Wal-Mart launches sustainability index - will rate its 60,000 suppliers based on answers to environmental, social questions

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Article
16 July 2009

Walmart's Sustainability Index: The Hype and the Reality

Author: Joel Makower, GreenBiz.com

Walmart has just unveiled its new Sustainability Index, a project that's been in the works for more than a year, but which is [now]...part of the public discourse... Like so many things related to both Walmart and sustainability, there is both more and less going on here than meets the eye... The Index will result from a set of 15 questions Walmart is asking of its 60,000 or so suppliers... The 15 questions are grouped into four buckets: energy and climate, material efficiency, natural resources, and "people and community." That last category...allows the company to demonstrate that its concern lies beyond environmental issues to the broader arena of sustainability, which includes social issues, though the five questions included in that bucket barely scratch the surface... As for the 15 questions...Taken together, they set a fairly middling bar... company is working to bring in other companies -- Best Buy, Costco, Kroger, and Target have been part of the conversation -- to adopt the Index, too... [also refers to Nike]

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Article
15 July 2009

At Wal-Mart, Labeling to Reflect Green Intent

Author: Stephanie Rosenbloom, New York Times

Wal-Mart Stores is on a mission to determine the social and environmental impact of every item it puts on its shelves. And it has recruited scholars, suppliers, and environmental groups to help it create an electronic indexing system to do that... “Nobody else could pull this off,” said Michelle Harvey at Environmental Defense Fund, one of the groups involved in the creation of the index... Joe Cavaliere, a senior vice president for customer development at Unilever, a big Wal-Mart supplier, called the indexing idea “a great move forward for the industry.”... Procter & Gamble said sharing the new sustainability index across the industry was important.

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Author: AFP

Le numéro un mondial de la distribution Wal-Mart demande à ses fournisseurs de chiffrer l'impact de leurs produits sur l'environnement et prévoit à terme d'apposer un label écologique sur tous ses produits en rayon, affirme mercredi le Wall Street Journal. Wal-Mart prévoit de demander à partir de jeudi à des milliers de fournisseurs de répondre d'ici au mois d'octobre à quinze questions destinées à mesurer l'impact sur l'environnement de leurs méthodes de production, de la consommation d'eau à l'émission de gaz carbonique... Cependant il est précisé qu'"il est probable que les consommateurs ne verront pas les premiers labels verts avant plusieurs années"...

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Article
13 July 2009

Wal-Mart Brazil Thinks Green

Author: Andrew Winston, HarvardBusiness.org

At the...Wal-Mart Sustainability Summit held in Sao Paolo, Brazil...Wal-Mart announced significant goals and mandates to tackle some of the thorniest environmental and social problems in the world...But here's where the event took a radical and historic turn. Wal-Mart Brazil managed to get twenty major suppliers onstage to sign an agreement to meet all of these goals (and more). On very short notice, the company corralled the presidents of the Brazilian operations for major corporations such as Cargill, Johnson & Johnson, Kimberly Clark, PepsiCo, P&G, Sara Lee, and Unilever. Twenty top executives stood on stage and signed these aggressive agreements.

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