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Group Sues Apple over "Toxic" iPhone
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October 16, 2007

Group Sues Apple over "Toxic" iPhone

By Tim Gray
TMCnet Web Editor

Environmental watchdog Greenpeace claims that Apple (News - Alert) isn’t as clean and wholesome as its all natural name suggests. Now, the organization is demanding Apple clean up its act and wants them to remove environmentally harmful toxins from its popular iPhone (News - Alert).

Greenpeace says its analysis revealed that the iPhone contains “toxic brominated compounds and hazardous PVC.” The group released the findings recently in a report titled, “Missed call: the iPhone’s hazardous chemicals.”

"Two of the phthalate plasticisers found at high levels in the headphone cable are classified in Europe as 'toxic to reproduction, category 2' because of their long-recognized ability to interfere with sexual development in mammals,” Dr. David Santillo, senior scientist at the Greenpeace Research Laboratories, said in a statement.

While they are not prohibited in mobile phones, these phthalates are banned from use in all toys or childcare articles sold in Europe. Apple should eliminate the use of these chemicals from its products range, according to Santillo.

However, a California-based environmental group is charging the company with adding the reproductive toxin in its iPhone, which it says violates California law.

The Center for Environmental Health filed its complaint Monday under the state's Proposition 65 law, which require products that expose the public to chemicals that are reproductive toxins or carcinogens must carry a warning label or be taken off the market, according to the San Jose Mercury News.

The agency said it based its claim the Greenpeace report that initially discovered thephthalates, a group of chemicals that can cause birth defects, in the vinyl plastic earphone wiring.

Although Apple, like many tech companies, has been trying to move to more ‘greener’ practices, they have received recent criticism regarding the iPhone battery using glue to keep it in place. This practice makes it difficult to recycle the device.

Tim Gray is a Web Editor for TMCnet, covering news in the IP communications, call center and customer relationship management industries. To see more of his articles, please visit Tim Gray’s columnist page.

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