Apple is now banning the use of two chemicals in the production of its iPhone and iPad, a move that could help to impact the health of the 500,000 or so factory workers who assemble Apple's popular smartphones and tablets. After a four-month investigation, Apple is now banning the use of benzene and n-hexane in its factories.
Though Apple says that its investigation yielded no evidence that benzene and n-hexane posed any hazards, the substances have been linked to health problems with the former a cause of leukemia and the latter associated with nerve damage. Yet, despite finding no conclusive evidence, Apple is taking precautionary steps and announced that these substances will not be used.
Given that the rumored iPhone 6 is a highly anticipated smartphone for the year, this move will likely have great impact for customers who care about corporate responsibility and sustainability.
The company was under pressure from activist groups China Labor Watch and Green America calling for the ban, and it's good to see Apple being pro-active. Apple has been leading the charge with its environmental initiatives and the latest move shows that Apple is doing more for its workers as well.