TSMC Struggling to Meet Apple’s Carbon Neutrality Goal: Report

BY Chandraveer Mathur

Published 18 Jan 2022

TSMC lobby

A supply chain report claims that Apple’s suppliers are far from meeting the company’s goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2030. The lofty target is reportedly putting pressure on the company’s supply chain.

DigiTimes claims that Apple chip supplier TSMC’s progress towards the iPhone maker’s carbon neutrality goals is slow. Unnamed sources add that the foundry is forced to put more effort into reaching the goals. The report claims that the Taiwanese chipmaker is concerned about the cost associated with carbon neutrality and the challenge of purchasing sufficient energy generated from renewable or “green” sources.

Apple’s pressure on TSMC to meet the emission goal has had a domino effect across TSMC’s supply chain as well. The foundry is pressurizing hundreds of smaller industries that singularly cater to the giant to reduce their carbon footprint by switching to renewable energy. It reportedly warns smaller suppliers that they could lose orders if they don’t switch to eco-friendly processes. Some of these suppliers have allegedly sought assistance from the chipmaker and larger organizations. TSMC believes that its lower carbon emissions would help it remain competitive and improve production efficiency in the long term.

To recall, in March last year, Apple announced that over 110 of its manufacturing partners worldwide had switched to using 100 percent renewable energy. At the time, the company claimed that the move would reduce 15 million tons of CO2e  emissions annually. Apple also committed to investing in energy storage projects in California. The company also made a hue and cry about its eco-friendliness when it launched the iPhone 13 and Apple Watch Series 7.

TSMC is Apple’s primary chip supplier for the SoCs used in iPhones, iPads, Macs, and Apple Watches. It announced its own plan to shave energy consumption by 20 percent across its supply chain by 2030. Meanwhile, the demand for TSMC’s manufacturing process continues to soar. Simultaneously, production costs due to the environmental goals and associated green energy procurement costs are also rising. Environmental goals could be “major risks” for TSMC in the future.

[Via DigiTimes]