A Few Ways Companies Contribute to Environmental Progress
Many companies that make products contribute to environmental issues by making sustainable, safe products, reducing pollution, cleaning up waste safely, utilizing solar power, recycling, reducing the use of water, and using renewable energy sources. Despite the news about companies creating pollution through chemicals in the air and water, medical waste, and other sources, many companies contribute to a safe work environment for employees and the environment.
Companies Use Sustainable Materials to Make Products
Many companies receive certification for the products they make. They use sustainable materials that are considered eco-friendly for their customers. This contributes to the health of the entire planet. The Patagonia Clothing company makes sustainable clothing made from recycled materials and they grow cotton organically. They contribute to environmental issues such as evaluating the soil to improve how plants are grown.
Seventh Generation is a company that makes personal care and cleaning products from natural products and their packaging can be recycled at most supermarkets. Many food companies that make food or beverages source the food from organic growers and those that use sustainable or regenerative agricultural practices. This improves the health of customers.
Companies Reduce Waste in Manufacturing
Many companies are reducing the waste from making products by using eco-friendly methods. Uniliver is trying to reduce waste from products that they make. To reduce waste in making ice cream, they remelt leftover ice cream and put it through the process again. Their ice cream packaging is recyclable for the German Crissimo brand. Another product they make, which is a spread, is taken to a company to be used to produce biogas that can be used to power boilers that run the plant on steam energy.
When they have an excessive amount of food products left-over, they sell them at lower prices to restaurants and food companies. This reduces waste and improves the overall health of the company. Mars, Inc uses leftover sweeteners as an energy source for manufacturing and makes its plastic packaging recyclable. Procter and Gamble convert plastic pellets from diapers into pellets to make brooms and buckets and uses scraps from toilet paper and wipes for material for low-cost roofing.
Companies Use Alternative Energy Sources and Materials
Many manufacturing companies waste energy and one method they use is offshore drilling. This type of drilling affects the environment in many negative ways, polluting the waters, and harming the fish and wildlife in the ocean. In the US, over 565 million barrels are extracted annually using offshore drilling.
Some companies produce energy on-site by installing solar panels and using energy from the wind to run machinery that makes products. A company like Pela turns their phone cases into compost that can be used in gardens.
IKEA, a Swedish retailer, generates power using wind turbines. It has more wind turbines than stores. Many companies are using wind, solar and biomass energy as backup or part of their daily operations.
Companies Clean Up Waste and Make Their Work Environment Safer
Medical waste is a problem in the industry. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the problem grew in the 1980s when medical waste washed up on beaches along the East Coast. Many companies hire a medical waste cleanup company to help them dispose of it properly. They bring it to a facility, sterilize it, in some cases incinerate it, steam it, or microwave it, and dispose of it in compliance with the federal government.
Companies are designing safer buildings for workers by installing safe floors and stairways for workers. Slips and trips have led to about 15% of general industry injuries and accidental deaths. Materials that do not give off chemical emissions or make floors slippery are an excellent choice. They use safe recycled materials for desks, chairs, and other equipment.
Manufacturing companies can help improve the environment by starting in their company. Start a recycling program, find ways to use waste to make other products, invest in alternative energy, and use safe materials to create new products. All these can improve the health of employees and customers.