Poultry Sustainability Guide holds the keys to sustainability on the farm and in production

We eat a lot of chicken. I see this just from my own family’s consumption of barbecue chicken at our July 4th cookout last week; but consumption trends also show that demand for chicken is steadily increasing among Americans.

Eating chicken instead of other meats is perceived to be the more eco-friendly choice – as poultry has a smaller environmental footprint overall. However, poultry processing is actually very energy-intensive.

Read more

Rhetoric to reality: What to watch after oil executives’ Vatican visit

Earlier this month, more than 30 oil and gas CEOs and investors captured headlines by meeting with Pope Francis in the Vatican on climate change, then releasing a statement supporting carbon pricing. What is clear from this high-profile event is that the climate crisis has become a societal imperative, an investor priority, and a top tier business risk for the oil and gas industry.

Read more

What is your company doing on the “coolest” day of the year? 

The historic heat waves forecasted for Europe this week are a stark reminder that we are in a race against the clock to protect the most vulnerable populations from the impacts of climate change which will continue to grow in number and severity. 

Today, around 1.1 billion people lack access to cooling, which not only makes them vulnerable to heat waves but also contributes to food insecurity. Roughly 30% of food worldwide is wasted because of lack of refrigeration. As the global population continues to grow and climate change impacts food production we simply can’t afford to waste this much agricultural output. 

This is why we are joining the Institute of Refrigeration, the UN Environmental Programme and organizations around the world in celebrating the first World Refrigeration Day

Read more

Best Buy’s new Science-Based Target helps customers reduce energy use in their homes

In a world where big-box retailers are falling to online giants, Best Buy has managed to thrive.

Earlier this week, Best Buy announced a Science-Based Target (SBT) to help consumers reduce their carbon emissions by 20 percent and save $5 billion on utility costs. In its own operations, Best Buy will reduce carbon emissions by 75 percent.

To date, 567 companies have set or committed to set SBTs. But what makes Best Buy’s story unique is its strategy to make customers part of the equation: Reduce the company’s total carbon footprint by selling more energy efficient products to customers.

Here’s how this goal was set

Read more

Can the circular economy end the era of “Throwaway Living”?

In 1955, LIFE magazine ran an ad promoting “Throwaway Living,” encouraging the use of disposable items as a way to help cut down on household chores.

We used to depend on plastic, and now, our planet is being suffocated by it. Environmental impacts are showing the need for a more circular economy, and businesses are responding by offering innovation solutions, such as new products, packaging and business models, to address resource scarcity and climate risk – not to mention unlock a $4.5 trillion economic opportunity.

I recently caught up with Brendan Edgerton, the Director of Circular Economy at the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), and EDF Climate Corps alum, about the progress being made toward circular models of design and production – and his love of Swiss chocolate.

Circularity refers to shifting from current linear methods of production and consumption, where products are designed without consideration for what happens after use, to adopting circular models that keep products, components and materials within the economy.

Read more

How companies can start clean when it comes to food packaging

This is the third in a series evaluating the challenges in single-use food packaging waste. We looked at how company commitments fit into the circular economy debate, made a list of food packaging chemicals, and designed step-by-step guidance with a new interactive tool for companies to act on ingredient safety. 

Packaging, especially single-use plastic, has been in the news a lot lately. Images of a straw in a turtle’s nose. Stalled community recycling programs following China’s decision to severely limit what waste materials they’ll accept. Hundreds of companies committing to change their plastic packaging practices. And let’s not forget about chemicals associated with packaging. In our previous blog, we noted that tight virgin-material standards can prevent problematic contamination in post-consumer recycled materials. We also shared a list of ten toxic chemicals and chemical classes including PFAS, phthalates, and perchlorate that can migrate into food from food packaging and food handling equipment.

Read more

Meet the young minds solving the climate crisis

As a Cruise Director for an expedition travel company in the Arctic and Antarctic, Meghan Kelly often found herself in conversations with locals about the receding coastline. She heard how decreasing sea ice is diminishing traditional hunting grounds, along with the passages between one community and the next in the Arctic. For the families who have been there for generations, surviving means adapting to a warmer climate.

To many of us, these remote locations may seem far away. But stories like this are happening much closer to home. Climate change is altering, and in some cases destroying, the environments we grew up in.

It’s easy to feel hopeless when hearing these stories. But here’s one reason why I’m optimistic about the future of our planet.

Read more

For Danone, Business And Environmental Goals Are One And The Same

Credit: Danone North America

You may not be thinking about the environment when you’re opening your yogurt container or adding almond milk to your morning coffee. But for Danone North America, the company behind these and dozens of other dairy and specialty food products, sustainability is top of mind. “At Danone, we believe that each time we eat and drink, we can vote for the world we want,” the company’s website notes.

Just today, Danone North America announced that its Bridgeton, New Jersey facility achieved one of its zero waste goals, keeping more than 40 tons of waste out of the landfill this year alone.

Read more

India’s largest wine producer is helping its customers sip more sustainably

Last year, global wine production rose to near-record highs, reaching a harvest of 292.3 million hectoliters – that’s more than 7.7 billion gallons. In the U.S. alone, domestic and imported wine sales reached $70.5 billion. The world clearly loves wine.

But, few industries feel the perils of climate change more directly than the wine industry. And with temperatures expected to only become more extreme, wineries are being forced to consider the long-term risk a changing climate will have on their business.

I had a chance to chat with Inesh Singh, the first-ever Chief Sustainability Officer of Sula Vineyards, India’s largest wine producer. For Inesh, sustainability isn’t just an opportunity to save the company money, it’s a key part of its long-term survival. Inesh is GreenBiz’s 30 Under 30 honoree, and was an EDF Climate Corps fellow with PepsiCo back in 2016.

Here’s an edited version of our conversation.

Read more

The vanguard of corporate climate action has arrived — and the Trump administration can’t stop it

After a decade-long dry spell, Corporate America’s call for climate action is back.

Despite the Trump Administration’s continued denial, leading companies are finally giving climate change the attention it deserves and urging Congress to do the same.

Years from now, we’ll look back at May 2019 as a breakthrough moment, when business engagement in climate policy gathered strength and became an unstoppable movement.  This month alone, companies across sectors including oil and gas, electric power, consumer goods and food have joined the CEO Climate Dialogue, invested in the Americans for Carbon Dividends initiative, and advocated on the Hill to put a price on carbon.

As Axios’ Amy Harder notes, “Several years-long trends are driving corporations to ask for government policy — but it’s not really about saving the planet. It’s about investor and legal pressure, falling prices for renewable energy, new bounties of cleaner-burning natural gas and growing public concern about a warming planet’s impacts.”

Whatever the reasons companies are stepping up to the plate on climate policy advocacy, pressure from investors is one trend that is here to stay.

Read more