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How sustainable is BlackBerry ?

BlackBerry & sustainability


BlackBerry
First milestones, should be better Click here for score rapport: 11 out of 39

Sustainability summary

BlackBerry has achieved the D-label. BlackBerry has started to take sustainability into account. Most of the score is based on the brands efforts on partnering with initiatives to increase the use of conflict-free minerals and the elimination of hazardous chemicals like PVC. However a lot more can be done to prove that Blackberry products are green and fair.

Brand owner: BlackBerry Ltd.
Head office: Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
Sector: Electronics
Categories : Smartphone, Tablet
Free Tags: Phone

What's your sustainability news about BlackBerry?

BlackBerry sustainability score report

Last edited: 17 May 2016 by Ype
Last reviewed: 17 May 2016 by Mario

Questions about Climate Change/ Carbon Emissions

2 out of 6
1. Is there a policy for the brand (company) to minimize, reduce or compensate carbon emissions? BlackBerry implements several measures to reduce climate emissions, such as increasing energy efficiency of its products, data centers and buildings or the use of renewable energy (see link, page 16-18). Source
2. Has the brand (company) disclosed the annual absolute carbon footprint of its 'own operations' (Scope 1 & 2) and has the brand already reduced or compensated 10% of these emissions in the last 5 years? BlacBerry decreased its climate footprint of own operations (Scope 1&2) from 97,994 tons of CO2e in FY13 to 85,982 tons of CO2e in FY14. This represents a decrease of around 12.3% (see link, "Climate Change 2015 Response", and previous question, page 17). Source
3. Has the brand (company) set a target to reduce its absolute ‘own operations’ carbon emissions by at least 20% within the next 5 years? BlackBerry doesn't communicate an up to date target to reduce its actual total climate footprint (see link, "Climate Change 2015 Response"). Source
4. Does the brand (company) publish the annual carbon footprint that also covers the major suppliers, and does the brand have an effective policy in place to reduce these carbon emissions? BlackBerry does not publish a climate footprint that also covers the production chain, respectively its major suppliers (see link, "Climate Change 2015 Response"). Source
5. Is at least 35% of the electricity used by the brand (company) generated from renewable resources, such as wind or solar energy? BlackBerry communicates that it purchased renewable energy certificates (RECs) for FY14, but does not specify which share of its electricity use is generated from renewable sources. Also, type, source and additionality of its renewable energy supply is not clear enough specified (see link, "Climate Change 2015 Response"). Source
6. Do all new products of the brand meet energy efficiency requirements such as Energy Star (where applicable)? BlackBerry implements measures to increase the energy efficiency of products and accessories, but is not clear about whether all of its new products meet energy efficiency standards such as Energy Star (see link, page 23 & 43-48). Source

Questions about Environmental Policy

4 out of 19
1. Has the brand (company) eliminated PVC in all new products? PVC and BFRs were eliminated from BlackBerry's new products by the end of 2013 (see link, page 21). Source
2. Has the brand (company) eliminated BFR's in all new products? See remark for environmental policy question 1. Source
3. Has the brand (company) eliminated at least 2 of the 3 groups of suspect chemicals (beryllium, antimony and phthalates) in all its new products already? Beryllium and Phthalates are eliminated from new products. Concerning Antimony Blackberry planed to eliminate the use of all antimony oxides in new smartphones by the end of 2013. Whether this goal is achieved is not specified yet (see link, page 21 & 53). Source
4. Has the brand (company) banned the use of benzene and n-hexane in the final assembly of products? BlackBerry does not mention whether benzene and n-hexane is banned in the final assembly of products. Source
5. Has the brand (company) banned the use of benzene and n-hexane in the full production chains? BlackBerry does not mention whether benzene and n-hexane is banned in the full production chain. Source
6. Does the brand (company) publish its annual material footprint, or alternatively material footprints for each sold product, and does the brand have an effective policy in place to reduce the overall environmental impact of material use? BlackBerry implements several measures to improve its annual material footprint, but does not publish its annual material footprint, or alternatively material footprints for each sold product (see link, page 19-25). Source
7. Does the brand offer the charger as optional to the product? BlackBerry does not mention anything about offering the charger as optional to the products (see link, page 21 & 22). Source
8. Does the brand (company) source at least 10% of its plastics from recycled plastic streams and does the give a timeline to increase this percentage to at least 25% by 2025 ? By end of 2014, BlackBerry planned to increase use of recycled plastic in certain BlackBerry smartphones up to a minimum of 10%. However, it is not clear if this target has been reached (see link, page 47). Source
9. Does the brand (company) source at least 20% of its plastics from recycled plastic streams? See remark for environmental policy question 8. Source
10. Does the brand have clear objectives to minimize the environmental impact of packaging, by reducing, re-using and recycling, and does the brand annually report on these results? BlackBerry implements several measures related to more sustainable packaging, but does not publish the annual packaging volumes/weights per material type (see link, page 21-22, 43 & 47). Source
11. Has the brand (company) a take back program and is the take back recyling rate higher than 5% of the weight of the annually products sold? BlackBerry participates in several recycling programs, and mentions the recycling of 260,000 mobile phones in the US and Canada in 2013. However, BlackBerry does not mention what percentage of its sold products is recycled (see link, page 21-24). Source
12. Is the take back recyling rate higher than 10% of the weight of the annually products sold? See remark for environmental policy question 11. Source
13. Has the brand (company) an active policy in place to increase the product life-span of products, such as longer warranty periods or easy repair with easy ordering of spare parts? BlackBerry states that its smartphones are built to last, and that several initiatives are in place to extend the life of BlackBerry products (like repair, software updates etc.). However, nothing exceptional is mentioned in concrete. Source
14. Does the brand (company) use replaceable batteries in all portable devices? While BlackBerry mentions the use of a replaceable battery in some products, at least some other products have non-removable batteries. Source
15. Does the brand (company) provide online repair manuals for all products? Online repair manuals for BlackBerry products are provided via iFixit. Source
16. Does the brand (company) guarantee supply of spare parts and software updates for all products, for at least 3 years after end of production? BlackBerry does not mention anything concrete about the availability of spare parts and software updates after end of production. Source
17. Does the brand (company) give at least a 3 years warranty on all products? BlackBerry does not mention anything concrete about an extended warranty period. Source
18. Does the brand (company) publish a water and/or land use footprint and is there a policy to minimize, reduce or compensate this footprint? BlackBerry does not publish a land use footprint, but does publish an (incomplete) water footprint for its own facilities. BlackBerry states, just like in the previous year, to be working on a water reduction strategy, but none is published so far (see link, page 44). Source
19. Does the brand (company) publish a water and/or land use footprint that also covers its most important suppliers? BlackBerry publishes a total supply base water withdrawal of 122,767,613 m³ for FY12. But, more recent key figures, and reporting on policy measures implemented, are not specified yet (see link, “Supply Chain 2015 Response”). Source

