By Pamela Johnson with Loveland Reporter-Herald
Fire officials are expecting warm, windy weather Monday on both the Cameron Peak and Mullen fires, saying the winds may test their fire lines but hoping to keep the flames from spreading further.
The Cameron Peak Fire, which sparked in western Larimer County on Aug. 13, has burned 126,164 acres, making it the third largest fire in Colorado history behind the 2002 Hayman Fire and the still burning Pine Gulch fire. As of Sunday, it remained at 40% contained.
Fire crews worked by hand, with heavy equipment and with the help of air tankers over the weekend to strengthen barriers built to stop the spread of the fire, to douse areas of extreme fire heat to prevent more spread and to protect homes that are threatened by the fire.
So far, the fire has damaged or destroyed 99 structures, and evacuations and closures remain in place.
And with warmer temperatures and winds that could gust to 40 mph on Monday, the fire area was covered by a red flag warning from 9 p.m. Sunday through 7 p.m. Monday. An online fire report said these conditions are expected to “test” the work fire crews have completed along the eastern edge and the northeast corner of the fire, which have been the highest priority for containment recently. “We have some challenging weather coming up, which is going to test our fire and test our control lines,” John Norton-Jensen, planning operations trainee with the Northwest Incident Management Team, said in a recorded briefing on Sunday.
A second fire that sparked in Southern Wyoming on Sept. 17, has burned across the Colorado border in Jackson County and led to some evacuations there and in northwestern Larimer County. The Mullen Fire was reported at 140,140 acres and 11% contained on Sunday. Officials warned of a warming dry trend that will start on Monday that, with gusty winds, is expected to lead to active burning and significant fire spread.” Chip Redmond, incident meteorologist, said Sunday that the warmer, drier, windier conditions will continue on the Mullen Fire through the week.
“They’re still going to be cranking,” Redmond said in a recorded briefing. “They’re going to be gusting 30 even 35 mph, not on the fire but around the fire … The rest of week, its rinse, wash, repeat. I don’t see any reprieve this week.”
The winds from the Mullen Fire have carried the smoke throughout surrounding communities, including reaching both Loveland and Fort Collins. This is predicted to continue on Monday.
Article By Mike Baker
SALEM, Oregon — The warnings kept getting more dire: Even in the lush landscapes west of the Cascade Mountains, the climate in Oregon was getting warmer and drier. More people were moving up into the tree-covered hills, where thick forests were poised for ignition.
Early this year, looking to overcome the political stalemates that have long paralyzed decisions in the West around timber and wildfires, Gov. Kate Brown backed legislation to tackle the whole range of problems: thinning the forests, hiring more firefighters, establishing new requirements to make homes more fire-resistant and — looking to the future — a cap-and-trade program on greenhouse gas emissions that would assure that Oregon was doing its part to combat climate change. “We must be prepared for the more voracious wildfire seasons to come,” Ms. Brown said.
Within weeks, though, the plans were dead. Republican lawmakers staged a walkout on the cap-and-trade proposal, and the bills that would have provided millions of dollars to prevent and suppress wildfires were left on the table.
Months later, the scenario everyone feared came to pass: A series of historic wildfires this month has wiped out communities and killed at least nine people in Oregon. The fires have burned across more than five million acres in three states, and with dozens still burning along the West Coast, fire officials said this week that some may not be contained until the end of October.
For policymakers in Oregon, the disastrous fires have illustrated the consequences of delay and prompted new conversations about some of the lasting changes that until now have eluded lawmakers.
“It brings a new reality,” said Roger Nyquist, a Republican county commissioner in Linn County, one of the counties hit by the Beachie Creek Fire, which destroyed hundreds of homes in communities along Highway 22. “I think we’ve got to have a balanced conversation.”
