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Sustainability Report: McKesson Finds $5m in Energy, Waste Savings

Health services company McKesson saved more than $5 million in financial year 2010 from energy savings, waste reductions and reusable packaging, according to its corporate citizenship report.

McKesson, which has 32,500 employees and is ranked 14th on the Fortune 500, provides pharmaceutical and medical-surgical supply management as well as healthcare IT and other services.

The company introduced more fuel-efficient vehicles, replacing 6-cylinder vehicles in its U.S. pharmaceutical sales fleet with 4-cylinder models. The replacement is expected to cut CO2 emissions by 20 percent, McKesson said.

But an increase in the proportion of trucks in McKesson’s fleet means average CO2 emissions per vehicle went up last year, the company said.

McKesson notes that 16 percent of its employees work from home.

In 2009 (FY10) McKesson received the Walmart 2009 Health and Wellness Supplier of the Year for multiple projects resulting in shared operational efficiencies, sustainability improvements and cost savings.

One of the projects involved consolidating orders to allow more efficient use of shipping containers, which saved nearly 200,000 gallons of gasoline.

In a waste-reduction initiative, employees contacted a local plastic recycling company and developed a process to recycle unusable pill bottles.  The change generated $400,000 in annual savings.

Other actions McKesson has taken to reduce waste include improving recycling opportunities in offices and distribution centers, eliminating disposable cups, replacing tri-fold paper towels with continuous roll paper towels and installing projectors in conference rooms to reduce the need for printed materials.

To reduce energy use, the company has adjusted thermostats to match building occupancy and “de-lamped” where it can take advantage of natural light

During the financial year, McKesson says it did not receive any significant sanctions for environmental non-compliance, or experience any significant  spills.

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