Skip to main content

First Takes: US Emissions Grew 4% in 2010, Nike Targets Supply Chain Toxics, & More

<p>Energy-related CO2 rises, along with GDP in 2010; Nike steps up efforts to squeeze toxics from its supply chain; Seventh Generation adds a new marketing manager.</p>

• GDP Rises, Pushing Up CO2: The fact that U.S. emissions are climbing along with economic activity is a worrying sign: Despite all the efforts made to date, the country has not yet decoupled growth from carbon. When the economy picks up full steam, we could find ourselves back at square one, environmentally-speaking. When Gross Domestic Product rose 3 percent last year, all that economic activity brought energy-related carbon dioxide emissions along with it. Energy-related emissions grew 3.9 percent, the largest percentage increase since 1988, according to the Energy Information Administration. Another contributing factor: Coal consumption increased 6 percent. Emissions levels are 6 percent below 2005 levels; The U.S. pledged to reduce emissions 17 percent below 2005 levels by 2020 as part of the Copenhagen Accord.

• Nike Boosts Commitment to a Toxic-Free Supply Chain: Last month Greenpeace released a report linking several big-name sports brands to textile manufacturers accused of polluting Chinese rivers. It looks like Nike is the first to respond with a soon-to-be launched action plan to phase out hazardous chemicals from its supply chain in the next eight weeks, reports. Greenpeace urged Adidas to follow suit, and appears to be stoking a potential rivalry between the two brands over the issue.

• Seventh Generation Enlists Industry Vet as New Marketing Chief: Green Cleaning Pioneer Seventh Generation has tapped Joey Bergstein as its new Chief Marketing Officer. Bergstein hails from spirits company Diageo, where he led its global rum division as senior vice president. Seventh Gen is facing significant growing pains as it reaches for new, bigger markets: Bergstein's appointment is the latest shuffle in Seventh Gen's recent history, following the addition of a new CEO in 2009, the ouster of founder and former CEO Jeffrey Hollender in 2010, and the subsequent departure of the new CEO in 2011.

• Yahoo!'s HQ Strikes LEED Gold: Yahoo!'s headquarters in Sunnyvale, a seven-building campus encompassing 1 million-square-feet of office space, has earned LEED-Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council under the standard for existing buildings. Jones Lang LaSalle, which manages the property and oversaw the certification application process, said upgrades to make the 11-year-old buildings more resource efficient were so effective that the savings offset the costs for LEED certification within 18 months. Steps taken include retrocommissioning building systems and reducing water efficiency with solar-powered ultra low-flow urinals.

• Kaiser Ups its Target for Waste: Kaiser Permanente plans to increase its landfill diversion rate to 40 percent by 2015. The healthcare giant currently reuses, recycles or composts 31 percent of its waste, which ranges from food waste from its cafeterias to paper from its administrative functions and the blue sterilization wrap that encases its surgical instruments.

More on this topic

More by This Author