Colgate-Palmolive on track to meet 2015 water reduction target

Major toothpaste company Colgate-Palmolive has achieved a 30% reduction in water use per tonne of product, mainly through improving its assessment of water use at its manufacturing sites.

According to its 2012 sustainability report, the 30% reduction puts the company a step closer towards its 2015 water reduction target of 40%.

Putting the decrease in water use into context, Colgate says that it has avoided using enough water to fill 4,700 Olympic-sized swimming pools.

Last year, Colgate's global manufacturing water usage stood at around 1.1 million cubic meters (m3) per tonne of product, a drop from 1.5 million m3 in 2005.

In addition to the company's manufacturing targets, Colgate is aiming to reduce the use of water associated with its products by 15% by 2015.

Since 2005, Colgate has managed a 15% reduction in energy and a 14% reduction in carbon emissions per unit of production in 2012 from 2005 levels.

Setting its 2015 sustainability targets in 2011, the company aims to reduce the energy consumption and carbon emissions per unit of production associated with the manufacture and distribution of its products by 20%.

Another of the company's 2015 goals is to reduce waste sent to landfills per unit of production by 15% and has so far reduced waste by 10% in the past two years.

Colgate's CEO Ian Cook said: "2012 was our second year of implementing the targets of our 2015 Sustainability Strategy. Having established our goals in the preceding year, in 2012 we aligned all of our global teams to these objec¬tives, the tools to accomplish them and the ways we will measure our progress in each of our three major sustainability areas: People, Performance and Planet".

Leigh Stringer


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