As mentioned in the lecture Environmental Management Systems (EMS) and Monitoring and Auditing are common tools used for scoping decision options. My research led me to investigate the EMS and Auditing procedure in place at Apple Inc. Such information was made available in their 2016 Sustainability Report (a link is provided below). It turns out that Apple has made a significant effort to improve the transparency of their EMS procedures by attaining a third party audit of their entire supply chain. Until recently there was immense criticism circling around the tech-giant due to issues regarding underage labor, ‘conflict minerals’ and other social issues such as extreme work hours. For many years Apple used a first party auditor to conduct and monitor their progress, which was then published in their Corporate Sustainability Reports. This was controversial as critics suggested that the Apple auditors were doctoring the reports and only the most glamorous aspects of the investigations were published for the public. Hence, the enactment of third party audits seemed to legitimize their report results. However, upon reading the report more thoroughly it seems that although Apple has made significant improvements to improve its EMS and carbon footprint there are still major voids in the reporting. For example, the report says that 95% of its entire supply chain is now free from underage labor, however, there is no mention of any additional information regarding where the 5% of breaches is coming from. It seems the report glosses over the negatives and highlights the positives (as can be expected in any report). It just made me wonder and trace my thoughts back to the original lectures on framing and how information has been presented and the implications of such framing on the public’s perception.

http://www.apple.com/au/environment/reports/

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