Americans throw away 200 million tons of garbage annually, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. However, recycling programs have encouraged U.S. citizens to do their part to reduce waste. In fact, in 2009, there were more than 9,000 recycling programs in the United States. In the same year, U.S. citizens recycled 82 tons of materials, an emissions reduction equal to taking 33 million passenger cars off the road, reports Keep America Beautiful.
In addition to people taking small steps at home, big brands are trying to be more eco-friendly, too. There are a handful of companies leading the way. Here are just four examples:
Procter & Gamble
Procter & Gamble, the company that brings you Tide laundry soap and Gillette razors, has a green side. P&G aims to power all of its manufacturing plants with 100 percent renewable energy by the year 2020. Additionally, P&G is working toward making all packaging from recycled or renewable resources by 2020. Today, Procter & Gamble has achieved zero waste to landfill status for 45 of its factories. Employees of P&G are even held to the standard of zero waste in their offices. The company has a long list of sustainability goals that can be viewed on the P&G website.
Continental Tire’s manufacturing plant in Sumter, South Carolina, has recycled or converted into energy 1.5 million pounds of waste. The plant earned a zero-landfill status in its first year of operation. Waste, including steel, wood, glass, rubber, paper and plastic, is all recycled in a partnership with HWI Environmental Technologies. Additionally, Continental Tire’s Mt. Vernon plant, located in Illinois, was the first tire manufacturing facility in the world to obtain a zero-landfill status. Continental tires are also constructed to reduce CO2 emissions. When you purchase Continental Tires, you’re making a smart, sustainable choice.
Tea can be sustainable, too. Through composting, recycling and a range of other sustainable efforts, Bigelow Tea diverts 94 percent of its manufacturing waste at all three of its facilities, exceeding the zero-landfill status guideline of 90 percent. The tea company even has a creative name for its sustainability initiative, calling it a SustainabiliTea program. In addition to its eco-friendly practices here in the U.S., Bigelow Tea works with suppliers in China, India and Sri Lanka that have been following sustainable farming practices for more than 30 years.
Subaru’s reputation as an eco-friendly company has captured the attention of green-minded drivers. In 2002, Subaru began working toward its goal of achieving a zero-landfill status. Just 18 months later, in 2003, the car company became the first American automotive manufacturer to gain a zero-landfill status. Since then, Subaru has maintained its status and set forth to achieve new, sustainability goals, such as its partnership with the National Park Service. The vehicle manufacturer is known for its sustainable selection of vehicles as well as for its cars that are both durable and efficient, which helps produce cleaner emissions. Subaru has also won a variety of accolades over the past decade, including the 2012 Sustainia award.
Content provided by SocialMonsters. Feature image courtesy of Albert Lynn.