cupertino, California, charged Apple with relying on electricity from coal plants and gave Apple a grade D in the four categories it tracked.

"Increasing our use of renewable energy is our primary objective," Peter Oppenheimer, Apple's chief financial officer, said."We think these efforts will result in learning that other companies and communities can benefit from as well."

Apple's announcement shows "real progress," Greenpeace said, urging the company to disclose more detail on how it's working with utilities and state governments to achieve its energy goals.

"Apple's increased level of disclosure about its energy sources helps customers know that their iCloud will be powered by clean energy sources, not coal," Gary Cook, an analyst at Greenpeace, wrote in an emailed statement.

Apple now gets 75 per cent of its total power from renewable sources, up from 35 percent a year ago. Its four largest campuses, in Ireland, Germany and two in California, now use 100 per cent renewable energy sources, according to Oppenheimer.

© Bloomberg

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