Celebrating Eco-Progress: Clorox

If you are anything like me, when you think “Clorox” words like toxic, chemicals, disease, deformities, and death come to mind.

And yet, today’s Celebrating Eco-Progress installment gives a hearty hats-off and a job well done to Clorox for substantial efforts towards sustainability.

Via GreenBiz:

Sustainability was one of four mega-trends observed by the Clorox Co. in 2006 as potential business opportunities.

Consumers’ desire for greener products led the company to launch a new green cleaning brand, acquire Burt’s Bees, and reposition the Brita brand to include a sustainability focus.

“That’s what really drove our focus on sustainability. It was all about growth,” said Clorox CEO Don Krauss. “It was also about being on the right side of the angels.”…

Clorox set goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, energy consumption and water use each by 10 percent by 2013, relative to 2007 baselines. Clorox also plans to cut waste by 20 percent. The company is on track to meet the goals, Knauss said, and may even reach the targets a year ahead of schedule. All told, the efforts save the company about $25 million a year.

The company has also committed to green building and replaced its sales fleet with hybrids. Compensation is tied to sustainability performance through an Executive Scorecard. Even its philanthropy arm expanded its focus from K-12 education to improving families and childrens’ wellness.

It’s really worth the few additional minutes to read the whole short article, because it gets to the heart of the point I’ve been trying to make with Celebrating Progress; that the more we celebrate business efforts towards sustainability, the more we support them by buying their sustainable products, the more we motivate businesses to continue and expand their efforts.

As Don Krauss says:

Sustainability, he said, shouldn’t be a one-off effort and has the potential to grow the bottom line.

“You have to focus on sustainability as part of the overall strategy of the company,” Knauss said. “It can’t be a hobby.”

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