Serious (#Green) Seventeen: #Sustainability in the New Year

If my title makes you think of Janet Evanovich, I hope it makes you smile. Smiling doesn’t always come easily these days for many of us committed to a sustainable and just world.

However, as I keep reminding my friends, the world is not flat, and no amount of bluster makes it so. And for a long time now, it’s the multinational corporations that have had the economic power to effect needed change. So, to remind us that there’s serious weight behind many sustainability agendas, I’ve chosen to highlight a few companies running full force into a renewable world.

From the Fortune 25 list, I’ve chosen the following:

Fortune Number Company Sustainability Initiatives Revenue
25 Microsoft Microsoft continues to meet its goal for corporate carbon neutrality and has made a commitment to:

  • Power its datacenters with at least 50 percent wind, solar and hydropower by the end of 2018.
  • Exceed 60 percent early in the next decade and keep improving further on an ongoing basis from there.
$93.58 B
20 HP In 2015, Hewlett-Packard Company made strong progress on its GHG emissions reduction goals across the value chain. Its 2016 goals are:

  • Achieve 100 percent renewable electricity usage in global operations with an interim target of 40 percent by 2020.
  • Reduce the GHG emissions intensity of HP’s product portfolio by 25 percent by 2020, compared with 2010.
$103.355 B (before the split into two companies)
9 Ford Motor Ford’s top sustainability strategies address climate change, smart mobility, water stewardship and human rights. $149.558 B
3 Apple Goal: Use 100 percent renewable energy. In 2015, 93 percent of their energy came from renewable sources, and they want to make it 100 percent. In Singapore, they power their facilities with a 32-megawatt solar project spread over more than 800 rooftops. In China, they’re adding 170 megawatts of solar to begin offsetting the energy used to make their products. Their data centers around the world run on 100 percent clean energy. $233.715 B
1 Wal-Mart Now in year 12 of its sustainability journey, Wal-Mart has set the following goals for 2025:

  • Achieve zero waste to landfill in Canada, Japan, U.K and the U.S.
  • Be powered by 50 percent renewable energy sources under a plan designed to achieve science-based targets.
  • Double sales of locally grown produce.
  • Expand sustainable sourcing to cover 20 key commodities, including bananas, grapes, coffee and tea.
  • Use 100 percent recyclable packaging for all private-label brands.
$482.13 B

Just these five companies alone represent $1,062,338,000,000 in revenue, which if they together formed a country would be the 19th-largest economy in the world. To echo a hopeful refrain of the day, “This train has left the station.”

As you kick off your new year with strong goals, remember you’re not alone. And we’re here to help with innovative solutions to help you drive your sustainability goals forward.  New to the intersection of sustainability and electronics? You can start here: At the Core of Sustainable Electronics.

Drop us a line at to tell us about your sustainability goals for 2017 — we’d love to hear about them.

Have a happy, healthy, productive and prosperous new year. I’m looking forward to working with you.


Carol Baroudi works for Arrow’s Value Recovery business promoting sustainability awareness and action. She is the lead author of Green IT For Dummies. Her particular focus is on electronics in the circular economy, with an emphasis on the IT asset disposition stage, e-waste and everything connected. Follow her on Twitter at @carol_baroudi and connect with her on LinkedIn at

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