Image Photographed by Amanda Lucier for The New York Times
State Senator Lew Frederick, a Democrat, said he was hopeful that the devastation Oregon had seen over the past several weeks, including hazardous smoke that blanketed the region for days, would help shift the politics. Mr. Frederick says that informal discussions are already underway about how to address wildfires, and that there is a chance the Legislature could convene in a special session to vote on new measures this year.
“How long will it last? I don’t know,” Mr. Frederick said. “I hope it lasts longer than it has in the past.”
But State Senator Herman Baertschiger Jr., who was the Republican minority leader leading the walkout over the cap-and-trade plan, worried that groups ranging from logging proponents on the right to environmentalists on the left might dig in during a time of intense political polarization around the country.
Given the ferociousness of the fires and the power of the warm, dry winds that propelled them through the towering Douglas firs of the western Cascades, the measures that Ms. Brown supported this year would have had little chance to make a substantial difference. But policymakers emphasize that adjusting to the reality of a warming climate is a long game — as are the strategies for combating wildfire.
Fires have always been a part of the region’s landscape, and long before European settlers arrived, Native Americans embraced controlled burning as a strategy to manage the lands. While the types of blazes that Oregon saw this month — summer flames stoked by dry winds from the east — are not common, they are also not unheard-of in the Northwest’s more recent history, going back to the deadly Yacolt Burn in 1902.
The tensions over how to properly manage the state’s timberlands have also been around since the state’s inception, when settlers in Portland were felling so many trees that the city got the nickname Stumptown.
The often competing interests between economic growth and environmental stewardship have been locked for decades in disagreements, including a battle over the spotted owl, which faced extinction in the 1980s as the industry cut through ancient forests along the coast. That dispute, which included lawsuits and legislation that drove a lasting decline in the timber industry, escalated to the point that President Bill Clinton had to intervene to strike a solution that became the Northwest Forest Plan.
But some areas preserved for wildlife and recreation have sprouted robust, combustible trees and underbrush, and the risk of wildfires has continued to grow. Since the environmental compromises of the early 1990s, the wildland-urban interface where communities are most at risk of wildfire in Oregon has seen the number of homes grow by about 40 percent. Population growth there and elsewhere has also raised the prospect of more human-caused fires.
Continue reading the main storyPolicymakers took a closer look at the issues again after the Biscuit Fire in 2002 consumed hundreds of thousands of acres in southern Oregon, but the efforts got bogged down in disputes over how to handle the timberland that remains a key part of Oregon’s economy.
Steve Pedery, conservation director at the environmental advocacy organization Oregon Wild, said his group was willing to discuss some timber removal around endangered communities or where forests have become overgrown. But he cautioned that such projects often did not make financial sense for the timber industry, which typically presses to push logging deeper in the woods and has the power to gain support from lawmakers.
“Timber is to Oregon what coal is to West Virginia,” Mr. Pedery said. He said he was nonetheless hopeful that compromise could now be possible — even if it included components that his group did not support.
Firefighting strategy remains equally open to debate, especially as homes and towns edge further into what was once wilderness.
In places like southwest Oregon, where natural wildfires used to keep the vegetation thinned, fire suppression policies have allowed the forests to grow dense and unnaturally high, said Norm Johnson, a professor emeritus at Oregon State University’s forestry program who helped develop the Northwest Forest Plan. He said the forests needed thinning or controlled burns to lower the risk of catastrophic wildfire.
But Mr. Johnson rejected the idea that more private timber harvesting was the key to protecting Oregon from fires. A consulting firm estimated that nearly half of the acres burned this month in western Oregon were controlled by private landowners, and Mr. Johnson believes that the primary reason those lands burned vigorously was because they had become densely stocked with marketable trees.
Image Photographed by Alisha Jucevic for The New York Times
In any case, he said, in the regions of the western Cascades that are filled with enormous Douglas firs, rare but voracious wildfires are simply part of the ecology.
