McDonald's Corp. released its 2012 Best of Green Report this week, a collection of its 90 best practices that focus on the environment and provide an impact for the company's business.
The report illustrates progress in eight categories – energy, packaging, anti-littering, recycling, logistics, communications, green building and greening the workplace. Of these 90 case studies, nine "Planet Champion" winners for each category were selected by internal and external experts as the best.
The selection committee includes representatives from BSR, Ceres, Conservation International and World Wildlife Fund.
The 2012 McDonald's "Planet Champions" are:
- Energy: McDonald's Europe's innovative carbon footprint measurement "toolkit" sets the stage for identifying future carbon reduction opportunities;
- Packaging: McDonald's Canada's switch to unbleached napkins and bags leads to positive environmental, customer and cost savings impacts;
- Anti-Littering: McDonald's Australia works to establish a leadership position by engaging its restaurant employees, staff and customers to control the impacts of litter around restaurants;
- Recycling & Waste Reduction: McDonald's Austria achieves a 95 percent recycling rate in its restaurants with the McRecycle program;· Logistics made from vegetable oil recycled from McDonald's restaurants;
- Communications: For McDonald's restaurant employees in Spain, environmental training is a core element of orientation and training;
- Greening the Restaurants: McDonald's USA plans to build 25 additional LEED-certified restaurants by 2015 through its participation in the LEED Volume Program;
- Greening the Restaurants: The first green restaurant in Pilar, Argentina, built by Arcos Dorados, McDonald's development licensee in Latin America, becomes the first new building in the country to receive LEED Gold for New Construction certification; and
- Greening the Workplace: McDonald's Japan helps nearly 5,500 of its crew members achieve a 15 percent reduction in their power usage from July through September 2011.
"I'm proud of the progress in all these areas and I'm especially excited to see the number of impactful advancements in energy/carbon reduction and green building – two of our key planet priorities," said Bob Langert, McDonald's vice president of Sustainability.
The 2012 Best of Green also includes more than 20 energy-efficiency initiatives, such as carbon-reduction practices, and green building advancements in more than a dozen markets around the world.
In the U.S., for example, McDonald's USA has made a national commitment to match 30 percent of its electricity use at company-owned restaurants in 2012 with renewable energy credits from U.S. wind sources. Renewable energy credits help fund the development of new renewable energy resources to increase the amount of available clean energy for everyone.
Other report highlights include:
- A maintenance technician at a McDonald's restaurant in Brazil suggested re-using condensation generated by the air conditioning unit. The resulting collection, storage and re-use system provided water for plants and cleaning external areas, and reduced daily water consumption 15 percent.
- Restaurant crew at McDonald's restaurants in the U.K. created new environmental best practices, leading to key changes including a 20 percent increase in cardboard recycling.
- McDonald's focus on sustainable meetings is illustrated by actions at the 2011 gathering of 16,000 U.S. Owner-Operators, restaurant managers, staff and suppliers. More than half the waste stream was diverted and 1.35 tons of waste kept out of the landfill through soap/amenity recycling. Additional recycling initiatives kept more than 85 tons out of the landfill.
More information about the Best of Green report is available online.
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