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Mario, Master Chief and Kratos in Greenpeace's "Clash of the Consoles"  (Source:
Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony tagged as toxic console makers by Greenpeace

Earlier this week Greenpeace posted a trailer depicting Nintendo’s Mario holding a Wii, Microsoft’s Master Chief holding a RROD’ed Xbox 360 and SCEA’s Kratos hit by a PlayStation 3.

No, it’s not the world’s greatest console gaming crossover – it’s Greenpeace’s jab at the three console giants for their apparent environment negligence.

“The games consoles market is one of the fastest growing in consumer electronics with over 60 million sold and 14 percent growth last year,” Greenpeace explained on its newly launched Clash of the Consoles website. “These consoles contain toxic chemicals and can contribute to the massive growth of electronic waste that's often dumped, causing widespread environmental pollution and health problems for unprotected workers.”

Greenpeace has been pushing for the entire electronics manufacturing industry to replace the use of toxic chemicals such as brominated flame retardants (BFRs) and Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) with safer alternatives, the environmental group believes that none of the consoles produced by the big three are toxic-responsible.

“We've checked how the environmental performances of Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo measure up on toxics, recycling and energy use,” said Greenpeace. “None of these three seems even close to making a greener console.”

Sony has a policy for eliminating the worst toxic chemicals from its products by 2010, but the policy does not cover PlayStation products, according to Greenpeace. Sony won marks for having the best take and recycling programmes, but was criticized for make the most power-hungry gaming console (128 watts).

In August, Sony announced the Sony Take Back Recycling Program, allowing consumers to recycle all Sony-branded products – including PlayStations – for no fee at 75 Waste Management Recycle America eCycling drop-off centers throughout the U.S.

On the other hand, Microsoft has a policy to eliminate toxicity by 2011 but does not have the voluntary take back program. The Xbox 360 Elite was also hit for consuming more power (97 watts) than the Wii.

The Wii pleased Greenpeace for its exceptionally low power consumption (15 watts), at levels at least six times below the other systems, but Nintendo was condemned as the worst offender on the scale of toxic use, policy and recycling credits.

Greenpeace slammed Nintendo in November following a report on “greener” electronics. Nintendo was placed dead last in a list of 18 companies due to the console maker’s lack of public disclosure on its chemical and recycling policies.

Nintendo expressed surprise at the content of the Greenpeace report, releasing a statement saying, “Nintendo takes great care to comply with all relevant regulations on avoiding the use of dangerous materials, recycling of materials etc. For example, all Nintendo products supplied worldwide are designed to comply with relevant global standards.”

The company continued, “In order to certify that Nintendo products comply with standards for hazardous chemical substances, Nintendo has established the Green Procurement Standards, which require our component suppliers certify that any parts including hazardous chemical substances should not be delivered, and Nintendo fully controls its products in the company.”

Microsoft and Sony have yet to respond to Greenpeace’s claims.

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RE: Electronic dumps
By KristopherKubicki on 12/12/2007 6:12:18 PM , Rating: 4
It is very easy for most readers here to dismiss Greenpeace.

It's easy for Patrick Moore, a co-founder of Greenpeace, to dismiss Greenpeace as well.

Nobody is saying Greenpeace has bad intentions in mind. But when Greenpeace gives Nintendo a very public 0 out of 30 rating after some intern looked though the FAQ ... well there will be backlash for Greenpeace and their methods.

Instead of bringing light to electronic recycling, the group has only managed to show their incompetence. And thus, the next time Greenpeace wants to stop above ground nuclear testing (or something of the sort), they'll likely be discounted for the fact that they can't be bothered to get out of their comfy armchairs (or even pick up the phone?!!) in the past, and their protests should be ignored.

RE: Electronic dumps
By derdon on 12/12/2007 6:57:32 PM , Rating: 4
The Anti-Greenpeace sentiment on this forum is really hurting. People are demanding more objectivity yet all they claim is completely subjective... attention-seeking lazy environmentalists... you'd wonder whenever somebody doesn't come from Los Alamos or have supercool weapons research technology done, some think he can't add 1 and 1.
Actually Greenpeace isn't anti-technology or anti-growth or all that people like to underestimate. Some may remember that it was Greenpeace who developed the first CFC-free fridge (Greenfreeze) and proved what everyone claimed was impossible.
I think having greener electronic products isn't a bad thing and neither is making a case for it. Your claim about deciding based on looking at the FAQ is childish. Normally Greenpeace sends out questionnaires and tries to get answers where it demands proves of and then publishes the results. You can't be serious about a backlash when you don't even know how they work.

Overall there are some really childish responses here.

About the co-founder thing. I think it's natural that people develop different opinions about different matters and that not all is able to be unified under one hood. That doesn't make quitters more right than others though.

RE: Electronic dumps
By 16nm on 12/12/2007 9:45:12 PM , Rating: 1
The Anti-Greenpeace sentiment on this forum is really hurting.

I like green peas. They're high in fiber.