Widespread thinning through those lands may be impossible — and unpopular among environmental groups — and prescribed burning can be unpopular if it ends up sending smoke into nearby communities.“When they burn, they burn hot, and there’s not much we can do about it except stay out of the way and also suppress the fires when they are small,” Mr. Johnson said.
There is broader support for thinning trees or creating barriers near communities that could be at risk from wildfire. And because timber companies often find such projects less profitable, it could fall on the government to strike up cost-sharing arrangements or to foot the bill — a cost that would be repeated over time.
“Managing the forests is like mowing the lawn,” said Mr. Baertschiger, the Republican state senator. “You don’t mow the lawn once and say I’m done forever.”
Ms. Brown’s task force that came up with wildfire management recommendations estimated the cost of treatment at $4 billion over 20 years to help ease the wildfire potential on 5.6 million acres of high-risk land. The task force warned that the cost of inaction would be much higher.
“This is 100 years in the making,” said Matt Donegan, who chaired Ms. Brown’s wildfire council. “It’s going to take a long, devoted, faithful effort to have any real impacts or results.”
Adding another layer of complication is that many of the lands in need of management are owned by the federal government, requiring coordination and approval from its agencies.
Federal agencies have long fallen short of their forest-restoration goals but have worked in recent years to form partnerships to draw in state funding. Mr. Donegan said he understood the philosophical aversion to the idea of states with tight budgets contributing millions of dollars to manage federal lands, but he said he was hopeful that spending the money could help make forests less vulnerable to disaster.
Other parts of the governor’s plan included embracing some of the lessons California learned during devastating wildfires over the past few years, after which the state began requiring utilities to improve transmission-line management and consider pre-emptive electrical shutdowns during risky weather events. Officials in Oregon said at least 13 of the latest fires were started from downed power lines in the area of the devastating Beachie Creek blaze.
The Oregon wildfire council also proposed more air monitoring and filtering for days when fires blanket the West Coast in acrid smoke, as they did last week.
Mr. Donegan said he was hopeful that the dug-in sides would now be able to agree on some compromise strategies, noting that he had heard from legislators in recent days who have not historically been engaged on the wildfire issue but are now looking for solutions.
Fire retardant covered a pool next to a mobile home park in Talent.Oregon has looked at measures that could make communities in wildland fire areas more fire resistant. A lot of the proposed actions would be costly. The council found that Oregon cut its firefighting personnel during the financial crisis more than a decade ago but failed to reverse those cutbacks even as wildfire activity grew. The council called for adding dozens of forestry workers, as well as modernizing the firefighting fleet, including buying new air tankers.The state has also looked at measures that could alter communities in wildland fire areas to make them more fire resistant. That could include working with landowners to clear possible ignition sources or to use building materials less likely to catch fire from an ember.
But, as with other issues, there is disagreement about how to make that happen. The governor’s council proposed altering building codes in wildfire-prone areas. Mr. Baertschiger was not so sure about that idea.
“A lot of these folks live there because they don’t want government intervention,” he said.
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More companies are shifting priorities by using business intelligence to not only save on costs but to also become environmentally aware. Business intelligence's ability to keep track of performance, as well as alert decision makers on behavioural changes, make it a complementary approach as demonstrated by the desire by many companies to become more eco-friendly. Even then, there is need for a clear roadmap that will tie in business intelligence with green initiatives.
Why Going Green is Important
The continued depletion of natural resources has led corporations that have large energy requirements to become more environmentally aware than ever. This is because not only do green initiatives save on costs, reuse resources and meet compliance requirements, but they also help to create brand recognition among customers.
Companies that are seen as being environmentally sensitive tend to create a vision of care. This provides the benefit of perceptions and practicality with the broader effects going beyond the organization. However, the ability to save money by lowering the use of energy and power is more important. Besides lowering the consumption of energy, the technology adoption organizations also invest in R&D efforts and support social action initiatives that are geared towards environmentally friendly products as well as internal processes. This has broader effects on the environment at large.
