This personal care products company uses natural ingredients and has been a pioneer in sourcing harvested palm oil and introducing the ingredient into the beauty industry. In 2008, the brand introduced 100 percent recycled bottles. And the company has committed to becoming carbon neutral by next year.
MARKS & SPENCER
In 2007, this U.K.-based department store chain implemented a five-year “eco plan” outlining green initiatives. At the center of the plan is the goal to become carbon neutral by 2012. “We are significantly reducing the amount of packaging and carrier bags that we use, and looking for new ways to recycle,” the company said.
Last month, the supermarket chain won the U.K.’s Business Commitment to the Environment’s Environmental Leadership Award 2009 for being the first European retailer to roll out two-sided receipt printers, which print on both sides of the paper simultaneously. This effort has the potential to reduce receipt paper usage by as much as 45 percent and consume less power.
Supermarket chain Waitrose has been working to help its vendors boost their green credentials since 2005 as part of the government-funded Envirowise program, which is designed to encourage food and drink companies and their suppliers to work together to reduce waste and save money. In January, the chain launched an advertising campaign to encourage customers to bicycle to its stores.
Tesco, the U.K.’s biggest retailer, pledged in 2007 to cut the emissions produced by its markets and distribution centers at least 50 percent by 2020 and to reduce the amount of carbon dioxide used in its distribution network. Chief executive officer Sir Terry Leahy promised “a revolution in green consumption,” and said he wanted to bring the green movement into the mass market.
Based in Frankfurt, e.on is one of the world’s leading power and gas companies. E.on has created “Energy 2030,” an initiative that aims to triple the share of renewable energy in power generation to 24 percent by 2030. In addition, the company is building power plants for fossil fuel and wind power plants.
The mission of EDF Energy, one of the U.K.’s largest energy companies, is to develop sustainable energy solutions. The company utilizes a number of different electricity-generating methods — traditional and renewable. The company also uses coal and gas to produce electricity in the U.K. “We know that millions depend on us to provide reliable, affordable energy,” the company said.
The search engine giant has a blog dedicated to various environmental issues, including the implementation of its own green initiatives, such as its commitment to become carbon neutral. In 2005, Google began converting its own headquarters (left) to run partly on solar power. The sun eventually could deliver as much as 30 percent of the power at Google’s 1 million-square-foot campus in Mountain View, Calif.