Apple Joins Global Renewable Energy Initiative RE100

Discussion in ' News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Sep 19, 2016.

  1. jimbobb24 macrumors 65816

    Jun 6, 2005
    Word on the street from friends in the business is that in ten years solar farms will produce electricity cheaper than everything- without subsidies. Still will need base load from coal or something but that is pretty exciting if it finally comes to pass. We will see as I am old enough that his promise has been made before and fracking has made natural gas cheaper than dirt but its potentially great.
  2. RedPlanet, Sep 19, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2016

    RedPlanet macrumors newbie

    Apr 2, 2010
    1) The tax evasion ruling on The Apple case, OR The Starbucks, OR The macdonalds, are Aiming at national tax rules. So while Apple is to pay up it actually is aiming at Ireland as creating unfair tax benefits at expense of other countries.
    2) apple has to pay tax under the global provision in the USA tax regime anyway. So it is a matter of which country is getting the tax.
    3) while countries like Ireland earn little tax but have the benefit of getting the regional head office and financial department of the company the countries that are hit see these companies being active in their country benefitting from social investments paid by their taxpayers. On a balance the Eu countries as a whole get less tax from apple as a result of Ireland tax incentive
    4) in Europe the large grunt of the tax is collected from income tax. While international companies can use Ireland options citizens and small companies can not. Balancing local versus global needs to be solved as this is one of the reasons people are unhappy and feuling populism.
    5) under USA tax law us companies can postpone paying tax (so relocation in time instead of geographic) if the money stays abroad for investment purposes. Seems fair but is the horde of money of apple parked over sees still a fair amount for investments or is it tax loophole for large part?
    --- Post Merged, Sep 19, 2016 ---
    What is the relation between population and temperature you are proposing here? That body heat is making temp rise? Or that higher temp invokes higher amount of population?

    Every human contributes to CO2 levels. Even those that only eat. To produce food or digest it creates CO2...

    Now to reduce CO2 per head is helping. We could also discuss trying to limit population growth which for many is a taboo subject. Or even try to reduce the population. Which leads us to very morally dubious territory.

    So if we have two levers being CO2 use per head and population what is so dubious about the science to zoom in on CO2 reduction?
  3. A.Goldberg macrumors 68020


    Jan 31, 2015
    Generally yes, so long as the associated environmental expenduratures and to some degree financial costs with the project don't substantially ruin the percieved value.

    Most of the world's solar panels come from China (which sucks because it doesn't support our industry- but whatever) where there are little to no regulations on handling the substantial amount of energy that goes into handling toxic waste. Not to mention to the energy expendurature required for building the panels and the environmental impact they have.

    There is of course, still the issue of effectively storing power in an affordable, efficient and ecologically friendly way. We have yet to figure that out.

    I doubt solar panels have much effect on passing bird in terms of frying them. The desert is already hot. There is however a problem with birds thinking the glare from many acres large solar panels are ponds/lakes and confusing them, wasting their energy looking for water and supposedly then dying as a result. It can also be problematic when birds fly into the panels thinking they are water.

    A relative of mine works in the energy industry. His engineering company was involved with the large solar boiler in Nevada I believe (boiler suspended in the air in the middle of the desert with hundreds-thousands of mirrors focused on boiler). The project was sponsored by the government and a number of big companies including Google.

    Basically the project was very difficult to get off the ground. There were environemental concerns about frying birds out of the sky, which ended up being a major issue (in the first year thousands of birds were killed). There was also some concern about turtle migration so a bunch of turtles had to be relocated and accommodations made.

    These investors (google, govt, etc) invested over $2B cumulatively, only for the plant to produce something like 1/3 of the maximum output... Which was a raised concern beforehand but ignored. Google ended up demanding they get money back from the government. Overall a disasterous project for those who were financially invested.

    Anyways, TLDR, I'm all for making our best efforts to minimize destruction of our environment and progress technology to acheive that goal. I'm not suggesting some dead birds is the worst thing to happen on earth. But I do think there needs to be a lot more consideration as to the realistic intended and unintended effects of some of the things we invest in. Just look at carbon offsets, it's a shell game with little oversight, no definite requirement of offset viability, and very little (<30%) of the money spent goes to the offset project (most goes to administrative costs, insurance, investors). And some carbon offset programs strangely have the unintended consequence of promoting environmentally damaging industries driven buy an economic benefit).

    Anyways, food for thought. That's my blindly pushing renewable energy rant. Again, not saying it's a bad thing, there just needs to be adequate recognition of issues.
  4. brueck macrumors regular

    Jun 15, 2010
    Are you implying that China is less green than the US? Because that would be false...
  5. 1applerules1 macrumors regular

    Nov 17, 2015
    It's not like we have sunny days 350 days of the year in Arizona or anything...
  6. Thunderhawks Suspended

    Feb 17, 2009
    Nothing was botched! A normal iPhone launch with demand outstripping available units.

