7 Questions for a Sustainability Professional: Nichole Jones-Dooley

Category Archive: TxN 20

  1. 7 Questions for a Sustainability Professional: Nichole Jones-Dooley

    Leave a Comment

    A native of Hot Wells, Texas, Mary Kay Ash is known as one of the original glass ceiling breakers for her iconic brand, Mary Kay. A true disruptor in business, Mary Kay’s mission since 1963 has been to enrich women’s lives and empower them with the opportunity to define their own futures. Today, Mary Kay operates in more than 35 countries and its Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) strategy weaves business excellence, product stewardship, responsible manufacturing, women’s empowerment, and social impact to their growth.

    Mary Kay’s commitment to intentional and sustainable initiatives to address the global challenges threatening future generations is thanks in part to the behind-the-scenes work of strategists like Nichole Jones-Dooley, Plant Manager, Richard R. Rogers Manufacturing and R&D Facility, Mary Kay.

    Nichole Jones-Dooley, Plant Manager, Mary Kay

    How would you explain the importance of ESG strategy to someone who wasn’t familiar with it?
    ESG strategy is vital because it represents a holistic approach to doing business that prioritizes not just financial gains but also positive impacts on the environment and society. At Mary Kay, it guides us in making decisions that are good for the planet and its people, ensuring a sustainable future for all while staying true to our core values. It’s about creating a balance between economic success and the well-being of our communities and the environment.

    When planning environmental sustainability targets, what do you use as a guide to set these goals and commitments? 
    In setting our environmental sustainability targets, we’re guided by a combination of successful industry models, stakeholder concerns, and our natural resource use. We align our goals with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, ensuring our efforts contribute to global priorities. Our approach is collaborative, involving key stakeholders to ensure our goals are ambitious yet achievable, reflecting our commitment to making a meaningful—and realistic—difference.

    What is the first step for implementing ESG strategy for a company looking to engage in environmental sustainability for the first time?
    The first step is understanding the intersection of your business operations with environmental, social, and governance factors. For Mary Kay, this meant assessing how we could leverage our influence for positive environmental change while empowering women and ensuring ethical governance. Starting with a commitment to sustainability that aligns with core company values is key, followed by establishing clear, measurable goals and integrating these into all aspects of the business.

    Mary Kay’s commitment to sustainability by the numbers:
    Mary Kay uses 100% biodegradable packing peanuts
    Mary Kay’s manufacturing centers are powered by 100% renewable energy
    Mary Kay’s global manufacturing facilities in the U.S. and China operate as zero landfill sites

    In 2023, what was your most interesting lesson learned in your work as a sustainability professional?
    The most interesting lesson was the power of collective action, especially the role women play in driving sustainability efforts. Our initiatives, from water stewardship to supporting female-led conservation projects, underscored how impactful partnerships and community-led actions can be. It reinforced the idea that when we empower women, we can accelerate progress towards sustainability goals.

    What component of working in environmental sustainability is your favorite and why? 
    Our commitment to water sustainability. Our manufacturing facility has a direct and tangible impact over this resource, with the ability to drive substantial improvement and conservation advancements through operational processes. It’s a fundamental resource that’s under increasing stress globally, and our efforts in water stewardship have shown tangible benefits. It’s gratifying to work on something so essential to life, knowing that every improvement contributes to the well-being of communities and ecosystems.

    When Mary Kay Ash said she wanted to change the world, this included protecting it for future generations. Because she embraced those values, Mary Kay has been making systematic changes across our operations and value chain for more than 60 years with the goal of becoming a more sustainable business. We’ve made significant progress—but there’s still work to be done and together we can accomplish our goals.

    – DEBORAH GIBBINS, CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER FOR MARY KAY

    From the eyes of an environmental sustainability professional, what makes a conservation project stand out? What can conservation projects do to make it easier to partner with them?
    A standout conservation project is one that combines innovative environmental solutions with social benefits, especially those that empower communities. Projects that facilitate partnerships by demonstrating tangible impacts, scalability, and inclusivity always stand out. Making it easier to partner involves clear communication of goals, transparency in operations, and showcasing how collaboration can amplify results.

    What sustainability goal are you most looking forward to working on in 2024?
    In 2024, I’m most looking forward to expanding our efforts in responsible water use and conservation. Building on our successes, we aim to implement more advanced water-saving technologies and practices across our operations. Enhancing our water stewardship not only reflects our commitment to environmental sustainability but also supports our broader goal of empowering women and communities through improved access to clean water.

    Texan by Nature’s vision is for every business and every Texan to participate in conservation, and for Texas to be a model of collaborative conservation for the world. 

    We’re grateful to Nichole, Mary Kay, and the many sustainability professionals and companies who are future-proofing their businesses and our state with operational innovations and conservation investments that advance environmental sustainability in their sectors and provide successful models for the globe to follow.

    Learn more about the annual TxN 20 program, which recognizes leadership in environmental sustainability in industry, by visiting the TxN 20 website, and keep an eye out for more insight from other sustainability professionals to come.

    More about Nichole Jones-Dooley

    Nichole holds Bachelor of Science degrees in Chemistry and Nuclear Medicine Technology. She has over 15 years of experience in Cosmetics manufacturing and Supply Chain Management. She began her career as a Chemist for L’Oréal USA at their manufacturing site in North Little Rock, AR. While there, she worked in multiple roles across Operations and Supply Chain including Manager of Industrial Quality, Manager of Packaging Operations, and Manager of Master Scheduling.

