Apple’s been on a roll over the last few days, releasing a detailed supplier list for the first time, and joining the Fair Labor Association. But the company’s not just stopping with improving the working conditions of its supply chain.

It’s also working on improving its environmental footprint. The London Evening Standard is reporting that Apple has asked Volex, the manufacturer that makes all of its USB and power cables, to switch to halogen-free materials…

Why is Apple so concerned about having halogen removed from its power and USB cables? GigaOM explains:

“The presence of halogens in electronics is a danger, because when products are incinerated at the end of life, the burning halogen can release dioxins and furans into the atmosphere, which have been shown in studies to be increasing in presence in soil, ground water and people. Dioxins and furans are thought to be carcinogenic in large-enough concentrations, and in fact a 2003 study said that there is no known “threshold below which dioxin will not cause cancer.”

Wow, cancer-causing dioxins and furans huh? Yeah, it’s probably a good thing they’re doing away with this halogen stuff.

As MacRumors points out, this is just the latest move in Apple’s journey to become more environmentally-friendly — one that started back in 2009. The initiative, led by Steve Jobs and his A Greener Apple letter, saw the addition of an Environmental Footprint section to Apple’s website, and far greater transparency on what the company is doing to decrease its carbon footprint.

  • I would hate USB cable like in picture…

    • Spoiled kids these days…

    • Dan

      how else are you going to sync with the PC?

      • With wireless sync? Lol

      • But everybody don’t have wifi.

      • Anonymous

        You still need the USB (connected to the adapter) so actually use the wireless sync. So in the end you still need a USB cable. Last I think he was talking about the old school cable which had to be pressed on the sides so it can release the iPhone/iPod (not like the new ones that just snap off).

      • Dan

        when it’s time to sync my iPad with 64gb of data, I’d rather not use the wireless sinc, takes too long, i’ll stick with my cables =P

    • u need a USB cable with colorful flowers on it

  • Anonymous

    maybe if Apple made robust cables in the first place I’d only ever need one halogen enriched cable instead of having to keep purchasing new ones every time the cable splits!!

    and a question for the iDB mods: is there any way you can fix the Disqus login box so it will fit on the screen of an iPhone, its damn irritating that its too big for the mobile theme and makes signing in a nigh on impossibility thanks.

    • Anonymous

      Omg and i thought i was the only one!!!!!!!!!!

    • Anonymous

      Hot damn, that’s exactly what I thought, but I guess it doesn’t depend on the iDB guys, but on the Disqus developers.

      It really is a pain in the *** to have to zoom in and out and try and guess where the email address field is.

    • Yes I know. It’s not ideal but unfortunately there is nothing we can do about it. I informed Disqus about this issue and they gave me the usual “that’s a feature we are working in blah blah blah”. Even though it’s formatted all funky though, if you know your username and password, you shouldn’t have any problem logging in. Sorry about the inconvenience.

      • Anonymous

        no worries Seb, i just presumed it was how you’d integrated it into the website not solely a disqus problem. knowing my user and password isn’t the problem it’s actually seeing what’s being typed in the login boxes that i find frustrating. tried zolming out but the page just snaps back to normal view. oh well (:

  • Anonymous

    I’m only dissapointed that I was asleep while this groundbreaking story hit the blogs lol … Safe to say I don’t really care what the cable looks like or what it’s made of, I need to use it regardless so it’s just a means to an end.

  • Anonymous

    trivial to some, becoming greener is actually a pretty big deal. If I don’t care to deal with reality nor future consequences, I sure wouldn’t want to watch any documentary about Chinese cities where they smelt mercury(Apple circuitboards) in the open air, or consider breathing or drinking fresh water. #justsayin

  • Anonymous

    ah thanku, couldn’t get your sugeu link to work but google helped finding sugru instead 🙂

  • It’s good that Apple are innovating and improving their products so as to make it convenient and HEALTHIER to use by the general public.

  • smartsolutionskvm.com

    Its a good news that Apple is improving many of its products. It is believed that when halogen containing products are
    incinerated at the end of life, the burning halogen can release dioxins
    and furans into the atmosphere which are both carcinogenic in
    large-enough concentrations. So, by doing this Apple is putting efforts in improving its environmental footprint.

  • kvmstuff.com

    USB cables come in a great use these days to connect phones and tablets to PC’s in transmitting the data. I have this cable and it works very well.