Caterpillar is getting real about sustainability, according to Fortune Magazine’s Marc Gunther. When one considers that the company sells more mining equipment than any other and that its biggest customers include coal companies that oppose carbon regulation, Caterpillar’s changes, as outlined in a new sustainability report, are signs that the greening of corporate America is unstoppable, and that products and services that help solve big environmental problems can be good for business.
For Caterpillar, sustainable development, as discussed in the report, means nothing less than “meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs.”
The biggest and best example of sustainability inside Caterpillar is a unit called Cat Reman, Gunther writes, which sells remanufactured equipment and components. Cat is also supporting efforts to build mass transit systems to reduce pollution and congestion in 18 big cities in Asia and Latin America. Cat was also one of the original members of the U.S. Climate Action Partnership, a group of 10 companies and four big environmental groups that have called on the federal government to enact strong legislation to regulate greenhouse gases.