Jul 25 2011

Environmental Sustainability

Published by under Student blog entries

There is a company that has a great presence here in the Raleigh-Durham area. The company is SAS, who is located in Cary, North Carolina.
Julie Robinson has stated that “SAS’ overall commitment to promoting sustainable energy has made it a leader among businesses statewide and nationally” (Julie Robinson Marketing and Communications Director, North Carolina Sustainable Energy Association). They are taking action in educating and motivating in business strategies in all contact points of their company. SAS
utilizes many strategies in the quest for environmental sustainability. The 2009 initiatives include water conservation, energy conservation, SAS solar farm, green building and many more. This is a link to their 2009 initiatives
site. http://www.sas.com/company/csr/environment.html#s1=2


At the U.S. location in Austin Texas, SAS uses just three acres of the 94 acre campus, with the other portion of land left to be inhabited
by wildlife and many “endangered birds and spiders” (Biodiversity and Habitats).  At the company headquarters located at the Cary
campus, they have utilized just 80 acres of the approximate 900 acres of which it sits. This leaves 820 acres that are left naturally or enhanced for employee use. The company built a solar farm located at the Cary campus, which produced 1.7 million kWh of energy for the local area. This offsets approximately 1600 tons of carbon. They have left a minimal footprint in the forest by not cutting down trees for expansion. They have planted more trees than required and used steel piles for the solar panels eliminating the use of concrete for the bases. They employ sheep as the mechanism to maintain the grass at the solar farm. Jerry Williams said “that the environmental sustainability is a continuous effort that requires prudent use and preservation of our natural resources.”

SAS provides an overall assessment of the company’s energy uses. The chart depicts the annual usage per kWh along with a comparison
to the revenue and then provides how efficient they were per dollar earned with respect to kWh used. They have created SAS sustainable


management solutions in which  they are able to provide a platform for other
companies to follow their lead. They use electronic software delivery methods
for their customer and employee needs (Supply Chain). SAS software is used in
minimizing waste, generating energy and “[improving] production and delivery of
goods” (Eco Education).

With respect to their global footprint, SAS has created environmental governance that is named SAS Executive Sustainability Council. The council includes even the founder Jim Goodnight and co-founder John Sall. With these gentlemen taking part with the council it shows that the company truly believes “[their] environment sustainability program is simple part of the way we do business. It is the right thing to do, and it makes measureable business sense” (Jerry Williams SAS Environmental Sustainability Program Manager).

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