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Corporate Trash

Electronic Waste

Is it 'hip,' or 'cool,' to be environmentally sustainable? That's a question that some of the biggest companies are asking about the world's most popular products and the answer is 'sweet.'

Take Dell. It recently held an "ideas competition" for environmentally sustainable computing. Two of the finalists were a PC that runs on hydrogen fuel cells, and another with a shell made of processed corn!

Then there's Nike. It recently launched, "Trash Talk," a high-performance basketball shoe made from scraps off its factory floors.

iPods are going greener too. Apple's latest contain no mercury and are sheathed in recyclable aluminum. Apple also collects old iPods: Customers bring them in; Apple recycles them via sustainable practices, and gives customers a discount off their next purchase.

Does it pay to be green? Time will tell for some of the newer product lines, but it's already paying huge dividends towards a healthier planet though. Last year Apple collected 21 million pounds of electronic waste, keeping it out of landfills. And they report that at their Ireland plant, just a partial switch to wind power should eliminate 2,000 tons of carbon emissions annually.

Now that's something to get 'amped' about.

Script by Gail Davis

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