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CSR Roundup: Coca Cola Hellenic, Verizon and Molson Coors

Several big-name consumer brands published their annual corporate responsibility reports this week highlighting the progress they’ve made in reducing their environmental impacts, new goals, and areas that need improvement.

Verizon improved its carbon intensity and fleet fuel consumption, although its absolute greenhouse gas emissions inched up slightly. Molson Coors Brewing Co. reduced emissions, water use, waste and energy use in 2008, while for the first time, absolute water use shrank despite an increase in overall production volume for Coca Cola Hellenic, one of Coca Cola's largest bottlers.

Below are some of the highlights from Coca Cola Hellenic, Verizon and Molson:

Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Co.

For the first time, the company reduced its absolute water use by 1 percent while overall production volume increased. Water use efficiency improved 4 percent: The company used 2.48 liters of water for every liter of beverage produced in 2008, which is 20 percent better than in 2002.

The company performs water risk assessments at each bottling plant. A quarter of the company’s bottling plants are in areas with water scare or water stressed watersheds. It treats now 94 percent of its wastewater, with a goal of treating all wastewater by late 2010.

Coca Cola Hellenic, which operates in 28 countries, began building the first of 15 planned combined heat and power (CHP) units that will reduce manufacturing-based greenhouse gas emissions by some 20 percent. CHP units in Romania, Northern Ireland and Italy will go online this year.

The company's absolute emissions grew 5.8 percent in 2008, while emissions per liter of beverage produced declined 2.9 percent. Coca Cola Hellenic purchased a slew of energy efficient coolers in 2008 that will reduce emissions by another 29,000 metric tonnes. The new coolers use half as much energy as current units. The company’s new fleet initiatives are also expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by roughly 13,000 tonnes every year.

The company upped the amount of recycled PET in its plastic bottles by 67 percent in 2008, compared to the previous year.

Molson Coors Brewing Co.

Molson Coors, which scores water consumption at each of its 18 breweries in the U.S., Canada and the U.K., reduced water use by 4 percent. It has set a goal of improving its water efficiency by 4 percent by late 2009.

Molson Coors reduced energy use in 2008 by 1 percent. It has established a company-wide Energy Council. In the U.K., the company has replaced all CFC refrigeration, while also implementing a water storage aeration unit that eliminates the need for an electrical compressed air system.

The company reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 12 percent last year. Molson Coors is measuring the carbon footprint of its products through Tesco and Wal-Mart programs, and is also a member of the Carbon Trust.   

Molson Coors cut its solid waste generation by 27 percent. The company said its primary packaging materials are recyclable, lightweight or refillable. Its facility in Golden, Colo., reuses of recycles 95 percent of its waste, including 600 million pounds of wet cattle feed, which is a brewing byproduct, and three million gallons of ethanol, which is another byproduct.

In Canada, about 98 percent of Molson beer bottles are returned to points of sale by consumers; bottles are reused up to 20 times before being sold to glass manufacturers.


The company undertook a range of energy efficiency projects in 2008 that helped the company cut emissions by 83,900 metric tons. The lion’s share of reductions is the result of an upgrade of signal regeneration equipment with replacements that are four times more energy efficient.

The equipment Verizon purchases is generally 20 percent more efficient due to new internal standards that went into effect in January. Verizon will complete a PC power management software initiative that will save the company $7 million annually.

Carbon intensity at the company declined 3 percent -- from 66.5 metric tons per million dollars of revenue in 2007 to 64.4 metric tons a year later. Absolute emissions grew less than 1 percent from 6,220,000 metric tons of emissions in 2007 to 6,271,000 metric tons in 2008.

Also in 2008, Verizon doubled its hybrid fleet to 200; phasing out vehicle idling allowed the company to reduce overall fleet fuel consumption by one million gallons.

Verizon collected more than 1.13 million phones in 2008, a 6 percent increase over the previous year, while replacing 97 million paper bills with paperless billing saved 2,150 tons of paper.

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