    In 2015, Nichole joined Mary Kay Inc. as Manager of Production Operations at the Dallas manufacturing site. During her tenure with the company, she served as Director of Operations and is currently Plant Manager for the site, overseeing all of Operations, Warehousing, and Site Engineering at the new Richard R. Rogers Manufacturing and R&D Facility in Lewisville, TX. Nichole is an active member of the Board of the Lewisville Chamber of Commerce as well as a member of the Board of Trustees for Medical City Lewisville.

  2. Texan by Nature 20: Recognizing Business in Conservation

    Leave a Comment

    Texan by Nature exists to advance conservation and we have a vision that every single business, every single Texan will participate in conservation – all 30 million of us representing a 1.9 trillion dollar GDP. We believe that conservation is good business and that we must build on best practices and innovation to realize the nature-filled, healthy, and prosperous future we envision. In order to build, we must first recognize and understand leading actions and opportunities.

    The Texan by Nature 20 was launched due to lack of recognition and best practice sharing across industry. In 2018 and 2019, we hosted roundtables across the state of Texas and learned about impactful action that wasn’t being broadly shared. As we facilitated discussion, we witnessed surprise and interest as leaders from a variety of industries shared their journeys, lessons learned, and thoughts on the future of conservation and sustainability. 

    We listened as they talked about the lack of recognition for action led by industry and the shortage of sharing between industries. As we reflected on these discussions, the Texan by Nature 20 was developed – an annual recognition of the best conservation coming from industry, recognizing efforts from big and small institutions across 12 industries.

    The selection and naming of the Texan by Nature 20 each year is an exciting and educational time. As we research the latest reports and activity, we see trends, innovation, improvement, interesting partnerships, and new commitments. We see opportunities to recognize practices that could change industry and our relationship with our natural resources moving forward.
    In 2023, we found that 82% of the top 70 companies in Texas made environmental sustainability values an integral part of their mission. Many companies went beyond words, actively demonstrating their commitments by leveraging their own expertise to support sustainable initiatives. We found data-backed examples of businesses who see the value in natural resource efficiency as an opportunity to positively impact operating expenses and the planet.

    We’re excited to see the trends, standout practices, and opportunities, in addition to honoring the best in conservation and sustainability coming from industry in 2024.

    Data submissions for the 2024 Texan by Nature 20 are open now – June 7, 2024.

    To select the TxN 20, Texan by Nature aggregates publicly available data with self-submitted information yielding an initial list of 2,000+ publicly traded and private companies within 12 industry sectors. The data is evaluated on a point-based scoring matrix of key criteria such as the use of green energy, spend on conservation, operational innovation, and more. A cross-industry selection committee then ranks approximately 60 finalists to determine the final list of honorees.

    Explore how the 2023 TxN 20 honorees are committing to conservation – Download the 2023 TxN 20 Industry Report.

    We hope this report acts as a catalyst for inspiration to explore conservation as a vital component of not just sustainability strategy, but operational strategy moving forward. We believe the future lies in this strategic growth and in the types of partnerships, programs, and projects executed by the Texan by Nature 20 honorees. 

    If you are inspired by a particular project or organization and would like to know more, please reach out to our team so that we can connect you with the right partner.

    Thank you for being on this conservation journey with us.

  3. 7 Questions for a Sustainability Professional, Sandra Montalbo — Overland Partners

    Leave a Comment

    Texan by Nature’s network of business members is essential to achieving our mission of advancing conservation, and the sustainability professionals in these organizations are important allies in connecting industry with conservation. Professionals such as Sandra Montalbo, Design Performance Manager at Overland Partners, are transforming communities and organizations from within through raising Environmental, Social, and Government (ESG) actions. Overland Partners was a 2022 TxN 20 honoree for their leadership in sustainable architectural design.

    A credentialed LEED AP BD+C expert, Sandra Montalbo champions sustainable design and building certifications such as LEED, meaning the building’s design and operation reach high standards of natural resource conservation. She is also a WELL Accredited Professional (AP), and expert in the WELL Building Standard, a performance-based building and operations certification that requires third-party auditing and performance verification, and has received a Living Future Accreditation

    1. How would you explain the importance of ESG strategy to someone who wasn’t familiar with it?

    ESG stands for Environmental, Social, and Governance. It’s a way for the public, i.e., investors, stakeholders, and employees, to evaluate an organization. The term ESG is similar to the concept of sustainability in that it prioritizes environmental and social impacts. However, ESG prioritizes governance over economics. Governance is an essential component of ESG which covers corporate structure, management, responsibility, accountability, data protection, etc.

    ESG serves as a gut check for organizations to evaluate whether their actions are aligned with their values. In addition, ESG can help investors and can be viewed as an indicator of an organization’s long-term success. While ESG is a helpful evaluation framework, financial considerations and profitability ultimately track higher with investors.

    2. When planning environmental sustainability targets, what do you use as a guide to set these goals and commitments? (i.e. successful industry models, stakeholder concern, natural resource use?)