List of Companies that Have Great Environmental Initiatives
1. Ford Motor Company
Automotive companies are known to be among the heaviest polluters. However, Ford Motor Company is changing this narrative through their ten-part environmental policy that they have implemented for years. The company uses sustainable fabrics in its vehicles while 80% of both its Focus and Escape vehicles are recyclable. The company also focuses on fuel efficiency, particularly on the six-speed transmission, offering a clean diesel heavy duty pickup truck. Furthermore, the paint fumes in the company's plant in Michigan are recycled as fuel.
Ford's factories also use Geothermal cooling systems while the Crown Victoria Interceptor that is distributed to the police has a fuel capacity that is flexible, making it able to run on either ethanol or gas. Additionally, Ford owns the world's largest green roof and is the only company to have won the EPA Energy Star Award twice in a row.
Disney is determined to please companies that have made it a giant by using zero net direct greenhouse gas emission policies within all its facilities. In addition, it is working at reducing the indirect greenhouse gas emissions through the reduction of electrical consumption. Disney also has a zero waste policy meaning that there is nothing that would end up in landfills. The entertainment giant also uses technology that saves water and is working on lowering the footprint of its product manufacturing and distribution. This is tied up to the company's policy of having a net positive environmental impact that has made Disney a leader in environmental responsibility.
3. Fisher Investments
The company has initiated the Redwoods and Climate Change Initiative that is aimed at contributing towards the preservation of California's native Redwoods through cutting down on emissions and gasses that threaten their existence. More specifically, the company employs a plethora of ways in helping the environment through materials, as well as adjustable thermostats. Ultimately, the company's commitment to reducing their footprint is unwavering.
Hewlett-Packard is one of the first companies to have reported its greenhouse gas emissions, after which they have initiated plans that are aimed at reducing emissions and cutting back on toxic substances used in manufacturing its products like cartridges. The company also has an aggressive recycling program that ensures most of the manufacturing waste does not end up in landfills. Furthermore, it has taken the lead in spreading word on the importance of environmental responsibility in its ads that promote green initiatives.
5. Johnson & Johnson
For more than 20 years now, this company has taken the lead in manufacturing personal care products that are environmentally responsible. It also has initiatives that reduce waste in the course of manufacturing and distribution through use of sustainable products and packaging methods where possible. The company also owns a fleet of hybrid vehicles that it also operates.
Nike is keen to highlight the value of green initiatives through its advertising in addition to putting the great ideas into practice. Its line of sustainable products is made using environmentally preferred materials like recycled polyester. The company also uses renewable energy sources in manufacturing. Moreover, Nike has pressed 650 of its suppliers in 52 countries to develop and implement written environmental policies.
7. Ebay Eco-Initiatives
This company has its focus on environmental sustainability. This company has made it possible for people to exchange or reuse goods instead of throwing them away; thus not only increasing the lifespan of these products but also keeping them off landfills. The company also has a classified section where users are able to sell or buy used furniture, household appliances as well as other items that are hard to ship within the local community. The company has also partnered with United Stated Postal Service (USPS) to ensure green supply when it comes to shipping. Together, these two entities are co branded in environmentally friendly Priority Mail packaging that has earned them Cradle-to-Cradle certification.
8. Starbucks Stores Go Green
This company embraces principles of environmental sustainability across the board. The company not only purchases Fair Trade Certified and Certified organic coffee but also focuses on achieving LED certifications for its new outlets. By creating 'green' stores, the company is able to reduce operating costs as well as minimize the impact of business practices on the environment. In addition, the company has a green building strategy that includes adjusting temperatures for its air-conditioned stores from the standard that is 72o to 75o F and purchasing cabinetry that is made using 90% post industrial materials while incorporating low-flow water valves.
