Autodesk, Vestas Listed Among Portfolio 21's Top 10 Green Companies for 2010

Autodesk, Vestas Listed Among Portfolio 21's Top 10 Green Companies for 2010

Design software developer Autodesk, Vestas, the East Japan Railway and Henkel are among the firms that have made the Top 10 Green Companies list compiled by global mutual fund Portfolio 21.

Based in Portland, Oregon, Portfolio 21 focuses on firms that have demonstrated a commitment to environmental business practices.

The fund currently invests $323 million in 105 companies across 20 countries.

Its recently announced leading picks for 2010 range from the Danish wind energy company Vestas and Autodesk to Brazilian cosmetics firm Natura Cosmeticos.

Here is Portfolio 21's top 10 roster for this year in alphabetical order, along with some of the key reasons the fund cited for placing the companies on the list:

Autodesk: A leading developer of two- and three-dimensional design software that facilitates sustainable building practices, Autodesk recently partnered with the U.S. Green Building Council with a goal of integrating its technology with the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system.

East Japan Railway:EJR has worked to reduce its power consumption by introducing reduced-weight railcars, developing the world's first hybrid prototype train and installing solar and wind systems at some of its eco-stations, which had also piloted use of piezoelectric floors.

Henkel:
The German manufacturer that introduced the first phosphate-free detergent in 1983 produces a range of bio-based detergents and adhesives. More than two-thirds of its product formulations are based on renewable raw materials and all new products are required to contribute to sustainable development.

Itron: The firm, based in the U.S., provides metering, data collection and software solutions for nearly 8,000 utilities worldwide. Its products include an advanced metering infrastructure system that enables two-way communication between utilities and customers as well as participation in demand response and energy conservation programs.

Natura Cosmeticos:
The Brazilian socially and environmentally conscious cosmetics company focuses on the sustainable use of natural resources and respect for local cultural tradition by partnering with rural suppliers, indigenous communities and family farm groups. It makes more than 600 products from shampoo to sunscreen.

Potlatch: The U.S. integrated forest products company, as a Real Estate Investment Trust, owns about 1.6 million acres of forestland in Arkansas, Idaho, Minnesota and Wisconsin. It recently achieved Forest Stewardship Council certification for all its forestlands (about 50 percent of the company's total fiber needs).

Red Electrica: Spain's leading power transmission company manages the country's electricity distribution system. Spain has become the second-largest European wind-power producer and expects to have wind farms producing 13,000 megawatts by 2011.

Sharp:
Products made by the Japanese consumer and industrial electronics company offer energy efficiency, resource efficiency and ease of recycling. Sharp is the world's largest producer of solar cells, is one of the few industry leaders to support a solution to e-waste in the U.S., and considers its manufacturing facilities to be green or "super green."

Umicore: A basic materials company based in Belgium, Umicore is the world's leading recycler of precious metals. About half of the company's revenues are generated through products that provide environmental benefits, such as materials for rechargeable batteries, fuel cells, and auto catalysts.

Vestas: The firm develops, manufactures and markets wind energy products. Its sustainability strategy is based on manufacturing equipment and operating facilities for the renewable energy sector.

{related_content}The 10 firms were held in Portfolio 21 in the following percentages as of December 31, 2009, the fund said -- Autodesk: 0.9 percent, East Japan Railway: 1.0 percent, Henkel: 1.9 percent, Itron: 0.3 percent, Natura Cosmeticos: 0.6 percent, Potlatch: 1.0 percent, Red Electrica: 0.9 percent, Sharp: 0.9 percent, Umicore: 0.5 percent, Vestas: 1.4 percent.


Image CC licensed by Flickr user tenaciousme.