Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Climate Leaders Conference: Day 3

Third and last day, as "heat" wave in Boulder passed (I believe record may have been set yesterday with high near 70 degrees), eager CL participants packed sessions all day long.

The third and last day offered 6 breakouts and a fire hose of lessons from implementations and discussions of financial hurdles, fleet travel, the "greening" of the supply chain, pros/cons of buying offsets, and goal setting gamesmanship. A few highlights:

Real ROI and GHG Reduction is possible: Pepsi-Co/Frito Lay (FL) case study
FL had leadership role within PepsiCo, leading early efforts and joining CL in 2004. EHS initaitives and single division efforts have been surpassed by corporate-wide initiatives and full integration into strategy and operations. "Sustainability is one of more important business imperatives,” per Indra Nooyi, PepsiCo CEO. PepsiCo weaves sustainability throughout supply chain, yet still demands ROI. ($55mm has been saved already). Historic emphasis on compliance transformed sustainability. Success stories of re-claiming water in potatoes used for chips (potatoes are 90% water, and historically chip processing lines were massing consumers of water). PepsiCo is very product of its sustainability leadership and recently made the largest REC purchase ever(a purchase of 1.1 billion kilowatt-hours), valuting it to the top of the EPA's Top 25 Green Partner List (displacing current leader Wells Fargo, with 500mm KW purchase)

Solid IRR Exists for GHG Projects
ROI for GHG projects based on expanding existing initiatives and clearly capturing benefits and costs. Good breakout session with SC Johnson, Lockheed Martin and others. Discussion on pros and cons of bundling projects to get over IRR threshold, and importance of ensuring time frame of GHG benefits is matched correctly. SC Johnson shared results of survey of 1500 energy and EHS managers who expect 13% increase in energy costs this year.

McKinsey/Conference Board Report Issued
Jon Cretys from McKinsey presented highlights from a recent McKinsey/Conference Board report about creating a baseline of facts about GHG for policy and business planning analysis. McKinsey and others believe this to be the first, comprehensive attempt to quantify US GHG in a fact-based framework.

The conference mood was very energetic, upbeat and positive, unfortunately I don't have more time to share additional notes as I head to Denver for a red-eye flight.

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