Chinese company issues carbon-neutral earphones

In Tech
April 22, 2024


A Shenzhen-based company on Monday released the world’s first zero-carbon open-ear earbuds, the latest of a series of technological breakthroughs fast-tracked by China’s “dual carbon goals.”

The Cleer ARC 3, produced by Shenzhen Grandsun Electronic Co., Ltd., was launched in Shenzhen, a tech hub in south China’s Guangdong Province, coinciding with the global Earth Day celebration on Monday.

The device features improved AI functions and an open-ear design, which allows users to remain aware of the sounds in their surroundings.

Wu Haiquan, president of the company, said ARC 3 has obtained the carbon neutrality certificate by maximizing the use of recyclable materials, green electricity and equipment that consumes less power.

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Carbon-neutral production is a new yet burgeoning trend for consumer electronics. Apple last year announced its first carbon-neutral watch and has planned to make all its products carbon neutral by 2030.

Industry insiders said despite more food and beverage products having achieved carbon neutrality in recent years, it remains rare for consumer electronics, whose production can involve hundreds of components and a long supply chain, to make the same breakthrough.

“It is our hope to set an example and prompt other companies in the sector and along the supply chain to follow suit,” Wu said. “Releasing more carbon-neutral products into the market can also help nurture a low-carbon consumption trend.”

Established in 1997 mainly as a supplier for global brands, Grandsun launched its Cleer brand in 2012.

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The company is committed to zero-carbon production partly as a response to China’s calls for its manufacturers to shrink their carbon footprints, according to Wu.

Under the “dual carbon goals” of peaking carbon emissions by 2030 and achieving carbon neutrality by 2060, China is avidly pushing for the use of clean energy and application of green technologies in the manufacturing sector.

On the consumption end, the country is already the world’s largest market of new energy vehicles (NEVs).

Mickael Lefebvre, chief technology officer of Grandsun, said an ecosystem of low-carbon products is rapidly taking root in China, which benefits the development of new carbon-neutral products like ARC 3.

“If consumers have already bought electric cars and fridges that emit less, then it’s not a big leap for them to think their other devices need to have smaller carbon footprints. It’s a natural progression,” he said. 

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