    At Overland Partners, we are guided and inspired by our mission to positively influence the world through the practice of architecture. We are committed to being good stewards of the Earth. It’s a core value and an important part of our firm culture. Stewardship is one of the main reasons we signed on to the 2030 Commitment in 2014. The 2030 Commitment is a carbon-reduction framework led by The American Institute of Architects (AIA) to reduce the carbon emissions associated with buildings. It sets incremental goals toward carbon neutrality for all new construction by 2030 and a 20% reduction in carbon emissions for major renovations.

    Our 2030 strategy is integrating low-carbon design strategies and analysis. Our designers understand the environmental impact and carbon emissions associated with the material production, construction, operation, and, ultimately, deconstruction of buildings. Reducing the embodied carbon in our designs requires that we conduct Life-Cycle Analyses (LCA) and energy analyses on projects. LCAs help us evaluate design options and require our designers to research lower-carbon intensive and low VOC materials, right-sizing buildings, and pushing function to outdoor unairconditioned, shaded spaces. Energy analyses help us optimize our buildings’ performance by evaluating optimal massing, orientation, wall assemblies, window-to-wall ratio, etc.

    The 2030 Commitment also requires that firms develop and maintain a Sustainability Action Plan, which has helped us establish incremental goals toward carbon-neutral operations.

    3. What is the first step for implementing ESG strategy for a company looking to engage in environmental sustainability for the first time?

    In my opinion, sustainability and ESG have gained momentum with the Inflation Reduction Act which is encouraging to me as a sustainability professional.

    Thinking globally, I’d start with the United Nations Sustainable Develop Goals (SDG). This can help organizations identify the themes that align with their goals and values. I’d then research third-party certifications/reporting that can help your organization identify focus areas and metrics by which to track and evaluate progress. On a national level, there are resources and organizations that advocate for transparency and accountability, depending on your industry, such as ISO Standards for Environmental Management, Green Business Bureau, and B Corp to name a few.

    On a state level, I’d align myself with organizations with similar values, for example, the work Texan by Nature is doing to develop initiatives around education, advocacy, and certifications help advance collaboration between businesses and conservation. Diving into the Texan by Nature 20is a great place to start for Texas-based companies and organizations interested in taking actionable steps towards positive, holistic, sustainable impact.

    For Overland, it starts with our mission, vision, and values and putting them into action for positive, measurable outcomes for the people, places, projects, and communities we serve. Our pledge to The 2030 Commitment, is a great framework for sustainable design and operation, and the JUST label, which promotes organizational transparency through the lens of Diversity & Inclusion, Equity, Employee Health, Employee Benefits, Stewardship, and Purchasing & Supply Chain. These two tools require intensive metric-based evaluations of our project designs and our organization. Every year, we get a snapshot of our performance at a moment of time. The rigor of tracking and evaluating helps ensure we are making progress toward our organizational goals. They force accountability and offer us a path to better performance.

    We literally pin our progress/shortcomings on the wall and use this as motivation for continuous improvement and performance moving forward.

    The Binational River Conservation Project champions river restoration while also celebrating shared culture and history.

    4. In 2022, what was your most interesting lesson learned in your work as a sustainability professional?

    I was super fortunate to begin my architectural career as a research fellow for the AIA’s Committee on the Environment (COTE). I traveled all over the United States from San Antonio to Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Emeryville, Los Angeles, Kansas City, and Philadelphia. I interviewed 100 architectural professionals at ten high-performance firms that had won the most COTE Top Ten Awards. I then spent a year writing The Habits of High-Performance Firms with the late and forever inspiring Lance Hosey. We evaluated high-performance firms’ design approach, sustainability goals, hiring practices, analysis software, organizational structure, firm culture, and driving ethos.

    The biggest takeaway, for me, was that they cared. These architects, designers, and interns cared so much about doing right by the planet that it carried them through all the challenges of budget, schedules, building code requirements, and deadlines. It’s the reason I chose Overland Partners. I’m so blessed to work with such amazingly talented, hard-working, and dedicated professionals committed to the cause, from our interns to our principals.

    5. What component of working in environmental sustainability is your favorite and why? (i.e. water, wildlife, biodiversity, operational innovation, waste diversion, land, energy etc.)

    At Overland, we are very fortunate to collaborate with aspirational clients who challenge and inspire us. For me, every day is an opportunity to be a force for good in the world and help deliver on our brand promise of “Unlocking the Embedded Potential™” for our clients by sharing knowledge, finding innovative solutions to complex problems, and working closely with my talented colleagues to push our solutions beyond code requirements and what’s immediately apparent… a chance to design healthy spaces that care for the Earth and elevate the well-being for all who experience the places we create. It is so incredibly fun and rewarding to bring our clients and stakeholders into the design process and see the original thinking that evolves. These ideas, when integrated into the design of buildings, have contributed to transformational architecture with far-reaching influence from setting the standards for USGBC’s LEED and Sustainable SITES rating systems to “first-of-their-kind” projects such as the first net-positive restaurant in the world; first hydroponic gardens in a wildlife park; first Ethylene Tetrafluoroethylene (ETFE) pillows that serve as the roof for a historic renovation; and first children’s nature center for the prevention and treatment of child abuse to name a few.

    We are able to bring these amazing projects to fruition by staying true to our purpose and promise, and leaning into The Human HandprintTM, the methodology we developed to guide our approach to intentional design and deliver on our promise of holistic, sustainable design with measurable human transformation.

    6. From the eyes of an environmental sustainability professional, what makes a conservation project stand out? What can conservation projects do to make it easier to partner with them?

