Canadian Tire Corporation completed 389 environmental initiatives in fiscal year 2010. These changes are forecasted to annually avoid about $6 million in costs, 610 tons of waste, and more than 7,800 tons of greenhouse gas emissions.
The operator of automotive retail, specialty stores and gas stations, which has 58,000 employees, focused its initiatives on three key areas: products, product transport and buildings. The programs involved reduced packaging, fuel efficiency enhancements to fleet vehicles, new energy efficient store lighting, heating and cooling systems, and central energy management.
The company says it has further integrated environmental changes into its day-to-day operations by including sustainability objectives in 2011 operating plans and having a committee of the board of directors oversee the company’s sustainability efforts.
Of the completed initiatives, 185 were in buildings and operations, 161 in products and packaging and 43 in product transportation. Buildings and operations accounted for 72 percent of the greenhouse gases avoided, or 5,677 tons, and 73 percent of the energy avoided, or 78,019 GJ (see chart).
Building initiatives included lighting, energy management, roof replacement, new store builds and retrofits of heating, venting and air conditioning (HVAC) systems. Canadian Tire also operates a solar PV installation and a geothermal plant, which began operations in 2008. So far these two facilities have generated over 176,000 kWh and helped avoid 41 tons of greenhouse gases, the company said.
Adjustments to products reduced packaging size and weight, and modified handling processes to reduce damages throughout the supply chain, Canadian Tire said. It began selling post-consumer recycled products, including step stools, laundry baskets, storage bins, tables and totes, from Canadian vendor Gracious Living.
Canadian Tire also contributed $17.9 million to government-mandated community blue box and industry product stewardship and recycling programs in 2010.