Amidst the stories of environmental pessimism and pessimism, it is heartening to hear that some of the largest companies on the planet are implementing ways to reduce their carbon footprint. In the past, some of these companies have been the biggest polluters and producers of waste, so it is encouraging that a shift in consumer awareness has led to a rethinking of the corporate structure from an environmental perspective.
Where environmentalism was once a side note (maybe even a joke), it has now become high on the agenda of many corporate notepads. Each of us makes daily decisions that include how we interact with products and the effect they have on the environment. The power of choice is that individuals vote for the kind of future they hope to see (and big companies are beginning to see the light).
Some of the most popular companies are determined to set an example and show people that being respectful of the environment is not just a necessity, but also a reward. We have put together some of these stories for you to enjoy.
Panasonic creates energy efficient headquarters
For Panasonic, the idea of sustainability has been an important part of their business for some time. This Japanese giant has been supplying the world with electronics for decades and saw the writing on the wall when it came to its environmental policy.
When Panasonic decided to create a new location in Newark in 2013, the company tried a different approach to the way they design and build new facilities. Panasonic’s new tower in Newark is LEED certified, meaning it meets international standards in buildings designed to save energy, water efficiency, reduce CO2 emissions, and improve indoor environmental quality. . In addition to this, the tower is in close proximity to one of the most widely used transit nodes in the area, allowing employees a convenient way to get to work instead of driving. This decision by Panasonic is estimated to keep 500 cars off public roads every day.
While Apple is a company known for bringing innovative technology to market, they are less known as a green energy company. Its priorities are beginning to change and the company has increased its efforts to make the company more environmentally friendly.
For example, the company will launch a mobile phone model that is made entirely from recycled parts. A notable phrase from their website is’ Get less out of the ground. And more of old devices. ‘ Their goal is to manufacture products using only renewable resources or recycled material. One challenge they face is actually taking old products apart and recovering the many small parts they contain. The solution? Daisy the recycling robot is a new disassembly robot being tested by Apple that can disassemble 200 iPhones per hour and recover material from each one for use in a new product.
Walmart goes organic
Ten years ago, the CEO of Walmart at the time proclaimed that the company was on the road to sustainability. He spoke of the company using only renewable energy, eliminating waste and selling more organic products. A decade later, the company sat down to review its progress. Fortunately, in some cases they were further away than they thought.
For example, a goal for the business was to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20 million metric tons by 2010. They exceeded it and reached a total of 28.2 million metric tons, which is equivalent to withdrawing 5.9 million of cars off the road for a year. The use of fertilizers on farms that grow Walmart products was one of the sectors where they had the greatest impact on emissions and was due in large part to working with their suppliers.
In the past decade, the company has also contributed to preserving more than one million acres of wildlife habitat.
Ikea knows the value of clean energy
In 2015, Ikea announced a plan that was to improve the sustainability of the company, not only by investing in renewable energy, but also by using it for the company’s offices and stores. Currently, IKEA stores carry 342,000 solar panels to contribute to their energy use.
The furniture conglomerate is also committed to selling only LED bulbs in an initiative to promote green energy to its customers, who believe they will ultimately reap the rewards through energy savings. This is part of a strategy to “offer products and solutions that help customers save money by using less energy and water and reducing waste.”
Among other things, IKEA currently sources half of its wood supply from FSC-certified forests, promotes clean water projects, and sources sustainable, chemical-free cotton purchased from certified farmers.