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Your Game Consoles Have Hazardous Chemicals!

Illustration for article titled Your Game Consoles Have Hazardous Chemicals!

Nintendo used to be bad for the environment. Now? Just sorta bad! Last year, Greenpeace singled the Kyoto-based game maker by giving it the lowest score in its "Guide to Greener Electronics" had ever awarded to a company — a 0/10. Part of the reason for this dubious honor was that Nintendo failed to provide any data about its environmental standards. Nintendo issued a response, and Greenpeace still wasn't satisfied. (In comparison, Microsoft got a 2.7/10 and Sony got a 7.3/10). Zeina Al-Hajj, Greenpeace's International Toxic Campaign co-ordinator points out:

Sony has a very good record in our ranking guide. They have committed to eliminating these chemicals from mobile devices. But why are we finding them in such high percentages in a console? This is a tool used by children in our homes. None of these chemicals exist in Sony's Vaio laptop. So if they can do it for a laptop, why can't they push this for the console also?

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Greenpeace has taken things into its own hands. Literally. The environmental organization has dissected each of the three major game consoles and examined how environmentally sound the consoles' innards are.

Results, after the jump. Onward!

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PLAYSTATION 3

• The console contains some bromine-free circuit boards — unlike the other two consoles

• The fan housing, however, has the highest level of bromine in a single component

• It contains PVC, but not as much as the Xbox 360

Illustration for article titled Your Game Consoles Have Hazardous Chemicals!



Xbox 360

• Only console containing DiNP phthalates — found in the AV cable.

• It contains the highest concentration of phthalates

• The console has more PVC than the Wii and the PS3.

• Its housing materials had lower levels of bromine, though.

Illustration for article titled Your Game Consoles Have Hazardous Chemicals!
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Nintendo Wii

• Phthalates level is lowest of the three and doesn't exceed EU laws limiting phthalate.

• It has the lowest level of PVC of the three.

• Unlike the PS3 and the Xbox 360, the Wii doesn't contain Beryllium.

FASCINATING.

Greenpeace Results [SmartPlanet Thanks, Adam!]

Greenpeace Results [BBC]

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DISCUSSION

@UFO: It's a lot more fashionable to hate environmentalists (not just hippies) nowadays.

I think the reason is that various environmental problems - um, probably not pthalates in video game consoles - are becoming ever more serious/evident. This makes people uncomfortable and defensive, especially if they fear they might be asked to change their lifestyle, and especially when they know they really ought to. This 'LALALA I'M NOT LISTENING' attitude means that it feel a lot more comfortable to dismiss environmentalists and their message, especially if you can do so in an even slightly humorous manner - it's a form of relief to laugh at something that, deep down inside, makes you feel scared or guilty.