"We are all passionate about making real progress regarding the environment," said a statement from Wal-Mart CEO Lee Scott. "By working together, we can help each other save money, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and pass the savings on to our customers. Sustainability is good for the environment, and it's also good for business." ... Earlier this year Wal-Mart announced that it would seek to eliminate 30 percent of the energy used by stores, with the corporate goal of eventually being fueled 100 percent by renewable energy. The retailer also plans to eliminate 25 percent of the solid waste from U.S. stores in the next three years, with the corporate goal of producing zero waste.
Wal-Mart also is targeting increased efficiency of its truck fleet by 25 percent over the next three years, with efficiency doubled within 10 years except in the North, where Wal-Mart utilizes white reflective roof membranes, resulting in a 10 percent lower cooling load.
Let's hope that this is more than just a clever PR move and that the company actually makes a concerted effort to meet those goals. I hope that corporate America has finally seen the light that being a responsible citizen can make customers happy, reduce costs, and lessen the burden placed on the world. Even miniscule changes by a company of that size (and a company so, um, red) can have a major impact in both the environment and the business world. However, I'm not holding my breath yet. We'll see what happens.