9. Google Environmental Innovations
This business innovator is another leader in embracing a greener future with its green supply chain management practices and environmental sustainability. The company demonstrates its commitment to going green through initiatives like powering its facilities with renewable energy sources, hosting farmers' markets as well as sustainable cooking seminars and bringing goats to trim grass. Google also has in place an environmentally aware corporate culture, solidifying its reputation of being one of the world's most forward thinking companies.
Overall, regardless of the initiatives that a company may embrace, businesses will do well to monitor these initiatives and identify ways of becoming more efficient over time.
Supply Chain Management Sustainability: What is it? What are the benefits?
In the pursuit of sustainable growth, organizations must extend their commitment to responsible business practices into their supply chains. They should proactively manage and seek to improve the environmental, social, and economic performance of their supply chain—not only to meet societal expectations or regulatory requirements, but also to drive their own success.
Avetta is proud to support our customers on their journey to sustainability. We help them to manage environmental, social, financial and economic impacts and grow long-term value throughout the supply chain through prequalification, document management, auditing, employee-level qualification and training, insurance verification, and business intelligence.
What Makes a Supply Chain Sustainable?
A supply chain is sustainable if it has long-term support in both natural and social aspects. In other words, a sustainable supply chain knows what its limitations are when it comes to social and environmental resources and is able to operate within these limits. The focus is on what will last rather than just what is legal, ethical, or responsible. In order to make improvements in sustainability, a company must be able to track, measure, and analyze information about the environmental and social impacts it is creating. It becomes even more important to have precise data when it comes to risks, costs, and compliance, so that supply chains can more accurately predict what will be sustainable and what won’t.
A company looking to increase sustainability from their suppliers can begin by identifying challenges their suppliers may be facing and then make an effort to support them. Communicating expectations about sustainability will help suppliers to see the long-term goals and work with you to reach them. Next conduct an assessment or have suppliers fill out a questionnaire so you can collect data and find out where improvements need to be made. Finally, initiate a training process to ensure everyone knows the protocol for achieving sustainability.
Link to site below!
Knowing how to reduce waste at your business is an important part of your sustainability efforts, but it can be a challenge. It’s one of the top issues that I find all businesses struggling with, regardless of how much they’re already doing to be sustainable.
As a society, we send ridiculous amounts of waste to the landfill. All of this waste represents misspent resources – both natural and financial. We’re using natural resources to create products that ultimately become garbage. And, of course, it costs us money to buy those products that ultimately end up in the landfill.
How do we stop this?
Waste at the Davis Street Transfer Station in San Leandro.
To start, we can think about the three R’s of recycling: reduce, reuse, recycle. We’ve heard these repeated many times, but let’s take a closer look at how they can be applied to help us reduce waste at work.
Step 1: Reduce Waste Start by eliminating waste at the source. The best way to do this is to do a waste audit.
Take a look at what is in your garbage, recycling, and compost bins. Ask yourself, “Is there something that we can do to avoid using or purchasing that product?”
For example, if you find that there is packaging waste, can you either work with your vendors to eliminate that or purchase items in bulk? If the waste is a result of your manufacturing, can you further streamline your operations to minimize or eliminate that waste?
One restaurant that I worked with was already recycling and composting quite a bit when they noticed that plastic straws made up a significant part of their waste stream. They then took two concrete steps to change this.
First, they stopped automatically handing out straws and instead posted small signs on every table letting customers know that straws were available upon request.
Second, they researched the use of paper straws that can be composted and made the switch. Using fewer straws allowed them to absorb the slightly higher cost of the compostable straws. By paying attention, they were able to make changes and reduce the waste that they were sending to the landfill.
Step 2: Reuse All That You Can
After you’ve reduced all that you can, look at what remains and identify items that can be reused. An important part of this might involve purchasing reusable items rather than disposable ones, which is an obvious way to reduce your waste stream.
It can cost a bit more upfront, but it will save you money in the long run because you won’t need to keep purchasing disposable items over and over again. An example of this would be paper cups, paper plates, and plastic utensils in the employee kitchen – just replace them with real plates and silverware.
