Manufacturing and Sustainability
Like all packaged products, bottled water has an environmental impact. We’re taking steps to increase the energy efficiency of our operations – from sourcing, processing, bottling, transporting and packaging our products.
Our goal is always to do more with less. Nestlé Waters North America currently operates nine manufacturing plants, totaling more than 3.5 million square feet, designed and built to meet the U.S. Green Building Council Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification. We continue to undertake a number of initiatives that will further reduce our manufacturing and logistics footprint.
Nestlé Waters North America was the first non-alcoholic beverage manufacturer in the country to build plants certified LEED by the U.S. Green Building Council. According to the U.S. Green Building Council’s website, LEED certified buildings save money and resources and have a positive impact on the health of occupants, while promoting renewable, clean energy. For more information, visit the U.S. Green Building Council’s website: http://www.usgbc.org/.
Our regional approach to distribution for domestic bottled water brands reduces shipping distances, truck miles, emissions and fuel use. On average, our domestic water brands travel less than 300 miles from source to shelf.
Between 2009 and 2014, we have seen a 14% reduction in GHG emissions per 1,000 liters of packaged beverages produced. That is thanks to on-site bottle production, continuous reduction of plastic in bottles, use of natural light and other light-saving measures in the plants, heat energy recovery and other factors.
Reducing Our Fleet Emissions
It is a goal of ours to get water to those who want it, which is why our commitment to reducing our environmental footprint extends to how we deliver water. By locating our operations close to the communities where we sell our product, we use less fuel and cut our carbon emissions.
In recent years, we have invested in technology upgrades that are helping us reduce travel distances. In 2013, we installed a telematics system across our fleet of 1,600 delivery trucks. This is helping reduce truck engine idle time and save $1 million in fuel costs and nearly 300 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. We are also investing in low emission vehicle for our fleet.
In 2016, we added 150 medium-duty delivery trucks fueled by propane autogas. These trucks are expected to reduce CO2 emissions by more than 24.6 million pounds over the course of their use. They deliver product to customers in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Washington, D.C., Milwaukee and Fort Lauderdale. Deployments in 2016 will include New York City, Boston, Dallas, Houston, Chicago, Philadelphia and Baltimore.
In addition, we are exploring hybrid vehicle use as well. All of this is part of our commitment to upgrade a quarter of our fleet to zero emission vehicles by 2020.
Beginning in 2016, we will be transporting a portion of Maine’s iconic Poland Spring® Brand natural spring water by rail with the “Poland Spring Express,” initiative.
An estimated 4,000 containers of Poland Spring® brand bottled water will be shipped via rail instead of by truck in 2016. This translates into a reduction of more than 500,000 road miles and lowers carbon emissions.