Trend: Dupont joins a small group of large companies announcing strategic initiatives that appear to be more than green-washing.
Joel Makower at Two Steps Forward describes DuPont's strategy of sustainability.
Dupont today announced that it is joining the growing ranks of old-line industrial companies embracing sustainability as a core business strategy. At an event in Washington, D.C., Dupont's chairman and CEO, Chad Holliday, set forth the company's "2015 Sustainability Goals," including its plans to derive $6 billion or more in new revenues from sustainability-minded products.
In his announcement, Holliday made four specific marketplace commitments: To double Dupont's R&D investments in "environmentally smart market opportunities" by 2015; grow annual revenue by $2 billion or more from products that create energy efficiency or reduce greenhouse gas emissions; double annual revenues to $8 billion from sales of non-depletable resources; and introduce at least 1,000 new safety products or services.
In addition, Holliday announced five 2015 "footprint goals," including reductions in greenhouse gases, water consumption, and airborne carcinogens, and ensuring that 100% of its off-site fleet of cars and trucks by 2015 "represent the leading technologies for fuel efficiency and fossil fuel alternatives."
Of course, Dupont also is grappling serious issues. Chief among them is a chemical called perfluorooctanoic acid, or PFOA, used by Dupont in Teflon, among other applications, which has come under fire by regulators, activists, and shareholders, who have accused the company of hiding information suggesting that a chemical might cause cancer, birth defects, and other ailments. Dupont says it is committed to reducing PFOA use.