When Apple announced that the its new lineups of iPhone 12s won’t come with accessories such as a wall charger or earbuds, many consumers were annoyed, dismissing it as a purely economic move on Apple’s part. But from an environmental perspective, it’s a great move.
To start with, the lack of accessories will enable smaller and lighter packaging, thus reducing overall packaging. Secondly, the move reduces the need to mine and use precious materials, which are often mined in less-than-great conditions. According to Apple, the changes will cut more than 2 million metric tons of carbon emissions annually — roughly the same effect as taking 450,000 cars off the road for a year.
Apple says there are already 2 billion Apple power adapters and 700 million Lightning headphones out there in the world, so producing more isn’t really necessary at this time. And if you’re new to the Apple ecosystem and want to get these accessories, you can ordered them a la carte on Apple’s website.