Toshiba aims on saving the environment with their Carbon Zero offset scheme

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toshiba-carbon-offset.jpgA few weeks back I criticised Sony for donating just 1% of the profits made on their Vaio FZ Graphic Splash Eco Edition laptops to green charities, of which I got lampooned by a reader for doing so. He probably thought I am a Microsoft/Toshiba/HD-DVD fangirl, which is obviously why I spoke negatively of Sony (typical Sony fanboy mentality).

Well, admittedly I am the aforementioned fangirl, but had it been any company, I still would’ve pulled them up on being stingy. And I’m going to prove so, by slagging Toshiba off for just the same reasons.

From today, Tosh is now offering customers the option to offset the carbon dioxide produced when making their laptops, by asking for £1.18 which will go towards planting a tree in an actual Toshiba forest in Cumbria.

These Carbon Zero laptops are all part of their greater Environmental Vision scheme which aims on saving the world by the year 2050.

As with Sony’s worthy intentions, this is all welcome, and every bit helps, but surely Toshiba could actually be offering more of a helping hand? Donating some of their profits to green charities, and pledging to donate £11.80 of their money for every £1.18 a customer donates would look much more noble than this token gesture they’re offering now.

We’ve seen carbon offset schemes launched by airlines and online travel sites, such as LastMinute.com, but they’re endlessly being ridiculed for missing the point, or not doing nearly enough to help save the environment.

Sadly, the only thing which Toshiba could implement to actually show they’re serious about being eco-friendly would be to stop manufacturing consumer electronics altogether. But of course, that wouldn’t help in the slighest, as the demand for laptops is growing, and another, possibly less eco-friendly company will simply fill the gap in the market.

It’s unfortunate that this Carbon Zero initiative from Toshiba reeks of being just a token gesture to conform to the green du jour movement, and that they’re simply taking advantage of peoples’ laziness and guilt. If customers really are serious about tackling global warming, we should take personal action ourselves rather than paying a corporation to do so for us.

Toshiba is actually missing a huge opportunity to do some good in this world, because unfortunately backing the HD-DVD format isn’t everything – even to me.

Toshiba’s Carbon Zero initiative

For more green-related issues, check out our Shiny blog Hippyshopper

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Katherine Hannaford