    At this point, all conservation efforts should be a standout. We are at a critical time where every effort to care for the Earth, with all its resources and diverse species, helps move the needle towards a healthier, more sustainable world.  We are in the beginning of the sixth mass extinction. While that may sound dire to some, humans can also positively influence the trajectory of the climate crisis. Sustainability, stewardship and conservation seem overwhelming, but making positive changes within one’s own sphere of influence can generate positive momentum and outcomes.

    That being said, Overland’s work, in collaboration with Able City, on the Binational River Conservation Project is hugely inspiring to me. This project is an excellent example of community-informed design. This conservation project focuses on the critical role of the Rio Grande/Rio Bravo, a shared resource that sustains life for approximately 6 million people. Cleaning up the river and restoring the riparian ecosystem on both sides of the U.S./Mexico border is essential to the region’s future and serves as a prototype project for border communities worldwide. With conservation as the driver, this project is an opportunity to reimagine the symbiotic relationship between the two Laredos – Nuevo Laredo, Mexico and Laredo, Texas, connecting people, connecting people to nature, preserving the natural environment, promoting cultural bonds, celebrating our shared history, and all of this while addressing immigration issues, national security, and catalyzing economic growth.

    Conservation organizations can leverage social media and YouTube and create meaningful content that brings awareness to conservation issues. Asking for donations and time is important, but it starts with awareness and connection. Conservation messaging should be provocative and compelling while leaving space for the audience to connect and contribute.

    7. What sustainability goal are you most looking forward to working on in 2023?

    I’m most excited to see Overland’s full adoption of The Human Handprint™ App. The Human Handprint™ as a design methodology is not new to the firm. Aspects of The Human Handprint™ have been integral to how we work with clients, engage stakeholders, think about place, and approach sustainable design over decades of experience. While there are many sustainability certifications across the architecture, engineering, and construction industry for measuring building performance and occupant comfort, we design for people and communities.  To address this need, we took the initiative to develop our own system that puts people at the center of design and formalized The Human Handprint™ methodology in 2015. The methodology has evolved since then and we are now on The Human Handprint version 3.  The Human Handprint™ has created a continuous cycle of strategic problem-solving, learnings, and best practices to inform better design decision-making across all market sectors. Since we’re always striving to innovate and work smarter, we built an app to collect project data which feeds into a data visualization dashboard, integrating sustainability, design performance, and measurable human outcomes into one singular, powerful platform. Our Overland design teams are already seeing results when it comes to serving our clients and to elevating design decision-making. It has significantly streamlined our internal project performance tracking and reporting and is building fidelity into our process. The Human Handprint™ App is our firm commitment to people and the planet, creating positive, measurable human transformations.

    Texan by Nature’s vision is for every business, every Texan to participate in conservation and for Texas to be a model of collaborative conservation for the world.

    We’re grateful to Sandra, Overland Partners, and the many sustainability professionals and companies who are future-proofing their businesses and our state with operational innovations and conservation investments that advance environmental sustainability in their sectors and provide successful models for the globe to follow. Learn more about the annual TxN 20 program, which recognizes leadership in environmental sustainability in industry, by visiting the TxN 20 website, and keep an eye out for more insight from other sustainability professionals to come.

    More About Sandra Montalbo
    Sandra Montalbo, LEED AP BD+C, LFA, WELL AP

    Sandra Montalbo is passionate about sustainability. Architecture has provided her the platform to create positive change in the natural and built environment. In 2015, she received the Architectural Research Consortium Center’s (ARCC) King Student Medal for her research, “Architectural Design and Behavioral Effects in the Context of Sustainability.” In 2016, she was selected as the COTE Scholar with AIA National in Washington, D.C. In 2017, Sandra was the lead researcher and primary author of “The Habits of High-Performance Firms.” In 2018, she was awarded the AIA San Antonio’s Rising Star Award and served on the NCARB Experience and Advisory Committee.

    Sandra represented the AIA San Antonio on the City of San Antonio’s Energy & Building’s Technical Working Group to develop The City of San Antonio’s Climate Action and Adaptation Plan (CAAP) and served on the USGBC South Texas Regional Council. In 2019, she was awarded the Texas Society of Architects Associate Member of the Year Award, UTSA’s CACP – Distinguished Alumni Award, and a recipient of the AIA National’s 2019 Jason Pettigrew Scholarship. In 2020, she was recognized by the Design Future’s Council as 2022 Emerging Leader at the Annual Leadership Summit “The Future of Environmental Responsibility.” Sandra is currently Overland’s Design Performance Manager and is also a PhD student in the Land Use Planning Management and Design (LPMD) program at Texas Tech University.

  4. TxN 20 Highlights — Transportation

    Leave a Comment

     

    2022 TxN 20: Texan-led leadership in conservation for a sustainable future in Transportation.

    The Texan by Nature team is excited to present the fourth annual list of Texan by Nature 20 (TxN 20) Honorees. TxN 20 recognizes outstanding work in conservation and sustainability from Texas-based businesses.

    It’s an opportunity to showcase innovation, commitment to conservation, and best practices from the industries that keep Texas running: Agriculture, Architecture, Financial Services, Food, Beverage, & Grocery, Technology, Energy, Healthcare, Municipal Services, Retail, Transportation, and Construction & Manufacturing. 

