Apple's recycling efforts are saving it a fortune

The company recovered 2,204 pounds of gold from old devices, worth $40 million on the open market.

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Apple's agenda to be more kind to the planet isn't just about getting Friends of the Earth off its back, it's also about saving bucketloads of cash. The company published its environmental responsibility report for last year that reveals that recovering precious metals from old iPhones is worth plenty of money. The firm pulled 61,357,800 pounds of raw materials out of discarded devices, including 2,204 pounds worth of gold. Cult of Mac consulted the day's metal prices and found that the gold alone was worth $40 million. In addition, the company pulled out 3 million pounds of copper (worth $6.4 million) and 4.5 million pounds of aluminum ($3.2 million).

In recent years, Apple has devoted more time and energy towards becoming a sustainable business, and telling the world about it. At March's Loop You In event, the firm revealed Liam, a robot disassembly line that pulled apart iPhone 6 models and separated them into their raw materials for reuse. The company's secret weapon, however, is former EPA chief Lisa Jackson, who joined the company back in 2013. She's helped the firm sink plenty of cash into solar power projects and sustainably managed forests for the company. Hopefully, as one outfit blazes a trail for the financial benefits of environmental responsibility, others will follow.

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