The Consumer Electronics Show (CES), which is making an effort to be greener in 2009, officially kicks off this morning — and already the eco-announcements are piling up. Electronics makers are claiming their hardware is more energy efficient than the next, manufacturers are launching recycling programs, and devices that just make your life easier (such as navigation services) are being painted as green.
Here are 5 announcements already out by the first morning of CES:
1). Motorola Calls Up Recycled Water Bottles: The largest U.S. cell phone maker has launched a phone — the MOTO W233 “Renew” — that is made partly from recycled water bottles and is fully recyclable. It’ll be available first from T-Mobile USA this quarter. In addition to the more eco-materials in the phone, Motorola says the phone is also “the world’s first carbon neutral phone,” because Motorola is offsetting the carbon emitted for the manufacturing, distribution and operation of the phone with Carbonfund.org (wonder how they calculated that given the complexities).
2). E-Waste Recycling Ramping Up: At CES 2008 the North American divisions of Panasonic and Toshiba, along with Sharp Electronics, joined forces to form Electronic Manufacturers Recycling Management Co. LLC, with a plan to manage collection and recycling programs. This year, the group says it is expanding its current program to 280 sites in the U.S., with one spot in each state and hundreds more locations planned for the next couple of years.
3). Toshiba’s Green List: Whoa, Toshiba’s really taking the greener gadgets thing seriously. CES spokesperson Jennifer Bemisderfer told us Toshiba was going to be showing off a green product or two, but its display of its environmental goods and efforts is borderline obsessive. The company is showing off: a battery-assisted bicycle that can run 20 to 30 miles on a charge and takes a little over five minutes to recharge; its Portégé laptop, which EPEAT says is the most eco laptop sold in the U.S., and other EPEAT Gold-rated laptops; an LED downlight, which uses one-seventh of the energy required to power a traditional incandescent bulb; energy-efficient LCD HDTVs that meet Energy Star 3.0 standards; and additional displays on recycling efforts and environmental tree-planting efforts.
4). Garmin Locates Fuel Efficient Navigation: Satellite navigation company Garmin is launching “ecoRoute,” a free software upgrade that suggests fuel-efficient travel to users. The update supposedly adds “less fuel used” to navigation options in addition to “faster time” and “shorter distance.” Wouldn’t less fuel be used if it was a shorter distance anyway?
5). Energy-Efficient Displays on Display: OLED’s — organic light emitting diodes — are one of the most energy-efficient displays in development for our computers, TVs and cell phones. The trade group the OLED Association is featuring technology from six cutting edge firms: Cambridge Display Technology, Idemitsu Kosan, Ignis Innovations, Novaled, Samsung and Universal Display.