Procter & Gamble Cuts Scope 2 GHGs, but Scope 1 Rises

by | Oct 14, 2011

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Procter & Gamble’s scope 1 CO2 emissions rose from 2.8 million to 2.9 million metric tons in 2011, but scope 2 emissions fell from 1.4 to 1.3 million metric tons, and percentage of waste recycled rose from 63 to 69 percent, according to its 2011 sustainability report.

The company says its GHG focus has been on scope 1 emissions, and it has already achieved its goal of a 50 percent reduction in direct emissions for the period 2002-2012, with a 53 percent reduction on a product-adjusted basis. But it says hitting its goal of a 20 percent reduction for the period 2007-2012 will be challenging.

The report (pdf) says that since 2002, P&G has reduced its indirect CO2 emissions by 49 percent on a production-adjusted basis.

In 2011, it installed its first wind turbine, at a pet care plant in Coevorden, Netherlands. P&G says the turbine will supply about 17 percent of the plant’s energy needs, about 5,500 MWh a year.

P&G has committed to LEED-certify all new construction of manufacturing plants, distribution centers and office buildings. Its initial sites pursuing the certification include plants in Taicang, China and Box Elder, Utah, and its Singapore Innovation Center.

The company’s energy consumption rose in 2011 from 71.9 million to 74 million GJ, but the company has reduced energy use on a production-adjusted basis by 52 percent since 2002. It says its operations have made excellent progress towards a 2012 goal of a 20 percent energy footprint reduction.

In waste reduction, the company says results have been encouraging. Total waste disposed this year was 315,000 metric tons, down from 363,000 in 2010. Waste disposed per unit of production, including non-hazardous and hazardous solid waste, air emissions, and strength of effluent measured as chemical oxygen demand, has fallen 57 percent since 2007.

Waste innovations have included repurposing scrap dental floss as filling in pillows used to clean up industrial spills, recycling excess feminine pads into plastic soles for low-cost shoes, and combining haircare manufacturing waste with clay and coal ash to make bricks.

Water usage per unit declined 22 percent since 2007, and fell from 81 million cubic meters in 2010 to 80 million in 2011. The company says it puts special focus on large sites and those in water scarce areas.

In the past year P&G partnered with Be Green Packaging, a molded fiber supplier, to develop a lightweight, PVC-free package for the new Fusion ProGlide. The packaging was unveiled in April and launched in Western Europe with a 57% reduction in plastic compared to the originally launched Fusion outer pack and razor tray, and a 20% reduction in gross weight compared to the Fusion launch package.

To minimize plastic, the design uses fiber material made from bamboo, sugarcane, and bulrush. P&G says the product’s structure stays strong under compression, sealing and opening forces, as well as distribution and transportation stresses, while also maintaining a strong visual presence on the shelf.

P&G plans to begin introducing this package in North America in 2012.

This past winter the company also compacted its entire portfolio of U.S. and Canadian carton powder laundry detergents by 33 percent. The compacted powder formulas of Tide, Gain, Cheer, Dreft, and Ivory Snow use a higher proportion of dense active cleaning agents.

In 2011 P&G issued a revised supplier scorecard. As with the company’s first scorecard, it was designed to track and encourage improvements in energy, water, waste, GHG emissions and innovation. P&G says that according to year-one results, the scorecard was relevant across the wide range of industries its suppliers represent, and in that year 38 percent of suppliers submitted ideas for sustainability innovation.

Unlike the first year, when the scorecard was not mandatory to complete, the 2011 scorecard factors into a supplier’s rating and will affect its ability to do more business with P&G. Details on the tool can be found at

Last week Reckitt Benckiser, the company behind household brands such as Lysol and Woolite, released a sustainability report showing that it is three-quarters of the way towards its 2020 carbon reduction goal, only three years into the program.

And this week Clorox released its 2011 annual report, which, for the first time, combines the company’s financial, environmental, social and governance performance. Environmental Leader will review that report in more detail next week.

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