    Meet the 2022 TxN 20  Honorees leading sustainability in transportation: Cap Metro and DFW Airport.

    12 electric buses purchased in 2021— 2022 Honoree Cap Metro

    Who is Cap Metro?

    Cap Metro is Austin’s regional public transportation provider. CapMetro connects people, jobs and communities by providing quality transportation choices to Central Texas. Created in accordance with Chapter 451 of the Texas Transportation Code, CapMetro was established by a voter referendum on Jan. 19, 1985. The agency is funded in part by a 1 percent sales tax levied by members of its service area.

    How are they setting the standard?

    In the social sector, Cap Metro partnered with H-E-B, Central Texas Food Bank to deploy Help-at-Home kits to elderly and disabled citizens across Austin, dedicating 300-400 service hours a week to the Help-at-Home Kits program. 

    CapMetro used its resources to help provide meals to the hungry in our regions, providing access to basic food necessities without the risks of COVID.

    CapMetro uses 97% renewable energy purchased from Texas wind farms totaling around 8.7 million kilowatt hours of energy. With 12 new electric buses purchased in 2021, CapMetro will increase to 200 electric buses by 2026 to reduce its overall fleet greenhouse gas emissions. 100% of CapMetro’s electricity from Austin Energy is renewable (wind and solar) Green Choice electricity. 

    Powered by 100% renewable electricity from Texas wind farms — 2022 Honoree DFW Airport

    Who is DFW Airport?

    Today, Dallas Fort Worth International (DFW) Airport warmly welcomes more than 73 million customers along their journey every year, elevating DFW to a status as one of the most frequently visited super-hub airports in the world. Centered between its owner cities of Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas, DFW Airport also serves as a major economic generator for the North Texas region, producing over $37 billion in economic impact each year by connecting people through business and leisure travel.

    How are they setting the standard?

    2,000 DFW employees work to advance ESG initiatives, forming strategic partnerships with several prominent external entities, including the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Coca-Cola, Nestle, the University of North Texas, Avfuel Corporation, and the Dallas Fort Worth Clean Cities Coalition, to advance innovative approaches to sustainability. Additionally, DFW is powered by 100% renewable electricity from Texas wind farms, directly benefiting local economies. As a result, since 2010, the Texas electric grid (ERCOT) has increased from 8% renewables to over 20%. Waste collected from DFW’s food waste program is transported to local farms and compost facilities, resulting in 9 tons of food waste diverted from landfills since 2021.

    15 concessionaires from two terminals have been onboarded to the composting program, and the Airport anticipates expanding the program to additional concessions locations in the coming months. 

    Why Forward Thinking Leaders in Transportation Matter

    According to the EPA, the Transportation sector contributes more to overall U.S. greenhouse gas emissions than any other sector, producing 27% of global emissions in 2020. Since bringing down emissions and getting from point A to point B are musts in the modern world, innovation in transportation is critical to keep a prosperous economy and protect the environment. Sustainability leaders like CapMetro and DFW Airport are keeping the world connected and protected.   

    How TxN20 Honorees Are Selected Each Year

    To select the 2022 TxN 20 Honorees, the TxN Team evaluated submissions and conducted independent research across 2,000+ of Texas’ publicly traded and private companies in 12 key industry sectors. 

    All companies were evaluated on a 17-point scoring system, from which the top 60 highest-scoring companies moved on to the final round of TxN 20. A selection committee of top industry leaders and experts was then formed to evaluate the top 60 companies and select the final 20 businesses recognized as TxN 20 Honorees.

    Honorable Mentions: Standouts in Sustainability

    In addition to this year’s TxN 20 honorees, here are three industry standouts for best practices in conservation and sustainability coming from companies across the agriculture industry.

    Industry Innovator: Kirby Corporation

    The Houston-based Kirby Corporation operates as the premier tank barge operator in the United States, transporting bulk liquid products throughout all three U.S. Coasts and more. In 2020, they transported 423.4 million barrels of cargo without a spill in the water. Additionally, by 2024, they estimate a 25% reduction of marine CO2 emissions per barrel of capacity. 

    Industry Innovator: Union Pacific

    The Omaha-based Union Pacific delivers integral goods to families and businesses every day with efficiency and reliability. In 2021, they introduced Genset and Green Goat locomotives for service in California, Texas and Chicago, with fuel-savings of more than 20% compared to other diesel locomotives in similar use. Additionally, PSR efforts allowed them to reduce the size of their locomotive fleet, effectively retiring their least-efficient units.

    Industry Innovator: XPO Logistics

    The Greenwich-based XPO Logistics is a top ten global provider of transportation and logistic services. In 2021, they launched a new rail freight service in partnership with Irish Rail to provide a greener, more efficient path to transport goods between Western and Southeast Ireland. Additionally, in European locations, they have installed intelligent LED lighting in 14 more locations, in total covering 55% of their square footage. 

    Get Involved:

    Is your company at the forefront of sustainability in Texas? Share your work with Texan by Nature by submitting Environmental, Social, Governance (ESG) data that showcases how your company benefits people, prosperity, and natural resources to programs@texanbynature.org.

