TNC Business Strategy Research

Taiwan Apple’s Climate Promise Depends on Taiwan Partners Going Green

2021-01-13 11:46
According to Apple’s “2020 Environmental Progress Report”, the company’s global operations have reached the carbon neutral target in April 2020.(Carbon neutral: How much carbon is emitted; the same amount of carbon will be reduced. Reaching a balance makes the net carbon footprint equal to zero.) However, as much as three-quarters of the carbon emissions produced by the commodity manufacturing process still come from outsiders. “Bloomberg” recently named two Taiwanese manufacturers electronics giants like TSMC(Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co) and Foxconn Technology Group, bluntly saying that the two giants are still highly dependent on non-renewable energy, which will be the key to Apple’s success or failure in achieving carbon neutrality in all products by 2030.

Taiwanese companies account for a high percentage of Apple’s global suppliers because they dominate the industries such as contract manufacturing and build-to-order semiconductors. The key elements of Apple’s manufacturing machines include TSMC(which produces Taiwan’s most advanced chips for Taiwan’s iPhone and iPad) and Foxconn Technology Group, which assembles more than 100 million iPhones each year.

In order to meet Apple’s requirements, TSMC and Foxconn have also made plans. Foxconn installed solar panels in its Henan plant in China, and the green power used in 2019 increased to 224 MW(million watts), a 7-fold increase from two years ago. On the other hand, TSMC signed a contract with Ørsted A/S in July to acquire all the power generation capacity of Ørsted A/S in Changhua’s offshore wind farm. The scale is as high as 920 MW, which is the largest global company in history to purchase and sell green energy. TSMC’s efforts have been aided by a massive Taiwanese government plan to transform the country’s energy mix away from coal and nuclear and toward renewables and natural gas.