    Anybody in manufacturing understands that.

    And, both things have nothing to do with each other.
  7. DoctaSfink macrumors member

    Sep 9, 2016
    I'm glad they are focusing on this despite the many human rights violations Apple's suppliers commit every day. It truly shows that Apple cares about the environment, even at the expense of human souls.
  8. Supermacguy macrumors 6502

    Jan 3, 2008
    Some simple google searching could answer your questions. No, photo-voltaic cells do not heat the air appreciably. They turn sunlight directly into electricity. There are other types of plants that use mirrors to reflect light onto a water boiler type assembly in the center of the field- those create the super heated air and have killed birds.
  9. mytdave macrumors 6502a

    Oct 29, 2002
    Apple doesn't run on 100% "renewable" energy. They consider offsets in their calculations. Offsets are imaginary. Just because your source of power uses some "renewable" sources, doesn't mean the actual power running to your facility was generated using "green" technology.

    On another note, take a look at that picture. Look at how many acres of land is used up in order to generate a "paltry" 50 megawatts of power. How many trees or other plants are destroyed to build solar farms? I guess if this one is in the middle of the desert, then it's probably not as big a deal. Not all of these things are built in a desert though (like the one in Maiden NC).
  10. dysamoria macrumors 6502a


    Dec 8, 2011
    No. That's a different kind of solar technique. That different technique focuses sunlight onto a water tower to boil water for steam turbines. They apparently resolved the bird killing problem:

    But that boiler DOES combust natural gas to "ramp up" the process. This makes it a combustion-powered system. I'm not impressed at the emissions being reported, either.

    Photovoltaics are still a better method, though, as mentioned, still need a system to take charge during nighttime. Cutting out combustion for electricity generation throughout the daytime would still be a massive improvement.
    --- Post Merged, Sep 20, 2016 ---
    I want to know what generation methods are in the requirements for this RE100 certification. The website has very little info. Are they including incinerators and other biomass combustion concepts as part of their "renewable" energy requirement? Generally, using "renewable" as the key term allows a lot of room for cheating.

    Incinerators (often disingenuously called "waste to energy") are the worst possible way to generate electricity (most expensive and most polluting).

    Calling them "renewable" is a marketing tool for incinerator companies to sell incinerator contracts to local governments. These contracts are in direct competition with recycling efforts. Because of the nature of the plastics, they are desirable fuel for incinerators. Lots of recyclable and compostable waste ends up being burned instead of being reused or composted.

    These incinerators require constant incoming waste to keep them going. This results in looking for more waste to burn when the local waste management and recycling programs are efficient. The better your community manages waste and recycling, the more starved the incinerator will be. The contracts demand a minimum of incoming waste that results in communities importing waste from other communities to avoid paying fines to the incinerator contractor. Aside from the pollution and increased waste transportation, these contracts have ended up causing financial hardships to communities. An incinerator contract bankrupted Harrisburg PA.

    As of this moment, the re100 website looks like the whole thing is little more than a rah rah corporate PR certification program.
  11. SadBoy Pro macrumors newbie

    SadBoy Pro

    Jan 3, 2016
    The problem with renewables is a very simple one. They take up far too much land. Land is not being made anymore and it simply cannot be sustainable to house and feed an ever growing population whilst powering all the infrastructure on renewables.

    Solar panels require phosphorous to be manufactured, but so does food in order to grow. We're running out of that stuff real fast.

    In the case of land usage, i present one example. Hinkley Point is a nuclear reactor, in order to generate the same quantity of power per year you would need to build 130,000 acres of solar farm or 250,000 acres of wind farms. Now I know people will say nuclear waste is bad, sure, it is very bad when improperly handled, that rarely happens in good old Europe, not sure about the USA because you lot are mind numbingly lame with nuclear power. However LFTRs are amazing, cheaper, safer, and significantly more energy efficient than conventional breeder reactors. Let's get our selves some education and not depend on solar, because those panels are really rather toxic.
  12. SBlue1 macrumors 65816


    Oct 17, 2008
    Well even more sustainable would be if Apples products would last longer, by having more base storage (iOS devices) or by having replacable RAM and SSDs (Macs).

    I saved an allmost dead 2012 MacBook Pro from the landfill by swapping the HD with a SSD and maxing out the RAM. A shame you can't do that with the new Macs anymore.
  13. sideshowuniqueuser macrumors member


    Mar 20, 2016
    So you are saying our bodies are generating the heat? And thus, it's all good as long as we control the population growth?

    Or that the more humans there are, the more greenhouse gasses we are producing? And thus, the human climate change is real? But you're still going to deny it anyway?

    Either way, holy **** balls, I had no idea deniers would be willing to go this deep into the depths of denial!!!!!

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