    To be considered for the official TxN 20 list, companies must:

    • Have operations and employees based in Texas;
    • Share a demonstrated commitment to conservation & sustainability;
    • Showcase tangible efforts, impact, and data in conservation;
    • NOT be a conservation-based nonprofit (501c3).
  5. TxN 20 Highlights — Municipal Services

    Leave a Comment

    2022 TxN 20: Texan-led leadership in conservation for a sustainable future in Municipal Services.

    The Texan by Nature team is excited to present the fourth annual list of Texan by Nature 20 (TxN 20) Honorees. TxN 20 recognizes outstanding work in conservation and sustainability from Texas-based businesses.

    It’s an opportunity to showcase innovation, commitment to conservation, and best practices from the industries keep Texas running: Agriculture, Architecture, Financial Services, Food, Beverage, & Grocery,Technology, Energy, Healthcare, Municipal Services, Retail, Transportation, and Construction & Manufacturing. 

    Meet the 2022 TxN 20  Honorees leading sustainability in Municipal Services: City of Austin Parks and Recreation Department (PARD).

    $1.2 million invested in expanding recycling to parks citywide2022 Honoree City of Austin Parks and Recreation Department

    Who is the City of Austin Parks and Recreation Department?

    The Austin Parks and Recreation Department has been the steward of the City of Austin’s public lands since 1928.  As such, they protect and maintain parkland and urban forest. Austin PARD preserve trails, and offer a variety of sports, recreation, educational enrichment, arts programs, cultural opportunities, nature and aquatic activities.

    How the City of Austin Parks and Recreation Department sets the standard

    Austin PARD demonstrates that individual efforts can make a big impact: two staff members of the Austin Nature and Science Center sheltered at the center during Winter Storm Uri to care for the wildlife. Because of their dedication, 100 animals were protected during Winter Storm Uri and suffered no significant impacts due to the storm or stress. From wildlife to waste disposal, Austin Parks and Recreation Department’s  Recycling Implementation Plan has invested $1.2 million in expanding recycling to parks citywide by installing landfill and recycling receptacles as paired units on concrete pads with two-way dome lids and clear labels in English and Spanish. PARD Forestry recycles all debris from its tree maintenance program. Once a month, Austin residents can take home free logs from trees that have been removed from the parkland for safety reasons resulting in 980 tons of brush and 80 tons of wood recycled annually.

    Why Forward Thinking Leaders in Municipal Services Matter

    Leadership in environmental sustainability from Municipal Services makes it possible to take care of the places we call home. With a state recycling rate of 22%, below the national average, the efforts of the City of Austin PARD to expand recycling are essential to close the gap in responsible waste disposal in Texas. Austin PARD’s innovative stewardship of urban forests, which provide ecosystem services like erosion control and improved air quality, engages the community with circularity by offering free firewood from landscape management.

    How TxN20 Honorees Are Selected Each Year

    To select the 2022 TxN 20 Honorees, the TxN Team evaluated submissions and conducted independent research across 2,000+ of Texas’ publicly traded and private companies in 12 key industry sectors. 

    All companies were evaluated on a 17-point scoring system, from which the top 60 highest-scoring companies moved on to the final round of TxN 20. A selection committee of top industry leaders and experts was then formed to evaluate the top 60 companies and select the final 20 businesses recognized as TxN 20 Honorees.

    Honorable Mentions: Standouts in Sustainability

    In addition to this year’s TxN 20 Honorees, here are three industry standouts for best practices in conservation and sustainability coming from companies across the agriculture industry.

    Industry Innovator: Waste Connections

    Waste Connections is a waste disposal company that offers recycling and trash pickup as well as special and hazardous waste disposal. The company has demonstrated its commitment to sustainability by outlining a 15 year sustainability target plan and allocating $500 million to achieve the plan’s goals. Waste Connections has also installed 50 gas recovery systems to capture methane gas from landfills, reducing air pollution, and 28 of those gas recovery systems power homes and businesses in the surrounding areas.  

    Industry Innovator: City of San Marcos

    The City of San Marcos is known for its natural beauty and resources, which are stewarded by city management. The City of San Marcos offers its citizens incentives to be more sustainable, including rebates for solar energy and rainwater harvesting. San Marcos also manages the Community Forestry Program, which maintains and restores urban forest ecosystems on over 2004 acres.  

    Industry Innovator: Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center

    Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center in San Antonio sets a statewide example by incorporating sustainability into all their event operations. Trash bags at the convention center are 100% biodegradable and recycling bags are 100% recyclable. The center also uses only Green Seal Certified cleaning products and has invested in energy efficiency by installing solar thermal film on all windows.

    Get Involved:

    Is your company at the forefront of sustainability in Texas? Share your work with Texan by Nature by submitting Environmental, Social, Governance (ESG) data that showcases how your company benefits people, prosperity, and natural resources to programs@texanbynature.org.

    To be considered for the official TxN 20 list, companies must:

    • Have operations and employees based in Texas;
    • Share a demonstrated commitment to conservation & sustainability;
    • Showcase tangible efforts, impact, and data in conservation;
    • NOT be a conservation-based nonprofit (501c3).
  6. TxN 20 Highlights — Retail

    Leave a Comment

     

    2022 TxN 20: Texan-led leadership in conservation for a sustainable future in Retail.

    The Texan by Nature team is excited to present the fourth annual list of Texan by Nature 20 (TxN 20) Honorees. TxN 20 recognizes outstanding work in conservation and sustainability from Texas-based businesses.