One business that I’ve worked with decided to install two new dishwashers when they switched to reusables, knowing that people would be more receptive to the change with the dishwashers. Since they picked Energy Star-certified, high efficiency dishwashers, they weren’t using too much water or energy, and they would significantly reduce their waste stream.
If it’s not something that you can reuse, you can also donate it so that someone else can use it.
A common example of this would be packaging peanuts or bubble wrap. If you are receiving these with your orders, rather than throwing them out, find out if another business can use them. A business that is shipping out items for clients could probably put those to use.
Step 3: Recycle All That You Can
If you can’t reduce or reuse an item, then the last option is to recycle it. Most commonly recycled items such as paper, glass, and plastics are really easy to recycle through your hauling service.
To make your office recycling effective, though, you’ll need to make sure that you’re providing enough proper bins and signage so that your employees can easily recycle items and provide ongoing training to your employees.
Even here in the Bay Area, it can still be a challenge to get people to properly sort items, so the signage and training are important. This is a great area for your green team to work on, since it can actively engage employees.
Note that recycling also includes recycling food waste, or composting, so you should also have that service set up as well.
Beyond recycling the standard items, you might have some items that are a bit harder to recycle. In those cases, you might need to do more research to find out who can recycle those items for you.
Next StepsConduct a waste audit to see what is in your waste stream.
Depending upon your business, this can be as simple as taking a look into your garbage dumpster to see what’s there. Or, you might contact your hauler to see if they can help you with this.
Ever since the release of Rachel Carson’s 1962 book “Silent Spring,” the idea of sustainability has always at least been in the periphery of many companies. Things progressed in the 1970s, as pressure for environmental protection was turned up by NGOs such as GreenPeace (1971), Friends of the Earth (1971), and the earlier-formed WWF (1961). In the 1980s and 1990s, catastrophic events such as the Exxon-Valdez oil spill and the Chernobyl Nuclear Disaster caused the call for global responsibility to become more compelling. Recently, with many governments and multilateral organizations pushing for sustainable development, many companies have adapted to the relatively-new emphasis on environmental through a multitude of devices.
There’s good reason for jumping on the sustainability bandwagon too. The business & Sustainable Development Commission recently revealed statistics on the value of sustainable business models and how it could “open economic opportunities worth up to US$12 trillion and increase employment by up to 380 million jobs by 2030.” With many nonrenewable resources running out and governments across the world giving subsidies to eco-friendly businesses, many firms have heeded the call for environmental protection.
However, even though many companies are acting to protect the environment, there are some whose massive-scale efforts and innovative ideas serve as an inspiration to others. Here are ten companies that are making a difference for a greener and more sustainable planet.
What They’re Doing: The number one company on the fortune 500 list, Walmart is also doing its part for the environment. Walmart has set some pretty ambitious goals for itself when it comes to sustainability. Walmart’s website states that its sustainability goals consist of “creating zero waste, operate with 100% renewable energy and sell products that sustain our resources and the environment.” While ambitious, Walmart has already made significant strides towards these objectives, boasting statistics such as “78 percent of global waste diverted from landfill” in 2017 and investing $25 million over five years on food safety projects in China (Walmart, 2018).
Project Gigaton– avoid one billion metric tons (a gigaton) of greenhouse gases from the global value chain by 2030.
How it works: suppliers can take their sustainability efforts to the next level through goal-setting, and get credit from Walmart for the progress they make (Walmart, 2018).
What They’re Doing: With a motto like “Don’t be evil,” it’s no surprise that Google, one of the centerpieces of silicon valley, has already progressed in making their company more sustainable. Since starting their sustainability efforts, Google has touted some impressive numbers surrounding sustainability. Some of their remarkable accomplishments include Google data centers using 50% less energy than the average data center, diverting 91% of waste from their global data center operations away from landfills, and empowering their suppliers to use renewable resources. (Google, 2018).
