Abbott, the global health care company, is the first FORTUNE 500 company to go “carbon neutral” with its entire US fleet of company sales vehicles through a transition to more fuel-efficient vehicles and the purchase of carbon offsets.
Abbott has also unveiled a new Global Energy Policy and announced the installation of a 500 kWh solar power system to produce electricity for parts of a manufacturing plant in southern California.
Corporate fleet vehicles are driven an average of 25,000 miles per year—nearly doubling the mileage, fuel consumption, and emissions of personal vehicles. A typical fleet of 500 vehicles can put more than 6,000 tons of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions into the air annually.
At Abbott, the company’s fleet represents close to 11% of the company’s total emissions. Abbott will reduce the carbon emissions from its 6,000-vehicle fleet in the United States by offering a hybrid vehicle option starting immediately. The company will then purchase carbon offsets in early 2008 to neutralize the balance of the fleet’s impact on the environment—to become “carbon neutral.”
Abbott’s new Global Energy Policy outlines several commitments the company is making to further improve its impact on the environment, including goals to:
Achieve a 12% reduction in overall electric energy purchased by 2011.
Achieve a 30% reduction in overall CO2 emissions by 2011.
Invest in renewable energy capital projects, or energy sourcing, that produce no CO2 emissions at major manufacturing locations by 2011.
Eliminate 12% of combined fuel oil/coal consumption by switching to cleaner fuels by 2011.
In an effort to increase its use of renewable energy in California, Abbott is installing a 500 kWh solar power system to produce electricity for parts of the company’s vascular plant in the southern part of the state. This marks the company’s first solar panel installation in the United States.
Abbott has been named to the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index (DJSI World). Abbott is also a member of EPA Climate Leaders, an industry/government partnership focused on a collaborative approach to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and other climate change issues.