How Carbon Neutral Is Dell, Really?

I am highly skeptical when big companies get trendy and start spewing cool. Lately going green has become the new black. Dell in particular has been making a lot of noise about being “green,” most recently bragging that it has becoming carbon neutral five months ahead of its own plans. Or did it? Spurred by a brilliant article in the Wall Street Journal, Katie Fehrenbacher over on Earth2Tech helps deconstruct Dell’s claims that it is carbon neutral, a claim that is up for debate:

  • According to the WSJ, Dell claims “carbon neutrality” by “purchasing environmental credits.”
  • Dell is dedicating $5 million to the carbon-neutral project, a joke compared to its annual revenues.
  • Dell is only neutralizing about 5 percent of the greenhouse gas emissions that go into making its products.
  • Mid American Energy Co., owner of wind projects in Iowa, is the biggest contributor to Dell’s renewable energy certificate offsets, says that the wind projects would have been built without Dell’s funds.

Dell toots its own horn on its blog, though without saying much.

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