Footprint Reduction: Conserving Water
Nearly half of our sales are from products that have water as a key ingredient. Maintaining freshwater health is fundamental for us and we’ve found opportunities in our supply chain and product development areas to realize ambitious water conservation goals while also reducing costs, distinguishing our brands, meeting consumers’ needs and growing our business.
Between 2007 and 2011 we reduced our water usage by 14 percent. By 2020 we plan to reduce our water usage by another 20 percent by continuing to concentrate products and adopting more water-efficient processes across our manufacturing network. For example our transition to concentrated Clorox® bleach saves resources across the life cycle of the product including 196 million gallons of water annually.
We’ll also continue to work on water restoration through the expansion and improvement of Clorox’s current waste water treatment infrastructure.
We’re committed to reducing our water usage by 20 percent by 2020 (per case sold versus 2011) by continuing to concentrate products and adopting more water-efficient processes across our manufacturing network. Since 2008, we have reduced our water consumption by 33 percent on an intensity basis (per case of product sold) and 23 percent on an absolute basis. This represents a reduction of 237 million gallons of water used in 2016 versus 2008. Five years into our current 2020 goal period, we have reduced our water consumption by 21 percent on an intensity basis (per case of product sold versus 2011) versus our 20 percent reduction goal. On an absolute basis we have reduced water use by 14 percent in this same period. This represents a reduction of 127 million gallons of water used in 2016 versus 2011.
The chart below shows our year-over-year progress in reducing our water consumption:
* Clorox sold its Oakland, California, offices in 2013 and discontinued its Venezuela operations in 2014. Total water consumption for 2011 (the baseline year for our 2020 water reduction goal) was recalculated to exclude water consumed at these facilities. Data for 2012 and 2013 were not recalculated.
*Clorox acquired Renew Life in 2016. Total water consumption for 2011 (the baseline year for our 2020 water reduction goal) was recalculated to include estimated water consumption from related facilities associated with this acquisition. Data for 2012–2015 were not recalculated.
Our water conservation efforts include a number of water recycling infrastructure and equipment upgrade initiatives, as well as changes to some of our water management practices. Most notably, our Kingsford plants in Parsons, West Virginia, and Belle, Missouri, both reduced their water consumption by more than 40 percent primarily through investments in water recycling infrastructure and replacing water with air compressor systems.
We’ve also made a number of other changes, such as replacing water-cooled compressors with air-cooled compressors and improved our filtration and recovery systems. Additionally, we performed extensive water process mapping and conservation training at all manufacturing facilities, resulting in better plant level water practices.
Beginning in 2014, we’ve conducted third-party independent assurance of our water use.