Apple has been criticised for its recycling and green practices by an environmental group.

The Silicon Valley Toxics Coalition director Ted Smith told the Mercury News: "Apple has always been disappointing. It's not taking responsibility for the life cycle of its products. It hasn't developed an effective take-back campaign, and evidently don't think it should."

This is the fifth year that the Toxics Coalition has released the Computer Report Card which recognize those companies who are going beyond compliance with US law and initiating takeback programs for their corporate and individual consumers.

Companies earn a total of 100 points for computer takeback program and policies, toxics/labelling, information to consumer about recycling programs, export/recycling, environmental health and safety.

HP, Dell, and NEC are ranked highest, with 54.5, 52.5, and 49.5 per cent respectively. They are followed by IBM, Sony, Toshiba and then Apple in seventh place with a score of 37 per cent. Behind Apple were Philips and Lexmark. Another 18 companies received no grade at all, including Brother, Canon, Epson, Hitachi, Oki, and Sun.