Dupont Masters Sustainability Assignment
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Dupont Masters Sustainability
Can sustainability improve a firm’s bottom line? American chemical company DuPont proves the answer is yes. At DuPont, sustainability is seen as more than just helping the environment. It is a market-driven process that enhances the bottom line and creates stakeholder value. Sustainability assists in the effective management of assets, liabilities, and owners’ equity.
DuPont’s quest for sustainability began two decades ago when the firm began to analyze how its plants were impacting the environment. It next turned its attention to energy and found that adopting more energy-efficient processes decreased energy costs. Since then, sustainability has morphed from merely an environmental initiative into a strategic tool. DuPont has reduced its global greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent and its water usage by 12 percent since 2004. It is also working on reducing waste in the product life cycle, resulting in significant cost savings for the firm.
DuPont recognizes that it can use sustainability not only to reduce costs but also to increase profits through new-product offerings. The company periodically creates what it terms market-facing goals for new customer products that reduce environmental impact. Since 2011 DuPont has generated $2 billion in revenue from products that reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Its offerings range from biofuels for automatic manufacturers to green building products.
Finally, DuPont believes it can share what it has learned from best practices in sustainability with other companies. Its DuPont Sustainable Solutions (DSS) business helps organizations adopt a triple-bottom-line (people-planet-profits) approach. This approach goes beyond the bottom line to incorporate human and environmental concerns. The company shares many of these practices with its suppliers to increase the sustainability of the supply chain. DuPont is an example of a successful company that has turned sustainability into a competitive advantage.
1. How is DuPont using sustainability as a competitive advantage?
2. Why is it important for DuPont to develop market-driven sustainability goals?
3. How can DuPont’s sustainability initiatives improve financial management?