Global Fishing Watch – “provides a transparent view of commercial fishing activities across the globe, in hopes of protecting critical marine habitats and providing new tools for sustainable fisheries management for the long term.”
How it Works: offers near real-time tracking of fishing activity through their public map, enables scientific research, and improving fishing management (Global Fishing Watch, 2018).
What They’re Doing: With an image of a bird feeding her offspring as their logo, it’s perhaps not much of a surprise to uncover that this food and beverage company has worked hard to protect nature. Nestle boasts an impressive eco-friendly resume, with actions like systematically reducing the weight of their packaging since 1991 (with a reduction of over 500 million kg to date), and utilizing a team of over a thousand agronomists to provide training to their farmers to minimize their environmental impact. (Nestle, 2018)
Water Stewardship – “aims to be responsible stewards of water, ensuring it is available and managed sustainably, protecting it through high-profile collaborations, treating the water we use as effectively as possible, supporting our supply chain in the use of water, educating communities on how to use water efficiently, and improving access to water and sanitation”
How it Works: Reducing water consumption, protecting and preserving water resources through research with NGOs like the WWF, and Zero Water technology (Recycled water). (Nestle, 2018)
7. Cisco Systems
What They’re Doing: Cisco systems, a hardware producer out of San Francisco and one of the key firms in Silicon Valley, has also stepped up to the plate to work for a greener planet. The company has implemented some inspiring environmental-protection measures as well, including having sustainable energy accounted for 80% of their worldwide electricity use.
Rhino Conservation – Cisco and Dimension Data partnered to track poachers at a game reserve in South Africa, successfully reducing rhino poaching in southern Africa by 96%.
How it Works: Cisco develops seismic sensors, drone cameras, thermal imaging, and biometric scanning technology to be used in anti-poaching efforts.
What They’re Doing: Perhaps one of the more well-known brands on this list, Apple has always set itself from the pack through innovation and creativity. Apple has carried these sentiments into its efforts in sustainability, achieving a fall in total transportation emissions fell by 3 percent in the fiscal year 2017 while their corporate employee headcount grew by 9 percent. In April 2018, Apple had 23 partners committed to 100 percent renewable energy for Apple production and to lower emissions by focusing on aluminum production, which “reduced emissions associated with every gram of aluminum in iPhone by 83 percent” (Apple, 2018).
Closed-Loop Supply Chain – This project will see Apple products made using recycled or renewable materials only and will return an equivalent amount of material back to the market to be used by Apple or other entities.
How it Works: Encouraging customers to return their iPhones during upgrades, recycled materials from outside recycling sources, and disassembly sections in factories.
A slogan like “You meet the nicest people on a Honda” seems to be a bit of a stretch, but it hasn’t stopped Honda from working tirelessly for a brighter and healthier future for the planet. Honda has taken sustainability measures such as aiming to reduce the CO2 emissions intensity of motorcycles, automobiles and power products by 30% compared with 2000 levels by 2020. Honda also has bragging rights as it became the world’s first mobility company to disclose estimates of all GHG emissions from its entire value chain in August of 2012 (Honda, 2018).
Triple Zero – Three goals relating to the number zero: Zeroing CO2 emissions using renewable energy, Zeroing energy risks, and Zeroing resource and disposal risks.
How it Works: Management of resources and working with disposal partners to ensure safe and effective transfer of waste materials, working with renewable energy companies to integrate technology into automobiles, and encouraging customers to pursue environmentally-friendly lifestyles (Honda, 2018).
When a company is known more for its sustainability efforts than the actual product it sells, then it’s clear that the company is serious about environmental protection. The company dropped jaws back in the nineties when it announced that it would eliminate any negative impact its company has on the environment by 2020. So far the company has done well in keeping its word, they’ve replaced latex in their precoat with recycled PVB, recycle used fishing nets for materials, and their factories all use 95% green energy, allowing them to run more efficiently (Interface, 2018).
