Green Commitments by Leading Consumer Companies

  • Date: December 16, 2010
  • Source: Admin
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Procter and Gamble is a global company providing consumer products in the areas of pharmaceuticals, cleaning supplies, personal care, and pet supplies whereas Coca-Cola is the global leader in the beverage industry offering hundreds of brands, including soft drinks, fruit juices, and sports drinks. Both these companies are now in a zest to show the world their commitments towards a better, cleaner and greener earth!

A step to protect world environment: P&G inaugurates its first North American zero-waste plant

Procter & Gamble (P&G) moved towards becoming a zero-waste company by inaugurating its first zero-waste-to-landfill manufacturing plant in North America. P&G claimed that its facility, based in Auburn, Maine, would reuse all of its waste. 60 percent or more of it would be recycled and the rest used to create energy.

The company has already achieved this goal in eight manufacturing facilities in regions including Bel-gium, UK, Hungary and Italy.  P&G's zero-waste facilities cover fabric and home care, beauty and grooming, and feminine care. The Maine facility deals in feminine care products.  It has outsourced incineration of non-recyclable materials leading to electricity generation.  It is sold to the local power company. All recyclable material are sorted and recycled safely.

P&G and Its Environment Friendly Goals:


  • Intends extending its zero-waste-to-landfill program globally.
  • Targets less than 0.5% of disposed manufacturing waste within 10 years
  • Will use 100% renewable or recycled materials or products and power its plants with 100% re-newable energy.
  • Will additionally take up composting for waste disposal at several facilities.
Like its arch rival Unilever, Procter & Gamble wants to establish itself as a leading green company. The two have been pursuing ambitious environmental targets. Only last month, Unilever said it would target reduction of its environmental impact by 50% by 2020.

On the other hand, the progress towards a zero-waste policy at the UN's COP16 talks in Cancun this month has been nil and drawn the ire of the environmental groups which welcomed the P&G initiative.  

It prompted Brian Kilgore, managing director of Lifetime Recycling Village to remark, "We only need to look at the growing problem of waste management in many of the world's most developed countries to see that this is an urgent issue that we need to face up to."

Coke’s green commitment:

"The Power of One" is a series of stories by Marc Gunther about inspiring individuals who, with their ideas and conviction have proved to be assets to their employers and the community. This story is about one such individual, Bryan Jacob, a manager at Coca-Cola. At 21, Bryan made the cover of Weightlifting USA and represented US in the Barcelona and Atlanta Olympics.

Bryan joined Coke in 1993 three years before the Olympics arrived in Atlanta. Coke had set aside a budget to hire Olympic athletes.  Coke, influenced by the Montreal Protocol, was switching from ozone-depleting chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) to hydro fluorocarbons (HFCs) which would not damage the ozone layer. However, HFCs are potent greenhouse gases, thousands of times as potent as carbon dioxide. While they currently have a relatively small aggregate impact on global warming, by 2050 they will represent 9%-19% of projected greenhouse gas emissions according to some estimates. Therefore, developing cost-effective alternatives to HFCs and persuading the bottlers to adopt them emerged as a challenge.

Byran leads Coke's global effort to reduce the greenhouse gases emitted by its 10 million vending ma-chines and coolers and Greenpeace, WWF, the World Resources Institute and the Chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change have joined in. He is also exploring more energy-efficient, low-carbon distribution options for Coke and its bottling partners. Since 2008, Coca-Cola has rolled out another 220,000 units of HFC-free equipment, according to Byran, currently the energy and climate protection manager.  

The company and its bottling partners have been replacing coolers that use HFCs with natural refrige-rants like CO2, propane or isobutane.  All of Coke’s new vending machines and coolers could be HFC-free by 2015. Bryan hopes that Coke will be rewarded for what it does achieve, rather than criticized for what it does not.


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