Xylem reports broad sustainability advances, beats greenhouse gas reduction target by more than 40 percent

Xylem Inc. announced it had succeeded in reducing greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) intensity, exceeding its planned target.
Xylem reports broad sustainability advances, beats greenhouse gas reduction target by more than 40 percent

Xylem’s 2019 Sustainability Report. (Image source: Xylem Inc.)

Xylem’s 2019 Sustainability Report, “Water for a Healthy World,” launched today, revealed the Company had achieved a 28.3 percent reduction in GHG intensity, against a target of 20 percent set in 2014. The report also demonstrated over-achievement or material progress on all of its 2019 sustainability targets.

“Water for a Healthy World,” which has been verified by the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) as conforming to GRI’s reporting standards, details Xylem’s progress on a wide range of sustainability topics: from energy and water intensity, to innovation, diversity and inclusion, disaster relief, corporate citizenship, community impact and employee volunteerism. In addition to beating its own stretch targets for greenhouse gas emissions, the water technology leader also reduced product energy intensity.

Xylem’s corporate social responsibility program, Xylem Watermark, hit new highs in employee engagement, reaching 58 percent participation and over 70,000 volunteer hours in 2019, alone. The program also launched a global Humanitarian Disaster Response Team, engaging employees, customers, and suppliers in responding to water-related disasters, such as floods and hurricanes. Xylem Watermark partners with over 250 non-profit organizations, globally.

“The importance of water to community sustainability is more apparent today than perhaps any other time in recent history,” said Patrick Decker, Xylem’s President and CEO. “The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the critical role that clean water and reliable sanitation play in preventing and controlling disease and in making communities resilient in the face of extraordinary challenges.”

Xylem’s 2019 performance highlights the sustainability momentum the Company has achieved, having been recognized as a top performer across a range of pre-eminent sustainability listings – including Fortune’s Change the World list, Barron’s 100 Most Sustainable Companies, and a 100 percent rating on the Human Rights Campaign’s Corporate Equality Index.

“With water and resource management at the core of our business, Xylem is deeply committed to sustainability,” continued Decker. “It is fundamental to who we are and what we do. We feel both privileged and proud to be making progress, alongside our customers and partners, and making a difference for our stakeholders, globally. Now, as part of our mission to solve the world’s toughest water and resource challenges -- making the world more sustainable for everyone -- we’re committing ourselves to doing even more.”

“Water for a Healthy World” marks the finish line for Xylem’s previous set of 5-year sustainability targets, set in 2014, and the first year of tracking its bolder 2025 goals, set last year.

“A year ago, we expanded our sustainability strategy and set 2025 goals in response to escalating water challenges around the world,” said Claudia Toussaint, Xylem’s General Counsel and Chief Sustainability Officer. “We are a company that pushes boundaries and are motivated to achieve a sustainable future. So, when we refreshed our sustainability goals, we built on our momentum and got more ambitious. We expanded our sustainability strategy, put greater focus on advancing sustainability across our customer products and solutions, and integrated sustainability even more tightly with our business strategy.”

Xylem’s 2025 signature goals include commitments to:

  • Save more than 16.5 billion cubic meters of water through the use of advanced technologies;
  • Prevent over 7 billion cubic meters of polluted water from flooding communities or entering local waterways;
  • Provide access to clean water and sanitation solutions for at least 20 million people;
  • Ensure 100 percent of employees have access to clean water and safe sanitation at work, at home and during natural disasters;
  • Give 1 percent of xylem employees’ time and 1 percent of company profits to water-related causes and education;
  • Use 100 percent renewable energy and 100 percent process water recycling at its major facilities.

Source: Xylem Inc.

More articles on this topic

Global Water and Wastewater Utilities Take Aim at Climate Change

31.05.2023 -

Water and wastewater utilities are executing ambitious decarbonization goals, according to a new survey of 100 utilities in North America and Europe. Sponsored by Xylem, the survey finds that 75% of respondents intend to achieve greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction goals by 2040 or earlier. 48% of respondents have set a net-zero emissions goal, and 42% have set an emissions reduction goal.

Read more