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Kimberly-Clark reports progress toward Sustainability 2015 goals

2011 sustainability report highlights company’s efforts to sustain resources for the future by focusing on people, planet, and products.

Kimberly-Clark Corp. has released its 2011 Sustainability Report, Full Circle, highlighting the company’s progress toward its Sustainability 2015 goals. The report is K-C’s ninth on sustainability and is structured around the company’s Sustainability 2015 strategy framework of People, Planet, and Products, introduced last year. According to the company, the new framework represents K-C’s most ambitious and comprehensive sustainability strategy to date, and embodies the company’s commitment to weaving a sustainable business practice and mindset into every facet of the organization and as an integral part of its global business plan. 

“In 2011, we introduced Sustainability 2015, an aggressive set of goals and strategies that encompasses the full circle of our responsibilities and opportunities to improve lives by contributing to the environmental, social, and economic success in the communities we operate around the world,” says Suhas Apte, vice president, Global Sustainability for K-C. “I’m proud to report we made progress on the majority of our goals during the first year of our five-year program, advancing in such areas as workplace safety, supplier social compliance standards, water and energy reductions, third-party-certified fiber sourcing, and generating net sales from environmentally innovative products, as well as in many other areas.”

Among the notable 2011 K-C sustainability accomplishments cited in the report are the following:

• Sourced 99.9% of its fiber from suppliers certified by sustainable forestry practices

• Generated 13% of 2011 net sales from environmentally innovative products

• Accomplished its goal of zero workplace fatalities

• Communicated to all of its key suppliers its Supplier Social Compliance Standards, which encourage suppliers to align its operations with K-C’s Code of Conduct practices and internationally accepted standards for corporate social responsibility and human rights

• Achieved zero manufacturing waste to landfill from all its European personal care business facilities

• Extended the Huggies brand Every Little Bottom campaign in the U.S. to assist moms who struggle to provide their babies clean disposable diapers

• Expanded the Huggies diaper composting initiatives by opening a second K-C-sponsored recycling plant in New Zealand

• Kleenex brand became the first U.S. consumer tissue to offer Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified tissue products and extended its Kimberly-Clark Professional business’ FSC certification to more than 95% of its tissue and towel lines in North America

• Initiated water-replenishment projects in India, Israel, Colombia, and Spain, anticipating an annualized return of 205 million gal of water to surrounding communities

• Conducted social initiatives in 23 countries, providing cash and product donations totaling more than $32 million

“Sustainability is no longer only in the realm of our operations, it is embedded across our entire value chain in every function, brand, and business at K-C,” says Apte. “Our progress in 2011 reflects the hard work of our employees worldwide in helping to integrate sustainable business practices into everything we do. And while we are proud of our 2011 efforts, we realize this is an area in which our work will never be done.”

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