Environmental Sustainability

New Long-Term Vision

Recently, P&G announced a new long-term environmental sustainability vision.

Why now?

P&G is the largest consumer packaged goods company in the world today. This very fact, coupled with our Purpose-inspired Growth Strategy—improving the lives of more consumers, in more parts of the world, more completely—requires us to continue to grow responsibly. And it also requires us to accelerate our commitment to helping solve some of the world’s sustainability challenges.

We developed this vision over the course of a year, partnering with external experts and soliciting input from hundreds of P&G employees at all levels and functions.

Our complete visionary end-points are outlined below. These end-points are long-term in nature because some of them will take decades to come to fruition.

  • Using 100% renewable or recycled materials for all products and packaging
  • Having zero consumer waste go to landfills
  • Designing products to delight consumers while maximizing the conservation of resources

  • Powering our plants with 100% renewable energy
  • Emitting no fossil-based CO2 or toxic emissions
  • Delivering effluent water quality that is as good as or better than influent water quality with no contribution to water scarcity
  • Having zero manufacturing waste go to landfills

Information on Our Product End-Points

What this means

A renewable resource is simply defined as one that is produced by natural processes at a rate comparable to its rate of consumption. P&G already uses significant amounts of renewable materials in our products and packaging. However, we still use many nonrenewable materials, such as those derived from petroleum and other fossil fuels. Our vision is to use materials that are renewably sourced. Materials will come from traditional sources such as biomass and agricultural products, and research is also ongoing to understand how raw materials can be derived from biological processes such as fermentation. In addition to being renewably sourced, these materials will also be sustainable, meaning their production will not result in the destruction of critical ecosystems, loss of habitat for endangered species, or other detrimental impacts on the environment or human communities.

Having zero consumer waste going to landfills

What this means

In the developed world, waste can be disposed of in four ways: recycling, compost, waste-to-energy, and landfills. The first three give value to the waste, whereas waste that ends up in landfills has no value. In the developing world, waste is primarily disposed in uncontrolled dumps, where it also has no value. Our vision is to have all waste end up in a valued waste stream (e.g., recycling, composting, waste-to-energy without toxic emissions).

What this means

Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) has shown that for some major P&G products, the largest environmental impact occurs when consumers use our products. As the world’s largest consumer packaged goods company, this represents a significant and unique opportunity for P&G to have a meaningful impact in sustainability. We will continue to enable consumers to reduce their environmental footprint by designing products that meet their needs relative to value and performance and, in addition, allow them to conserve resources. Our cold water laundry detergents (Tide Coldwater, Ariel) are examples. In those instances where consumer habit changes are required to deliver the environmental benefit, consumer education will be part of the solution.

Information on Our Operational End-points

What this means

Renewable energy sources include those based on sunlight, wind, biomass, tides, and geothermal heat rather than fossil fuels. Our vision is that all energy powering our plants will be sourced from on-site renewable sources, or power from the grid that is generated by renewable sources.

What this means

P&G is not an energy intensive company, so our CO2 emissions today are relatively small. However, by moving to 100% renewable energy to power our plants, we will drive this number even lower by eliminating petroleum-based CO2. In the future end state, what little CO2 emissions we will have can be expected to come only from renewable biomass. In addition, we envision an end state where all other reportable emissions are driven to zero.

What this means

P&G continually improves our operations to preserve the quality of water in the communities in which we operate. We will also ensure sustainable water management by both our operations and consumer use of our products. This commitment includes water reduction goals, use of new technologies, product innovation using a Life Cycle Assessment, and siting decisions using a watershed approach, which looks holistically at water supply where a plant could be built.

Having zero manufacturing waste going to landfills

What this means

Our manufacturing waste can be disposed of in four ways: recycling, repurposing, waste-to-energy, and landfills. The first three give value to the waste, whereas waste that ends up in landfills has no value. Our vision is to have all manufacturing waste end up in a valued waste stream (e.g., recycling, repurposing, waste-to-energy without toxic emissions).