Many shoppers now look for good energy ratings when they buy new gadgets or appliances – but that’s not the only thing you need to think about before choosing your brand.

Environmental group, Greenpeace, publishes a green consumer guide covering some of the top manufacturers – and in its latest report, computer giant Microsoft and games supremo, Nintendo come off very badly.

The Greenpeace rating takes into account a variety of factors such as the presence of toxic chemicals in a product, whether the company has a good energy-saving record and its commitment to recycling of discarded products.

The guide is updated every three months and the latest, published a few days ago, puts Sony at the top of the tree (although even the Sony score can hardly be described as brilliant since it gets only 5.1 out of a possible 10 marks.)

Others that fare pretty well are Nokia, Samsung and Dell but Microsoft and Nintendo are currently bottom of the league.

Nintendo in particular has an almost non-existent score – managing just 0.8 out of 10, although it has apparently improved slightly on the use of toxic chemicals and is praised by Greenpeace for its commitment to cutting greenhouse gas emissions.

Sadly, it scored a big fat zero on all e-waste criteria, hence its pitiful overall score – which is even well behind the next worst in the league, Microsoft, which gained a score of 2.15.

So, before you invest in the next new piece of equipment, step one is to ask yourself whether you REALLY need it in the first place. We have become a real throw-away society, often discarding perfectly good gadgets just because we want a newer version.

Then, if you still think it’s a must-have, log onto the Greener Electronics Guide and check the environmental score of the big brand-names.

Greenpeace says the guide is designed to make the electronics industry face up to the problem of e-waste. It is pushing manufacturers to get rid of harmful chemicals in their products and it wants to see an end to the stories of “unprotected child labourers scavenging mountains of cast-off gadgets.”

Clearly, if people start buying more from the more environmentally-aware manufacturers, this will provide a big incentive to the poor performers to clean up their act.




  1. 1 Rachel June 30, 2008 at 12:05 pm

    Can you send me the link to that guide please? I would really like to read it.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s



%d bloggers like this: