A few companies that are making a positive impact on the world.
On almost every website and in every corporate business statement, you will see a commitment made to sustainability in one way or another. Whether it’s reducing their carbon footprint, implementing eco-friendly business practices or even taking part in local and national initiatives; it seems that everybody is doing something for the environment these days, and rightly so.
In this post, we look at just a few of the companies that have put outstanding efforts into their environmental initiatives.
The first company on the list belongs to the pharmaceutical sector. Through their efforts, not only are they helping to drive sustainability, but in doing this, they are also helping to prevent illness as well.
According to an article released by BusinessGreen, Astra Zeneca is helping residents of the Dunga Beach Region in Kenya to reduce respiratory illness but replacing their traditional firewood stoves with biogas alternatives. Not only does this help to make good use of waste products, but it also reduces pollution, and helps to preserve the local nature, leaving trees in their rightful homes instead of being used for fuel.
As an added observation from this investment, because the women and children are no longer required to fetch firewood, they have additional time to focus on being educated or in paid work. At present, just over 50 biogas stoves have been installed, with more in the pipeline!
Disney is another great example of a global company doing great things for the environment. Not only are they already using zero net direct greenhouse gas emission policies across every single facility they operate, but they are also heavily invested into reducing their indirect greenhouse emissions too; with a specific focus on their electrical consumption.
As a company, they have a strict zero-waste policy, and they send absolutely no waste whatsoever to landfills. While this might seem a little basic, for a company of their size to have achieved this across all of their locations, this is nothing short of outstanding; and it takes a lot of planning, efforts, collaboration, and coordination to make this happen. For the distribution and manufacturing side of their business, they use specialist technology that saves water which has helped them to further reduce their carbon footprint.
In terms of being a world-leading company in sustainability, along with the fact they have a net positive environmental impact overall. Disney is on another level. Through various integrations of conservation efforts into guest experiences, they inspire action in their staff and their customers.
Google is a great example of another huge name that doesn’t just take their environmental responsibilities seriously; they are embracing a greener future and have made both significant investments and changes in order to improve the way they do business. Here are just a few of the things Google are doing for the environment.
As a leading tech company, it will come as no surprise to learn that they harness the power of technology in order to operate more efficiently, without using more resources. On average, a Google data center uses 50% less energy than a standard data center. As a company, they are well ahead of the curve and have been carbon neutral for over a decade already. For their global operations, they attained 100% renewable energy status in 2017.
Google has always been known for having cool offices for its staff. As part of their ongoing commitment to sustainability, they now create sustainable workplaces, with a focus on creating a healthier, happier, caring place for their staff to be when they are at work. With ecologically focussed landscapes and so-called ugly produce, that most stores and restaurants refuse to buy; they embody their green principals in each and every area of their business.
For many companies in the retail sector, they have faced a huge backlash over their environmental responsibilities. Given their production, manufacturing, and transportation obligations, it’s understandable why this has been the case.
Etsy has been a beacon of light amongst what has otherwise been regarded as a sector with a high carbon footprint. They were the first major eCommerce company to offset all their carbon emissions from their shipping. This means that any carbon emissions that are caused by their shipping activities are now completely canceled out through a range of environmental initiatives they have not only launched, but committed to, and achieved as well.
Some of the projects include the sponsorship of solar and wind farms, and by next year; they are on-target for powerful all their business operations with renewable energy.
This company has based its entire business around an eco-friendly core. As you can imagine, the vast majority of carpet and upholstery cleaning companies are notorious for wasting tons of water, using chemical-based cleaning solutions and pollutant producing machines in order to deliver upon their assurance as one of the best cleaning services money can buy.
Oxi Fresh has broken the mold with powerful cleaning solutions that are green in every possible way. They have developed their own unique cleaning method that uses no harmful chemicals and is instead powered by oxygen. Their cleaning process uses up to 95% less water when compared to other cleaning practices, and they use no truck-mounted machinery whatsoever. They operate in a highly energy-efficient manner, and they conserve vital resources at all times. Any bottles or packaging that gets used in their franchises is strictly recycled and repurposed.
