Greenpeace activists claim Apple may be preparing to take steps to address their criticisms of the company's environmental record.

Apple however doesn't accept it is guilty of the allegations Greenpeace activists continue to make, saying it "doesn't agree with Greenpeace's rating and the criteria it chooses."

The group has been vociferous in its criticism of the company, claiming Apple still uses hazardous substances in its products — substances other companies in the technology sector are abandoning.

Chemicals such as toxic flame retardants and polyvinyl chloride are used in Apple products. When these devices reach end of life they are disassembled, usually in developing countries. This process threatens the environment and the people who scour the dumping grounds, says Greenpeace.

Now the organisation is claiming that Apple CEO Steve Jobs recently met with a Social Responsibility Fund investor, "to discuss Apple's environment record".

While Apple has said nothing on this yet, Greenpeace claims an Apple spokesperson told the organisation: "We are sticking to our strategy, but we don't rule out that at some moment our strategy will synchronise with what Greenpeace wants."

However, Apple today denied any spokesperson said any such thing.

Greenpeace ctivists are hoping Apple – which has former US vice president and environmental campaigner Al Gore on its board – will seize the chance to become the 'green leader' in the technology industry.

To achieve this, Greenpeace wants Apple to develop a better recycling programmme and to use clean materials in its products.

A recent Greenpeace report showed Apple ranked lower than HP, Dell, Nokia, and Sony for its global policies and practice on eliminating harmful chemicals and on taking responsibility for products once they are discarded by consumers.

Responding to today's report, an Apple spokesperson pointed to Apple's official position: "We disagree with Greenpeace's rating and the criteria they chose. Apple has a strong environmental track record and has led the industry in restricting and banning toxic substances such as mercury, cadmium and hexavalent chromium, as well as many BFRs (brominated flame retardants). 

"We have also completely eliminated CRT monitors, which contain lead, from our product line. Apple desktops, notebooks and displays each score best-in-class in the new EPA ranking system EPEAT, which uses international standards set by the IEEE." offers a selection of eCards supporters can send to others, including today's special Valentine's Day card. You can browse these eCards here.