Mission Zero – Eliminates any negative environmental impact the company has by 2020. So far they have reduced their carbon footprint per square metre of produced carpet by 98%, water usage by 93%, and factories use 95% renewable energy and send zero waste to landfill across Europe.
How it Works: Radically redesigned the company their products and the way they do business.
Known for their DIY and oftentimes less-expensive furniture, IKEA is now aiming to get recognition for its environmental sustainability efforts. Ikea has introduced new products to aid people in cutting their energy and water use, such as a tap nozzle that reduces water usage by 90 percent, and air-cleaning textiles. The company has also introduced new and more sustainable materials into their production process, with 100% cotton 77% wood in IKEA products coming from sustainable sources, citing that it will ultimately help lower costs while also doing the right thing.
IKEA Group Sustainability Strategy for 2020 – Will see 91% of waste from their stores recycled or incinerated for energy recovery, increase in the use of sustainable materials in production, and selling LED light bulbs to save energy (so far they have sold 85 million).
How it works: Marketing campaigns encouraging the buying of LED bulbs, working with sustainable suppliers for materials, tracking the production of products to identify wastes of energy and materials. (IKEA, 2017)
Unilever has a lot of products under its control, including Dove, Lipton, Axe, Popsicle (yes, it’s a brand), and Marmite. With great power comes great responsibility and Unilever has famously demonstrated itself as responsible. Unilever has set three main goals for its sustainability efforts which are to help more than a billion people take action to improve their health and well-being by 2020, halve the environmental footprint of the making and use of their products as they grow their business by 2030, and enhancing the livelihoods of millions by promoting fairness in the workplace, opportunities for women and inclusive business by 2020.
Unilever Sustainable Living Plan – Aims to create sustainable growth through brands with purpose, cutting business costs, reducing risks and building trust with consumers
How it Works: Unilever will follow the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Since the company is so gigantic and covers so many different products, the actions it is taking to be more sustainable range from the extraction of raw materials to manufacturing chemicals, causing the comprehensive UN Sustainable Development Goals to serve as a reliable tool for the company’s entire supply chain (Unilever, 2018).
Dubbing itself as an “Activist company,” Patagonia has put environmental protection as the company’s main priority. Patagonia has already claimed recognition as one of the largest funders of environmentalist causes. The company gives 1% of its sales (not its profit, its revenue), to environmental grants and organizations, funding everything from local nature perseveres to massive NGOs like the WWF. The company has donated 89 million dollars to environmental causes since 1985 in addition to giving 954 grants in 2017 alone. The company also encourages the buying and selling of worn wear, encouraging its customers to send back in their used gear so it can be repaired and sold again. The site also offers tips and guides on how to repair your own clothing, encouraging their customers to reduce clothing waste and learn a new skill.
Tin Shed Venture – Patagonia’s corporate venture capital fund partners with businesses focused on building renewable energy infrastructure, practicing regenerative organic agriculture, conserving water, diverting waste, and creating sustainable materials
How it works: Funds small businesses that apply for funding. The businesses must be working for a better environment and prove how they are doing so in their application. A full list of companies can be viewed here.
SummaryThe UN has set their Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs 2015) and there are a range of different elements from health to equality to environment that need addressing. Consumerism has been rampant for the past 30 years spurred on by the rise of technology (the likes of Amazon etc) and low cost products from the East. The consumer is now evolving and a Brand’s stance or position on sustainability and the broader horizon will become increasingly important as part of capturing a sale.
The above projects and the companies that founded them are part of the inspiration for us at ET2C to engage with the Sustainability discussion and to start the implementation of our own ideas within our business and across our supply chain in 2019. With operations in China, Vietnam and India, we have an opportunity to make an impact, however small, in emerging economies as well as through collaborating with our clients in their own respective markets. #dogood, #sustainability taskforce.
For queries related to Sustainability, why not email us at firstname.lastname@example.org .
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