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Molson Coors Cuts Water Use 5% in One Year

Molson Coors cut its water use, energy use, waste and scope 2 carbon emissions in 2010, though its scope 1 emissions rose, according to the company’s 2011 corporate responsibility report.

From 2009 to 2010 the company cut its water use by five percent, from 252 million to 240 million hl. This water data includes Molson Coors’ branches in Canada, the UK and Ireland, and for its 42 percent share of MillerCoors.

Molson Coors has set a global target to reduce water use by 15 percent, per unit of production, by the end of 2012 from a 2008 baseline.

In 2010 the company completed watershed assessments at all its brewery locations, identifying breweries in water-stressed area or at risk of low water availability. Molson Coors is using the assessments to develop a company-wide watershed management program based on a pilot initiative in Golden, Colo.

In 2011, the company held its first Global Water Summit, where corporate responsibility teams (communications, water resources, brewery operations and supply chain) from across the business met to share best practices and develop plans and targets for the company’s Global Water Strategy.

At Molson Coors, water reduction targets are included in the Global Chief Supply Chain Officer’s performance plan, in the incentive mechanisms of his direct reports and in the functions of the broader Environment, Health & Safety team, including brewery managers.

The company says it intends to include more detailed water reporting, including data broken down by water source, in the future. It is also developing an approach to capture the water impacts, risks and opportunities within its supply chain, with plans to carry out assessments and “hot spot” analyses for the supply chain of each business unit, and to develop “hot spot” mitigation plans.

Both Molson Coors and MillerCoors have started to review the sustainability of barley farming in Idaho and the UK to better determine how water is used and identify areas of risk.

Molson Coors is the global water user sponsor for the Carbon Disclosure Project’s Water Disclosure Project, and in 2011 it reported to WDP for the second year.

Last year the company cut its energy use by three percent, from 9.7 billion to 9.4 billion MJ. In 2010 the company’s scope 1 emissions rose from 407,654 to 413,790 tons of CO2e, while scope 2 emissions fell from 544,105 to 534,338 tons. Last year it also started reporting scope 3 emissions, measured as 36,807 tons for 2010.

The company says that in 2010 it revised how it reports purchased CO2. For the UK this meant moving purchased CO2 to Scope 3. For the U.S., 50 percent of purchased CO2 is reported as fugitive emissions (Scope 1) and the other 50 percent as Scope 3.

In Scope 3, the company reports U.K. business travel, transportation and distribution, waste generated in operations, barley deliveries, purchased CO2, emissions from its national distribution center and emissions from purchased goods and services.

Molson Coors also reported a 14 percent improvement in Scope 1 and 2 emission efficiency from a 2008 baseline, beating a goal of a 7 percent improvement by the end of 2012, but did not define or give a measure of that efficiency.

Total waste fell five percent in 2010, from 252 to 240 tons, although the report notes that while spent grain for Canada was included in this figure for 2008 for 2009, it was removed for 2010.

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