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Toshiba Satellite E105's Dull 'Silver' Finish

Toshiba's new 14.1-inch laptop, the Satellite E105, has earned the company more green laurels and a Silver classification from the Green Electronics Council's EPEAT program. That sounds great, but when you look closely, Silver has a dull finish.
Toshiba's new 14.1-inch laptop, the Satellite E105, has earned the company more green laurels and a Silver classification from the Green Electronics Council's EPEAT program. That sounds great, but when you look closely, Silver has a dull finish.Last year, EPEAT (the Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool) gave the Toshiba Portégé R500 a Gold ranking. So, what stopped the Satellite E105 from coming home with the Gold? Lead. And mercury. Toshiba, like many computer manufacturers, hasn't yet eliminated the intentional addition of the two toxins in manufacturing its laptops. Toshiba also failed to use any renewable or bio-based plastics material (though EPEAT did give it credit for declaring this deficit).

Also to its credit -- both from EPEAT and environmentalists at large -- Toshiba provides a take-back service for its laptops and its rechargeable battery pack. It's called the Toshiba Free Electronic Program and lets you recycle your old electronics regardless of the brand and at no cost to you. Toshiba also provides the shipping label. (Dell, to its credit, had been on the vanguard of such consumer- and eco-friendly measures).

Toshiba deservedly boasts that its products are compatible with two world-recognized directives: WEEE (Waste from Electrical and Electronic Equipment), which protects the environment by promoting the reuse, recycling, and recovery of electronic materials; and RoHS (Restriction on Hazardous Substance Standard), which seeks to reduce the use of manufacturing substances that harm human health or the environment. "The result? We've kept tons of toxic chemicals and other substances out of the ecosystem," Toshiba notes in its annual corporate social responsibility report. Those efforts include recovering and recycling tin used in manufacturing the Portégé R500 series at its Toshiba Information Equipment (Hangzhou) plant in China.

But given the tons of Toshiba-labeled plastics that are never recovered and end up in trash heaps around the globe, I encourage Toshiba to again go for the Gold.

Editor's Choice
Mary E. Shacklett, President of Transworld Data
James M. Connolly, Contributing Editor and Writer