Overall there are some really childish responses here.


RE: Electronic dumps
By GreenyMP on 12/13/2007 9:41:37 AM , Rating: 2
There are more effective ways to go about this. Had Greenpeace worked with the console manufacturers to educate the public and endorse electronics recycling they would not be in the news, but their ends would have been achieved. That makes me agree with those who think this is a PR stunt.

RE: Electronic dumps
By derdon on 12/14/2007 3:30:52 AM , Rating: 3
There are a lot of campaigns that are won on a direct level and public attention is never reached. There's a lot of work that you'll never see or hear of. And that's exactly the problem with your statement.
The false conclusion that you drew is that they're only making public attention campaigns, because that's the only thing you ever see.

RE: Electronic dumps
By robinthakur on 12/13/2007 9:57:04 AM , Rating: 3
This isn't an environmental propoganda website so don't expect to see the unconditional love for Greenpeace which you might be used to. I actually call Greenpeace's attitude these days far more childish than these replies, and they've clearly decided that by targeting higher profile items such as games consoles or the iPhone that they can bask in their reflected glory and steal some column headlines.

Nintendo has now made an official statement which contradicts quite persuasively Greenpeace's original damning piece, but I don't think their rebuttal got much attention. I think if nothing else, the 3 major manufacturers should sue Greenpeace for use of their relative trademarks in their ad 'campaigns'.

I think they do this because actually I don't remember hearing anything much about Greenpeace or PETA since the 80's ended apart from their their usual drone about why whale hunting is wrong. As an aside, I've tried Whale and its actually not very nice (and this is by the standards relative to the rest of Japanese food) and as a result, the majority of Japanese certainly do not eat it and anyone saying otherwise is not telling the whole truth. I'm also pleased to say that fur is very firmly back in fashion (in the UK at least) so much so that crazy animal rights nutjobs don't know who to throw paint over first :)

Hopefully, Greenpeace find something genuinely worthwhile to protest against which the rest of us can take seriously, and not this non-event. It reminds me of that bit in the Simpsons when Lisa is desperate to be outraged by something. "And who would want to be a party to a sport played with a ball made from the skin of an innocent pig?!?"

RE: Electronic dumps
By BMFPitt on 12/13/2007 10:35:37 AM , Rating: 2
This isn't an environmental propoganda website
You must be new here.

RE: Electronic dumps
By clovell on 12/13/2007 3:27:42 PM , Rating: 3
> Your claim about deciding based on looking at the FAQ is childish. Normally Greenpeace sends out questionnaires and tries to get answers where it demands proves of and then publishes the results. You can't be serious about a backlash when you don't even know how they work.

It sure doesn't seem like Greenpeace had any communication with Nintendo on this. Given that their methods haven't been exactly transparent, and that Nintendo's products are 'greener' in many ways than other consoles, It's very difficult to lend any credence to either their conclusions or their methods.

And thus Kris's point - these are gaming consoles, not public policy decisions. If Greenpeace cannot be even-handed and transparent in small matters, why should they be trusted in larger ones?

Greener electronics can be without the sensationalism and lack of rigor that Greenpeace has most recently displayed in this matter. This point is proven by their past actions, which have advanced their cause without resorting to such tactics.

RE: Electronic dumps
By derdon on 12/14/2007 3:09:03 AM , Rating: 3
If Nintendo didn't communicate (I don't know if they did) then it's legitimate to judge them based on whatever information they publish. It's Nintendo's duty to keep the information updated.

I think the real deal is that Greenpeace is raising awareness in an area that has received little and I think the E-cycling campaign is one of the most successful campaigns. They reached Apple, Dell, HP, Sony,... a lot of big companies and they all start their little internal machines to improve in that direction.

RE: Electronic dumps
By clovell on 12/14/2007 11:09:57 AM , Rating: 2
> If Nintendo didn't communicate (I don't know if they did) then it's legitimate to judge them based on whatever information they publish.

That's not exactly the case, see, Nintendo wasn't even afforded the opportunity to communicate. This was simply a Greenpeace driveby on Nintendo.

Sure, they're raising awareness, but they're doing by showing their ass. For that reason, the criticism they get is deserved. Welcome to the big leagues, GP - you may have all the right reasons in mind, but when you goof up, don't expect everyone to get a pass.

RE: Electronic dumps
By neothe0ne on 12/13/2007 3:48:04 PM , Rating: 1
I would agree with you that Anti-Greenpeace sentiment on this forum is "hurting", except that "attention-seeking lazy environmentalists" is the exact definition of the Greenpeace fools who compiled the November report of "green" companies. An outdated FAQ is NOT a reputable source of research, thanks.

RE: Electronic dumps
By derdon on 12/14/2007 3:11:23 AM , Rating: 2
A FAQ published on their website is information published by the company. If they don't maintain it, it's their fault and if they don't react to calls, then it's legitimate to take all published information from the company.
It's Nintendo's faulty communication policy that is to blame if they think they'd do better, why don't they show it?

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