Finally, this company makes an ongoing financial pledge to water.org each time a booking is made on their website using their scheduling tool. This cause is one which helps to provide safe, clean water to those who need it most in the world. Aside from already having over 100 active outlets, they are one of the fastest-growing green cleaning solution franchises in the country. For more information, please take a look at the Oxi Fresh Website here.
While it might come as a surprise to see an automotive manufacturer on this list, the Ford Motor Company have transformed the image of potentially one of the most significant of all the pollutant producing sectors. Ford is well underway with their 10-part environmental policy, and this includes a range of ground-breaking initiatives that are already starting to filter through to the rest of the industry.
In almost all their new vehicles, Ford is now using sustainable fabrics. The Focus and Escape models are now 80% recyclable. In terms of fuel efficiency in their vehicles, Ford is pioneering innovation, particularly in their six-speed transmission models. They now also produce a heavy-duty clean diesel pickup truck as well.
Across their many truck plants, the fumes from the paint are now recycled and used as fuels, and the vast majority of their factories also utilize geothermal cooling systems as well. One of the models that are distributed to the police, the Crown Victoria Interceptor also has an adaptable fuel capacity that enables it to switch between both ethanol/gas fuel types. In addition, Ford owns the largest green roof, and they are the only company to be awarded the EPA Energy Star Award for two consecutive years.
Most people will have tried an Innocent drink at one point or another; if not, then you’ve probably heard of them or seen their products in a store. Innocent have been using recyclable plastic for over 15 years now and have always held environmental matters close to the company’s core values and beliefs.
At present, their bottles are made from 50% recycled plastic, and 15% plant plastic; and they are well on track for their 2022 target to make all their bottles from 100% renewable sources. All of their packagings are 100% recyclable. They are also a founding member of the New Plastic Initiative which places them firmly at the helm of being part of the recycling revolution.
All of their products are made from 100% natural ingredients. Innocent has also formed a collaboration to help provide its strawberry farms in Huelva, Spain, with a more improved process for water efficiency for their farming methods. Not only does this benefit the local farming community, it also benefits other local natural areas, one example of which is the Parque Nacional de Doñana, a vital local nature reserve. Finally, they run an annual project called the Innocent Big Knit, that further aids a UK charity called Age UK.
Also known to many of us as HP; Hewlett Packard was actually the first company to publicly announce its greenhouse gas emissions. Ever since that point, they have been on a crusade to reduce their environmental impact through a range of diverse and successful projects and initiatives. They have completely cut-back on the toxic products that were once used as core elements of their products; ink cartridges being a prime case in point. Way back in 1991, HP launched its initial printer ink cartridge recycling program. By 2005, they had already recycled more than 70 million of them. By 2016, more than 3 billion cartridges had been made using over 90,000 tonnes of recycled materials; and more than 85% of their cartridges contain up to 70% recycled materials.
They are an active member of the Rethink Initiative, a program that makes it easier to handle e-waste using the eBay platform. Their newly launched HP ENVY Photo Printer, the first-in-class printer globally that is made from closed-loop recycled plastic. Another initiative that has gained immense traction is Ellen MacArthur's Circular Economy 100 project.
Most recently, they have joined a further schemed called the RE100 and made another very public commitment to source 100% renewable energy. Alongside this, comes a bold zero-deforestation pledge for 2020.
While it may surprise you to see some of these companies on the list for their efforts, they are here because they have recognized that sustainability presents their business with an opportunity to do good, not only by their people and customers but by our beloved planet as well. Sustainability doesn’t just make for a good policy, it helps to build a positive company image, a better working environment, more motivated and committed employees, and of course, to help protect the world we all share.
If you have any ideas about being eco-friendly at work, play or home, submit an idea and we'll write you a post on your favorite topic.