Date: April 24, 2020
General Policy Statement
Helping people express themselves on their own piece of the Earth is at the core of why we do business. Caring for our natural resources like water, soil and plants not only ensures gardeners can continue to get out and make things grow today, but also helps secure our Company’s future. That’s why we have significantly increased our environmental commitments over the past several years and will continue to do so in the areas of product formulation and packaging, manufacturing operations and local community engagement.
ScottsMiracle-Gro is the leader in the lawn and garden industry. As such, we embrace our responsibility to innovate in ways that care for our environment, our people and the communities where we live and operate. Our senior leadership actively engages with environmental policies, risks and opportunities. In addition, our board works with senior leadership to provide oversight of environmental, social and governance (ESG) topics including climate change. Our environmental and social commitments are informed by the U.N.’s Sustainable Development Goals, particularly goals 2 (Zero Hunger), 6 (Clean Water and Sanitation), 8 (Decent Work and Economic Growth) and 12 (Responsible Consumption and Production).
For more than a century we have earned consumer trust by providing high-quality products that help gardeners grow thriving gardens and landscapes. This includes offering products that control pests and diseases and protect lawn, garden and landscape investments. All of these products are rigorously tested and comply with all regulatory guidelines for safe use around people, pets and the environment. As consumers seek to control pests in and around their homes, we work to ensure that our products can be used successfully and responsibly in a variety of settings. We understand that when it comes to safety, our consumers expect our products to be safe to use around people, pets and the environment. This is why we continuously review what active ingredients we choose to use.
We devote significant space on our corporate website to pesticide safety. We provide consumers with accurate, up-to-date information on our products, their active ingredients and our selection process.
We involve many partners, including leading academic universities and research centers, in testing and evaluating our products. We also engage with leading nonprofit organizations to solicit feedback on our products and processes and collaborate on environmental protection in the areas of water stewardship, greenspace development and pollinator protection.
Greenhouse gas emissions
Our Company continues to make strides in reducing energy consumption and resulting greenhouse gas emissions. In recent years, we increased efficiency by focusing on improvements to our distribution and warehousing network. We also saved an estimated 50,000 gallons of diesel per year through route optimizations and undertook energy-saving studies at our headquarters campus.
We have achieved packaging milestones by optimizing our packaging systems and substituting more environmentally-friendly materials—without compromising product quality and integrity.
We are relentless in our effort to find a product solution that is a win for the environment, consumers and business. Green waste recycling is an example of one solution, offering the opportunity to divert waste from landfills by incorporating it into beneficial products. We continue leading in utilizing green waste, incorporating billions of pounds annually of woody and green biomass into our products.
In the past several years we have continued moving aggressively to reduce our waste footprint, bringing several more zero-waste facilities online. Our plant facilities report increasing waste diversion rates using strategies ranging from plastics recycling to green waste incorporation into soil and mulch products.
We continue to prioritize proper handling of air emissions and have achieved steady reductions in air emissions at our largest manufacturing facility in Marysville over the past two decades. Process improvements and new, innovative technologies have enabled us to reduce air emissions at the source.
Protecting and Conserving Water
Water is a critical resource we strive to manage responsibly, whether through use of our products by consumers or within our manufacturing operations. In the past several years, we have introduced a range of products designed to help consumers create beautiful lawns and landscapes while reducing water waste and preventing runoff.
We have always reused and recycled water used in the manufacturing of our products. Water that is used to service manufacturing equipment is recycled until the water no longer has a service use. This process water, which generally contains between 1 and 4 percent of safe and useful plant nutrients, is removed from the recycling system and made available to local agricultural operations to grow corn, wheat, silage, beans and grasses.
Environmental improvement in our communities
We have a long-held commitment to environmental improvement, focusing external engagement in the areas of water and pollinator protection. Our water stewardship program comes to life through a nationwide National Partner Network of environmental nonprofits and research institutions. This network, representing a mix of national and local efforts, is working to protect and preserve some of America’s most threatened water bodies from harmful algal blooms. In addition, network members conduct research and educate the public on improving outdoor water efficiency and reducing water waste.
We partnered with the National Recreation and Park Association to launch Parks for Pollinators. This ongoing program supports pollinator habitat creation in local parks around the country, engages the public on the issues facing pollinators and helps them take action.