Coca-Cola Enterprises (CCE) has joined the increasing number of corporations committing to minimizing their environmental impact. The soft drink giant has, “pledged to reduce its carbon footprint by 15 percent by the year 2020. ” The move will, CCE expects, allow it to improve its corporate responsibility and sustainability (CRS) while lowering its net emissions to 5.2 metric tons.
“The Commitment 2020” outlines strategies the company will adopt to improve five CRS focus areas. It will improve its: energy consumption and climate change impact (as mentioned, by trimming its carbon footprint by 15 percent); water usage (by establishing water-sustainable operations [i.e. using less water, neutralizing impact on local communities]); packaging-related damage (by reducing the impact of its packaging [i.e. maximizing use of renewable, reusable, and recyclable materials, with the goal of recovering the equivalent of 100 percent of its packaging]); product quality (by providing beverages for a range of lifestyles [and increasing consumers’ ability to make informed beverage selections]); and cultural inclusivity (by creating a culture that values diversity).
The “Commitment 2020” is not CCE’s first CSR-improving attempt. Its 2008 CSR report highlights achievements in that calendar year. For example, the company reduced its energy usage by 7 percent between 2006 and 2008 and its water use ratio by .09 water-liters-per-product-liter in the last three years (thereby saving 301 million liters). CCE also used 125,000 metric tons of recycled or reused packaging and added 120 delivery trucks to its hybrid electric fleet, for an anticipated total of 328 such vehicles by the end of 2009. Finally, CCE created the first certified carbon footprint for several products: Dasani in the U.S. and Coca-Cola, Diet Coke, Oasis, and Coke Zero in Great Britain.