businesses going green

Melissa is a mother of 2, lives in Utah, and writes for a multitude of sites. She is currently the EIC of HarcourtHealth.com and writes about health, wellness, and business topics.

Global climate change is a pretty hot (literally) topic and U.S. companies are listening. All around the globe leaders are discussing solutions to a decades-old problem.

The steps to reduce greenhouse gases are being talked about, but is anyone listening? Yes, they are.

Businesses going green are putting money towards new technology to help our planet. Going green can improve a company’s bottom line, work culture, and public opinion of the brand.

Green companies are the future. If it weren’t for them making a difference, we may not have a future.

Starbucks

The Seattle-based coffee company plans to open 10,000 green stores by 2025. Its goal is to supplement all the North American stores’ energy supply with alternative power, such as wind and solar.

Starbucks has already hit the ground running with its promise to cut plastic straws around the globe by 2020. Greener stores are in the design phase and will be LEED-certified. The new shops will focus on water conservation and groundbreaking energy solutions.

The products will be more recyclable, compostable, and reusable.

Google

Google integrates sustainable practices in everything they do and build. The company is committed to designing and developing products to be more environmentally-friendly.

The search engine’s data centers already use 50 percent less energy than standard ones. A solar company is useful to Google and the planet; the company is sourcing its energy from solar panel parks from around the globe. In 2017, Google accomplished a milestone by reaching full renewable energy potential.

Their personal kitchen is also getting involved in going green. Google’s head chef buys food with natural flaws (ugly produce) that otherwise would end up in a landfill. Approximately 40% of food is wasted because it isn’t “pretty enough” to sell to restaurants and supermarkets.

Google’s food program produces fewer emissions and has saved more than 1 million pounds of food this year.

New Belgium Brewing

Breweries are contributors of greenhouse gases and New Belgium Brewing knows that. They’ve recognized that it’s not a fix that can happen overnight, but they’re doing something about it in their operations.

New Belgium Brewing produces 12 percent of their alternative energy on their premise. Talk about companies with green initiatives!

They’re also brainstorming innovative methods to reduce their dependence on natural resources. Here’s how:

  1. Energy Conservation. They’re investing in efficient and green equipment, harvesting waste energy, and developing sustainable packaging.
  2. Demand Management. New Belgium Brewing has installed Smart Grid Technology into their operations, alerting employees when electricity is at peak demand so non-essential power loads can be switched off to temporarily relieve resources.
  3. On-Site Power Generation. Different systems are deployed to produce green energy.
  4. Internal Energy Tax. The brewery has taxed themselves and puts that money towards green solution investments.

Honda

Honda has invested a lot of its company resources into its “Green Path” endeavor. They’ve also improved their fleet to include higher fuel-efficiency, hybrids, and zero-emissions cars.

Even with their fuel-efficient car models, the company aims to cut its CO2 emissions in half by the year 2020.

Honda is seeking ways to develop a hydrogen fuel cell powered engine.

Less waste production, smarter vehicle delivery, and greener stores are coming.

Wal-Mart

Wal-Mart is one of the largest businesses going green. Its supply chain is incorporating environmentally-friendly solutions.

Its policy is to cut ties with suppliers who aren’t adding green solutions in their strategy. The retail stores use 100 percent of renewable energy. Wal-Mart’s transportation sector deploys fuel-efficient trucks to deliver inventory.

It’s working hard to preserve the earth’s natural resources. Wal-Mart has saved 77 percent of waste from getting dumped in landfills. It provides nutrient-rich foods through fertilizer optimization programs.

Microsoft

Microsoft embodies green companies because of its program that gives old, outdated equipment a second chance at life. Approximately 200 million computers and laptops are thrown out each year.

Instead of this e-waste being dumped in landfills, the Microsoft Authorized Refurbished Program allows consumers to deposit their old technology, and certified refurbishers can make the necessary Window updates for cheap to resell.

LEGO

LEGO is highly recognized for its commitment to social responsibility.

The famous toy maker has incorporated environmentalism into its business strategy and aims to be completely turned over to an alternative energy source by the year 2030.

In addition to partnering with the World Wildlife Fund, LEGO continues to invest in sustainable alternatives for its packaging and materials. They’re dedicated to ethical business practice and human rights for their employees.

Stella McCartney

Fashion house Stella McCartney is not only blowing us away with their clothes but also their use of sustainable fabrics.

The brand is actively tracking its suppliers to make sure they’re sustainable in sourcing their textiles. Stella McCartney (the brand) is working with Clean by Design, a green supply chain program, to work with factories on lowering their carbon footprint.

This program has saved more than three million tons of water, 61 thousand tons of fossil fuel, and $15 million in production costs in 2014. See, green companies can make a huge difference!

The founder of the fashion label, Stella McCartney, is encouraging others in the fashion industry to eliminate the use of leather and fur in clothing, handbags, and accessories.

How Are Businesses Going Green?

It’s simple, really: Businesses going green start with a small goal and build from its success.

In the article, you can see how much impact these eight companies made in helping the planet. For more environmental topics, check out our green business news stories to stay up to date!