    It’s an opportunity to showcase innovation, commitment to conservation, and best practices from the industries keep Texas running: Agriculture, Architecture, Financial Services, Food, Beverage, & Grocery,Technology, Energy, Healthcare, Municipal Services, Retail, Transportation, and Construction & Manufacturing. Meet the 2022 TxN 20 Honoree leading sustainability in Retail: Yeti.

    6,000 pounds of debris from the Colorado River – 2022 Honoree Yeti

    Who is Yeti?

    In 2006, we founded YETI Coolers with a simple mission: build the cooler we’d use every day if it existed. One that was built for the serious outdoor enthusiast rather than for the mass-discount retailers. One that could take the abuse we knew we’d put it through out in the field and on the water. One that simply wouldn’t break.

    How Yeti sets the standard

    YETIzens, Yeti employees, joined Austin FC and the Colorado River Alliance to volunteer 100+ hours to remove 6,000 pounds of debris from the Colorado River and the surrounding parks in Austin. This makes the river a more enjoyable spot for paddle boarding and kayaking and helps reduce the impact of plastic pollution in this important aquatic ecosystem. YETI’s partnership with Ducks Unlimited aids in the protection of a critical wintering habitat for a massive percentage of North America’s migrating waterfowl species from the pressure of environmental degradation and climate change. A portion of YETI’s annual sponsorship is designated for Ducks Unlimited’s Gulf Coast Initiative, aimed at protecting waterfowl habitats in YETI’s own backyard, contributing $1 million + to community organizations and foundations working on conservation and representation in the WILD. 

    Additionally, since launching hats with NetPlus® materials, YETI has helped divert 17,700 pounds of fishing net waste and achieved an estimated 50% reduction in the carbon footprint of their hat brim plastic compared to using virgin plastic. In 2020, YETI diverted 298,000 pounds of material from landfill and another 157,000 pounds of material through July 2021.

    Why Forward Thinking Leaders in Retail Matter

    Worldwide, the Retail industry contributes 25% of total greenhouse emissions. Scope 3 emissions, the ones companies are indirectly responsible for (i.e.  product disposal by the consumer) make up a large portion of most retailers’ carbon footprints. By making sturdy products designed to last far beyond single use, Yeti is doing their part to reduce product waste and bring down Scope 3 emissions in retail. 

    How TxN20 Honorees Are Selected Each Year

    To select the 2022 TxN 20 Honorees, the TxN Team evaluated submissions and conducted independent research across 2,000+ of Texas’ publicly traded and private companies in 12 key industry sectors. 

    All companies were evaluated on a 17-point scoring system, from which the top 60 highest-scoring companies moved on to the final round of TxN 20. A selection committee of top industry leaders and experts was then formed to evaluate the top 60 companies and select the final 20 businesses recognized as TxN 20 Honorees.

    Honorable Mentions: Standouts in Sustainability

    In addition to this year’s TxN 20 honorees, here are three industry standouts for best practices in conservation and sustainability coming from companies across the agriculture industry.

    Industry Innovator: Walmart

    The Bentonville-based Walmart helps people around the world save money and live better anywhere, from in their retail stores to through their mobile devices. In 2021, they diverted 81% of waste from landfills and incinerators globally. Additionally, they have committed to help protect, manage or restore at least 50 million acres of land and 1 million square miles of ocean by 2030

    Industry Innovator: Neiman Marcus

    The Dallas-based Neiman Marcus is a luxury retailer offering merchandise and service that cater to the needs of the affluent customer. In 2021, they extended the useful life of over 350,000 luxury items through circular services. Additionally, they reduced Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions by 23%

    Industry Innovator: Home Depot

    The Atlanta-based Home Depot revolutionizes the definition of “hardware store” by providing retail and home improvement services. In 2020, they helped reduce customers’ greenhouse gas emissions by 20 million metric tons. Additionally, they helped reduce their consumers’ water use by 250 billion gallons

    Get Involved:

    Is your company at the forefront of sustainability in Texas? Share your work with Texan by Nature by submitting Environmental, Social, Governance (ESG) data that showcases how your company benefits people, prosperity, and natural resources to programs@texanbynature.org.

    To be considered for the official TxN 20 list, companies must:

    • Have operations and employees based in Texas;
    • Share a demonstrated commitment to conservation & sustainability;
    • Showcase tangible efforts, impact, and data in conservation;
    • NOT be a conservation-based nonprofit (501c3).
  7. TxN20 Industry Highlights — Healthcare

    Leave a Comment

    2022 TxN 20: Texan-led leadership in conservation for a sustainable future in Healthcare.

    The Texan by Nature team is excited to present the fourth annual list of Texan by Nature 20 (TxN 20) Honorees. TxN 20 recognizes outstanding work in conservation and sustainability from Texas-based businesses.

    It’s an opportunity to showcase innovation, commitment to conservation, and best practices from the industries that keep Texas running: Agriculture, Architecture, Financial Services, Food, Beverage, & Grocery, Technology, Energy, Healthcare, Municipal Services, Retail, Transportation, and Construction & Manufacturing. 

    Providing Care for Our Environment, the Texas Company Diverting 9,000 lbs of Single-Use Medical Devices – 2022 Honoree: Texas Health Resources

    Who is Texas Health Resources?

