Greenpeace slams PC suppliers over toxic materials

Environmental group Greenpeace has accused US computer firms of dragging their heels in ending the use of toxic chemicals in their products.

Environmental group Greenpeace has accused US computer firms of dragging their heels in ending the use of toxic chemicals in their products.

Greenpeace has focused on the use of BFRs - toxic substances used to resist high levels of heat.

Greenpeace singled out HP as a big laggard when it comes to phasing out BFRs, even though the firm recently said it would end their use in product casings.

Greenpeace claimed it had been in talks with HP about BFR use for two years, and HP had falsely claimed environmentally friendly credentials.

HP in the UK has been proactive in dealing with proposed national recycling legislation designed to dispose of materials safely.

But much of the computer hardware currently being disposed of ends up in countries such as China and India, wherelow-paid workers are exposed to hazardous substances in makeshift recycling plants.

Greenpeace said Acer had been more proactive around discontinuing BFR use, but it also criticised Apple, Dell, IBM and Lenovo for dragging their heels over the problem.

Dell recently announced it would be ending the use of lead in its PC components, as is Intel in its networking hardware.

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