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P&G Doubles 2012 Green Goals

The Procter and Gamble Co. intends to double its per-unit reduction targets for greenhouse gas emissions, waste generation and water and energy consumption by 2012 as part of an effort to make its environmental goals more robust.

The company said in 2007 it wanted to reduce impacts in these categories by 10 percent against a 2007 baseline but a series of successful initiatives made the company feel confident it could take a more aggressive approach.

For example, its Mehoopany, Pa., paper making facility is now recovering waste heat from the paper drying process for re-use, which is helping the company reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions by 13,600 metric tons annually. In 2008, the company said it had reduced absolute energy consumption 6 percent, greenhouse gas emissions by 8 percent, water use by 7 percent and solid waste by 21 percent. 

Now the company is aiming for 20 percent reductions in emissions, waste, energy and water use, per unit of production, by 2012 compared to 2007 levels. That will give the company a 50 percent reduction between 2002 and 2012.

It also wants sales of sustainability-driven products to hit $50 billion by 2012, compared to its initial goal of $20 billion. Products in this category produce an environmental footprint that is at least 10 percent smaller than previous or alternative items. P&G introduced seven of these products during the last year that either use less energy or have improved packaging that generates less waste and uses less fuel for transport.

This includes Tide Coldwater and Ariel Cool Clean, two laundry detergents that can be used with cold water, which is less energy-intensive than hot water. Downy Single Rinse saves water because laundry loads, as the name suggests, require only one rinsing. Its Braun Series 7 sports redesigned packaging to optimize shipping and reduce fuel use. 

P&G said it also will expand its Live, Learn and Thrive program to give 300 million children access to 3 billion liters of clean water. Originally the company said it would deliver 2 billion liters to 250 million kids.

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