3M achieved a 64 percent absolute reduction in greenhouse gas emissions between 2002 and 2014, according to its 2015 Sustainability Report. The report highlights 3M’s progress toward achieving its 2015 sustainability goals and introduces the company’s 2025 goals.
3M’s GHG reductions from 2002 base through 2013 resulted in a cumulative reduction of nearly 100 million metric tons of GHG emissions to the atmosphere compared with the emission level during the base year. Among other methods, 3M achieves GHG emission reductions through increasing the use of more sustainable raw materials, improving process and equipment efficiency, upgrading equipment, reducing the company’s demand for energy use, increasing its use of renewable energy and implementing and maintaining pollution control technologies. 3M’s 2025 goal is to ensure GHG emissions stay at least 50 percent below its 2002 baseline.
3M sites are required to report water data quarterly into a corporate tracking system. Efforts to reduce its overall water footprint have been paying off. The company’s year over year water use decreased 1.6 percent, from 43.3 in 2013 to 42.6 in 2014. The company has decreased its water use by 13 percent since its 2005 baseline year. The company recycled 25 percent of total water used in 2014.
To mitigate water risks where water is scarce or stressed, 3M’s corporate operating committee endorsed a water conservation goal as part of the company’s 2015 sustainability goals. Sites located in water-stresses areas are requested to develop a water conservation plan outlining current and future water conservation efforts. Annual stress-level screening evaluations are conducted for global operations using available updates from the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) Global Water Tool.
3M increased on-site reuse and recycling by nearly 40 percent from 2010 to 2015. Its 2025 goal is to achieve zero waste to landfill status at more than 30 percent of manufacturing sites.
Between 2005 and 2013 total energy use, indexed to net sales, has decreased by 30 percent. From 2000 through 2014, 3M reduced energy usage by over 50 percent indexed to net sales. Between 2015 and 2025, the company aims to improve energy efficiency indexed to net sales by 30 percent.