Newsweek’s 2012 Green Rankings Encourage Social Innovation and Sustainability

Eastman Chemical Company has been ranked fourth out of 34 U.S. companies in the Materials sector in Newsweek’s 2012 Green Rankings. Eastman had an overall rank of 204 out of the 500 largest publicly traded U.S. companies, a big improvement of 152 places from its 2011 ranking! Eastman is a global specialty chemicals company that produces a broad range of advanced materials, additives and functional products, specialty chemicals and fibres that are found in products that we use daily. Published annually since 2009, the Newsweek Green Rankings project is the first effort by a major media organisation to rank companies based on their environmental footprint, management of that footprint and sustainability communications.

The rankings provide a cross-industry framework for comparing the environmental commitment and performance of the largest publicly traded companies worldwide. Eastman was ranked at the top of the materials sector for environmental management, which is an assessment of each company’s environmental footprint, including its policies, social innovation programs, targets and initiatives.

Eastman’s ranking improvement is partly due to the company’s increased reporting transparency, which includes the release of its second sustainability report and first-ever Global Reporting Initiative publication, and an overall continued focus on tracking and improvement against aggressive sustainability goals. Recently, Eastman joined the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, the leading organisation for advocating corporate sustainability, and was also named a 2012 ENERGY STAR® Partner of the Year by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency earlier this year.

Godefroy Motte, Senior Vice President and Chief Regional and Sustainability Officer says, “This ranking is a reflection of Eastman’s ongoing commitment to sustainability. We are excited that our increased focus on enhancing sustainably-advantaged products through innovative design and materials is creating new business opportunities for our customers; a major objective in Eastman’s sustainability journey.” As a world leader in the diverse markets it serves, Eastman is focused on delivering social innovation and technology-based solutions while maintaining its commitment to safety and sustainability.

Newsweek itself ranks 15th in this green survey; in 2011, more than 95 percent of the publisher’s paper purchases (approximately 77,703 metric tons) came through suppliers adhering to rigorous, chain-of-custody forest certification, meaning the paper was produced in the most environmentally sustainable way possible. (That’s a nice ranking to go out on, as the magazine has since announced that it will be a digital publication only, and will not publish a print edition.) IBM earned the number one position with its “Smarter Planet” social innovation products that help clients measure and reduce their resource consumption and save money. At its Zurich lab, water that cools a supercomputer is used to warm nearby buildings.

Photo Credit: The Daily Beast Newsweek