Authorities in China are investigating two Taiwan-based Apple suppliers over pollution concerns, according to a new report by The Wall Street Journal. Environmental regulators believe that both UniMicron and Foxconn are knowingly polluting their water tables.

The investigation follows accusations made last week by Chinese activist Ma Jun and a number of nonprofit organizations. They claim that factories in Kunshan, China belonging to the two companies are guilty of releasing water tainted by toxic metals into the rivers…

The Wall Street Journal (via TNW) reports:

“KUNSHAN, China—Chinese regulators are scrutinizing two suppliers to Apple Inc.AAPL +1.27% and other gadget makers following allegations by environmental groups that plants run by the two companies are pumping large amounts of toxic heavy metals into nearby rivers.

The allegations cast a spotlight on this industrial area roughly 40 miles west of Shanghai that has long supplied the global electronics industry. They come as China’s leaders and public are growing increasingly concerned about pollutants in China’s soil, air and water.

Local officials are investigating plants owned by Taiwanese companies Foxconn Technology Group 2354.TW +6.09% and UniMicron Technology Corp., 3037.TW -0.98% said Ding Yudong, the vice director of the local arm of China’s environmental regulator.”

The probe may take some time, but if the plants are found to be “severely exceeding emissions standards,” authorities will punish them. Of course, both companies have already issued firm denials claiming that the black-green fluid in question is compliant with local laws.

An Apple spokeswoman told the WSJ that the company has been working closely with suppliers and one of the environmental groups to ensure its environmental standards are being met. “Apple regularly audits its suppliers and doesn’t tolerate environmental violations.”

After encountering some criticism for supplier behavior back in 2011, Apple began publishing reports on its supply chain partners in an effort to maintain a greater level of transparency. It came under fire again last month, following allegations of labor violations at Pegatron.

  • Antzboogie

    Apple please clean this up the Earth matters too at the end of the day.

  • Burge

    WTF has this todo with Apple ? It’s not there company

    • Joseph Thebigragu Plaza

      It has everything to do with Apple. They are Apple’s product supplier/manufacturer for everything they make. How is that NOT Apple related?

      • Burge

        Apple pay them todo a job for them..they are there own company.

      • Joseph Thebigragu Plaza

        Point is that the waste is Apple related. Due to them making products for Apple they now have more waste than ever to deal with, especially with Apple’s new hardware push for this coming fall.

      • Joseph Thebigragu Plaza

        Lets say I agree with you; by your logic it’s not apples fault cause they only contracted them to do a job, so lets say I hire a human to kill someone: am I not at fault because I only contracted the Gorman; he’s his own company, I have no affiliation with him other than this contract, so by your logic I should not go to jail. Cool.

      • batongxue

        And Apple did, does and will be doing this on the basis that they know these OTHER companies are causing great pollution. Wake up, dude. Every fancy thing has a dark side.

  • Burge

    Foxconn charge apple for the service they do that includes the disposal of rubbish.. If Foxconn cut curners on this to make more profit that’s upto Foxconn not Apple

    • Joseph Thebigragu Plaza

      But if Apple never contracted them they wouldn’t have the excessive waste in the first place right?

      • Burge

        Or jobs..Apple pay them for a service end off its upto Foxconn on how they deal with the waste. Foxconn charge apple to get rid of any waste ..if Foxconn cut curners on this that upto Foxconn not apple , Apple have paid them for the service that they do for them

  • What was that about Apple devices being green (http://bit ly/151K92E)?

  • websyndicate

    Seriously has anybody been to china recently. That place it hurts to breathe its so polluted. I’m mean it bad bad bad. Like a cloud is constantly over Beijing.

  • Jerwyn Feria

    Seriously guys, Foxconn makes more than just apple products. Foxconn is not owned by apple, it is its own company which manufacture products. How much ps3/kindle/wiiU is distributed out in the world. Yes Foxconn may build apple products. Doesn’t mean apple is the only target to accuse or the only one that has Foxconn building things for them.