Questions about Labour Conditions/ Fair Trade

5 out of 14
1. Does the brand (company) regularly publish an updated list of smelters that are identified in the own supply chain? BlackBerry published a list of smelters on its website, effective by December 2014. Source
2. Does the brand (company) have a clear policy to only source from smelters that have passed the conflict-free audits, and has the brand already achieved this for at least one metal/mineral? BlackBerry published a responsible minerals policy and indicates that a portion of all its necessary conflict minerals have an unknown origin. Source
3. Is the brand (company) significantly involved in at least 1 initiative that addresses the urgent appeal to improve the social and environmental conditions of mining metals and minerals; for example tin from endangered tropical islands Bangka and Belitung, conflict minerals from Congo, etc? BlackBerry also supports the 'Public-Private Alliance for Responsible Minerals Trade' (PPA). Source
4. Is the brand (company) significantly involved in at least 2 initiatives that addresses the urgent appeal to improve the social and environmental conditions of mining metals and minerals; for example tin from endangered tropical islands Bangka and Belitung, conflict minerals from Congo, etc? BlackBerry also supports the 'ITRI Tin Mining Supply Chain Initiative' (iTSCi). Source
5. Is the brand (company) significantly involved in at least 3 initiatives that addresses the urgent appeal to improve the social and environmental conditions of mining metals and minerals; for example tin from endangered tropical islands Bangka and Belitung, conflict minerals from Congo, etc? BlackBerry also partners in the 'IDH Tin Working Group', and the 'Conflict-Free Smelters Program' (CFSP). Source
6. Is the brand (company) significantly involved in at least 4 initiatives that addresses the urgent appeal to improve the social and environmental conditions of mining metals and minerals; for example tin from endangered tropical islands Bangka and Belitung, conflict minerals from Congo, etc? BlackBerry does not mention membership at any other endorsed, active initiative. Source
7. Does the brand (company) have a Code of Conduct (CoC) for both its own factories and those of its suppliers, which includes the following standards: No forced or slave labor, no child labor, no discrimination of any kind and a safe and hygienic workplace? All standards are mentioned in BlackBerry's supplier code of conduct (CoC) (see link). Also in its own operations CoC all these standards are covered (see link, next question). Source
8. Does the brand’s (company’s) CoC include at least 3 of the following workers rights: 1. a formally registered employment relationship 2. a maximum working week of 48 hours with voluntary paid overtime of 12 hours maximum 3. a sufficient living wage 4. form and join labor unions and bargain collectively; and in those situations where these rights are restricted under law, to develop parallel means? 1. Not mentioned; 2. No, maximum work week is set at 60 hours, but the maximum overtime hours are not specified; 3. No, wages must comply with applicable wage laws; 4. No, this right is mentioned but a parallel means in situations where these rights are restricted under law is not mentioned. The standards for its own operations are even weaker (formulated). Source
9. Does the brand (company) have a published list of direct suppliers that have collectively contributed to more than 90% of the purchase volume? BlackBerry publishes a list of smelters and refiners, but not a list of its direct suppliers. Source
10. Is the brand (company) a member of a multi stakeholder initiative (MSI), wherein independent NGO’s or labor unions are represented, that collectively aims to improve labor conditions and that carries out independent audits? Or does the brand (company) significantly purchase its supplies from factories certified by such MSI’s? BlackBerry is a member of both the EICC and GeSI, but civil society organizations do not have a voice in these initiatives. Source
11. Does the brand (company) annually report on the results of its labor conditions policy? Are more than 95% of final manufacturing stage production facilities monitored for labour conditions? BlackBerry mentions performing audits and publishes some information on these audits. But, whether at least 95% of its final manufacturing stage production facilities monitored remains unclear. Also, reporting on results, and follow-up measures implemented is not specified clear enough. Source
12. Are at least 25% of final manufacturing stage production facilities in high risk countries compliant to the Code of Conduct? BlackBerry does not specify, which share of its total production volume is compliant to its Supplier CoC and / or CoC of own operations. Source
13. Are at least 50% of final manufacturing stage production facilities in high risk countries compliant to the Code of Conduct? See remark for labor conditions policy question 12. Source
14. Are at least 50% of final manufacturing stage production facilities in high risk countries compliant to the Code of Conduct - including a living wage? See remark for labor conditions policy question 12. Source