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Kimberly-Clark to Cut GHG 5%, Water 25% by 2015

Kimberly-Clark, the company behind Kleenex, Scott and Huggies, has committed to a 25 percent cut in water use and five percent absolute reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2015, from a 2010 baseline.

Those targets are just two of a suite of 2015 sustainability goals, which Kimberly-Clark unveiled at the annual meeting of the Corporate Eco Forum (CEF), an invitation-only membership organization for Fortune 500 companies that demonstrate commitment to sustainability.

Other K-C targets call for the following, all by 2015:

  • Zero manufacturing waste to landfill
  • Maintaining the quality of water discharge
  • Use of 100 percent certified fiber
  • 20 percent reduction in packaging environmental impact, from a 2010 baseline
  • 25 percent of net sales to come from environmentally innovative products
  • 250 million “new consumers touched”.

The new goals will expand K-C’s sustainability focus from being primarily on the environment, to encompassing healthy working environments, reaching new consumers around the world, and addressing broader global commitments such as the UN Millennium Development goals. The company first set environmental improvement goals with a five-year time horizon in 1994 with its VISION 2000 program, and the company says it has been raising the bar on environmental goals every five years.

The innovative product goal is new this year, and the packaging environmental impact target has been broadened from a more narrow packaging reduction goal. K-C said its performance against Vision 2010 environmental goals will be revealed in the company’s 2010 sustainability report, to be released later this month.

“Kimberly-Clark’s Sustainability 2015 is a holistic way of weaving sustainable business practice and mindset into everything we do as an integral component of our Global Business Plan,” said Suhas Apte, vice president, global sustainability. “In addition to the Sustainability 2015 goals, Kimberly-Clark is establishing global focus areas to ensure long-term success and access to essential resources for our businesses and our communities around the world for generations to come,” Apte said.

K-C said that examples of existing programs consistent with these focus areas include its Professional’s Reduce Today, Respect Tomorrow program to reduce consumption and increase use of recycled production materials.

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