Koch Companies Recognized with 300 Stewardship Awards Since 2009
April 20, 2011
– From January 2009 to present, Koch companies have earned 300 local-, state- and national-level awards for safety and environmental excellence.
These honors recognize these companies for efforts to operate plants responsibly; implement technologies to cut emissions and conserve energy, water and other resources; and manufacture customer-preferred products.
“Our companies understand that long-term success means we must create real value for our customers and society not only by supplying superior products but also by being innovative in how we manufacture everything from paper products to low-sulfur fuels,” says Dave Robertson, president and chief operating officer of Koch Industries, Inc. “We are dedicated to meeting our customers’ demand for quality products while working safely and finding cost-effective ways to conserve energy and reduce waste and emissions.
“We recognize our ability to add value doesn’t stop at our fence line,” Robertson said. “Over decades of operations, we have collaborated with many organizations who share our commitment to stewardship and responsibility and science-based programs.”
For example, the company has worked with The Nature Conservancy on projects aimed at preserving land and habitat. In 2010, Georgia-Pacific donated 682 acres near Sauna, Ore., to The Nature Conservancy. Koch companies provide support to the Fred C. and Mary R. Koch Foundation, which made a $1 million grant to The Nature Conservancy in Kansas to help with its acquisition of the nearly 11,000-acre Tall grass Prairie National Preserve.
Alan Pollok, state director of the Conservancy’s Kansas Chapter, said “We are honored to use this generous gift to help permanently protect one of the best examples of unregimented tall grass prairies found in the Flint Hills region. The generosity of the Fred C. and Mary R. Koch Foundation is an important commitment to environmental stewardship and conservation in Kansas.”
Koch companies’ dedication to responsible corporate behavior has resulted in industry-recognized performance at many sites. For example, for three consecutive years, Flint Hills Resources has been named one of the “World’s Most Ethical Companies” by the Ethisphere Institute. The honor reflects the company’s “outstanding commitment to ethical leadership, compliance practices and corporate social responsibility.”
Koch companies also work with various state and local agencies to share knowledge. As an example, GeorgiaPacific’ consumer products business joined the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency SmartWaySM Transport Partnership, a collaboration between EPA and the freight industry to increase energy efficiency and reduce air pollution. In 2009, GP received the program’s SmartWay Excellence Award for achievements such as these: increasing intermodal shipping (truck to rail to truck) by 39 percent in 2008 vs. 2007, reducing fuel consumption by 2.6 million gallons; reducing total miles traveled from manufacturing point to customer delivery, which equaled about 4 million miles in 2008; and reducing deadhead (trucks returning empty) by 10 percent by better management of the transportation system and cooperation of contract carriers.
Koch companies are involved in environmental preservation projects onsite and in the community. Employees have participated in river cleanup and ecosystem restoration projects with groups such as Friends of the Mississippi River and the Potomac Conservancy, among others. In addition, Koch companies regularly share their sites certified by the international Wildlife Habitat Council with students and organizations such as the Audubon Society.
“As a member of the Wildlife Habitat Council since 1998, Koch Industries, Inc. takes a leadership role in the promotion of biodiversity, wildlife habitat enhancement, land restoration and conservation education," said Robert Johnson, president, Wildlife Habitat Council. "Koch and its subsidiaries maintain Council-certified programs at 10 facilities throughout the United States, including the 300,000-acre Matador Cattle Company Beaverhead Ranch (in Montana)."
Koch companies strive to be the “operator of choice” in their communities, underscoring the commitment to operating safely and in an environmentally responsible manner as well as developing and producing products improve quality of life while limiting impact on the environment. They also use third-party audits to help them identify areas of improvement and ensure that their products meet the highest standards.
For example, INVISTA conducts life-cycle analysis of its products to provide comprehensive, scientific assessment to evaluate environmental progress.
“INVISTA should be proud of the environmental leadership it is taking in the flooring industry,” Bernard R. Yaros, vice president of Boustead Consulting & Associates Ltd., “Pursuing complex third-party life-cycle analysis audits (for nylon 6,6 carpet fiber) like this in order to substantiate its environmental claims prior to them going to market is something a lot of companies don’t do, and it should be applauded.”
Koch companies also strive to be leaders when it comes to safe operations. In total, Koch companies have nearly 100 sites that have earned STAR certification in OSHA’s Voluntary Protection Programs. In addition, INVISTA is working with OSHA as part of a cooperative program to share information and develop new systems aimed at improving site-based safety programs.
More complete information is available at www.kochehs.com.