    Texas Health Resources is a large Arlington-headquartered health services system that serves much of North Texas and is one of the biggest providers in the country. Their impact extends far beyond human health toward the environment that supports us. Not only did they divert 9,000 pounds of single-use medical devices from landfills, but Texas Health Resources recycled 2 million pounds of materials, such as cardboard, paper, and plastics, and saved 4.1 million kilowatts of energy. 

    The Texas Health Resources Community is able to operate through a variety of roles, including 370 employees that are involved in conservation. Employees in Engineering, Plant Operations, Facilities Management, and Supply Chain Management – work in roles that are tied to the conservation of natural resources. Approximately 20% of those employees have roles involving significant investment in and oversight of building automation systems and other efficiency-related technologies, processes, sourcing, products, and usages.

    Outside of their organization, Texas Health’s Blue Zones Project® Fort Worth (BZP) works with the city of Fort Worth, area school districts, and numerous other city and county governments and community partners to increase health and well-being through a multitude of efforts. From instituting policies that promote well-being to encouraging local schools, businesses, restaurants, and community leaders to adopt healthy behaviors.

    Why Forward-Thinking Leaders in Healthcare Matter

    Healthcare matters for the millions of Texans who rely on the industry to provide quality care and support for themselves and their loved ones. In Texas, eight of the 25 largest employers are related to the medical industry as a hospital or place of research. The Dallas-Fort Worth area has a healthcare industry valued at $52 billion and in San Antonio, one out of every six Texans is employed in healthcare-related jobs and careers. These providers recognize the benefits of a healthy environment on community health and lead the way in advancing conservation through greater resource efficiency and sustainable supply chain strategy while maintaining high-quality care. 

    How TxN20 Honorees Are Selected Each Year

    To select the 2022 TxN 20 Honorees, the TxN Team evaluated submissions and conducted independent research across 2,000+ of Texas’ publicly traded and private companies in 12 key industry sectors. 

    All companies were evaluated on a 17-point scoring system, from which the top 60 highest-scoring companies moved on to the final round of TxN 20. A selection committee of top industry leaders and experts was then formed to evaluate the top 60 companies and select the final 20 businesses recognized as TxN 20 Honorees.

    Honorable Mentions: Standouts in Sustainability

    In addition to this year’s TxN 20 honorees, here are three industry standouts for best practices in conservation and sustainability coming from companies across the agriculture industry.

    Industry Innovator: Alcon

    The American-Swiss company Alcon specializes in eye care products that help improve their clients’ vision. In 2020, they certified ~95% of manufacturing sites to ISO 14001, making it a standardized environmental management system, with a goal of 100% certification in 2021. Alcon implemented a Zero Manufacturing Waste policy, with ~60% of sites 100% landfill-free for non-hazardous waste disposal. 

    Industry Innovator: AmerisourceBergen

    The Pennsylvania-based AmerisourceBergen strives to provide pharmaceutical products, value-driving services, and business solutions that improve access to care. In 2021, they committed to setting a science-based target in line with the Science Based Target initiative (SBTi) guidance. They reduced greenhouse gas emissions by using hybrid vans to deliver medicines and medical products to Alliance Healthcare customers as well as adding an electric vehicle to their animal health fleet in the U.K. 

    Industry Innovator: Johnson & Johnson

    The New Brunswick-based Johnson & Johnson believes that good health is the foundation of vibrant lives which is why its mission is to keep people healthy at every stage of life. In 2021, they had a 34% reduction in CO2 emissions in 2016. Johnson & Johnson also added on-site solar arrays at their facilities in China, Columbia, South Africa, and Thailand. 

    Get Involved:

    Is your company at the forefront of sustainability in Texas? Share your work with Texan by Nature by submitting Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) data that showcases how your company benefits people, prosperity, and natural resources to programs@texanbynature.org.

    To be considered for the official TxN 20 list, companies must:

    • Have operations and employees based in Texas;
    • Share a demonstrated commitment to conservation & sustainability;
    • Showcase tangible efforts, impact, and data in conservation;
    • NOT be a conservation-based nonprofit (501c3).
  8. TxN 20 Highlights — Energy Industry

    Leave a Comment

    2022 TxN 20: Texan-led leadership in conservation for a sustainable future in Energy.

    The Texan by Nature team is excited to present the fourth annual list of Texan by Nature 20 (TxN 20) Honorees. TxN 20 recognizes outstanding work in conservation and sustainability from Texas-based businesses.

    It’s an opportunity to showcase innovation, commitment to conservation, and best practices from the industries keep Texas running: Agriculture, Architecture, Financial Services, Food, Beverage, & Grocery,Technology, Energy, Healthcare, Municipal Services, Retail, Transportation, and Construction & Manufacturing. 

    Meet the 2022 TxN 20 Honorees leading sustainability in Energy: NRG Energy and Vistra Corp.

    Solar and energy storage projects in Texas totaling ~850MW — 2022 Honoree Vistra Corp

    Who is Vistra Corp?

    Vistra is a leading Fortune 500 integrated retail electricity and power generation company based in Irving, Texas, providing essential resources for customers, commerce, and communities. Vistra combines an innovative, customer-centric approach to retail with safe, reliable, diverse, and efficient power generation.

    How does Vistra Corp set the standard?

    Since 2002, Vistra Corp’s Trees for Growth has provided 300K trees through their Trees for Growth program and helped generate environmental savings and health benefits for municipalities and residents valued at ~$37 million annually during the life of the trees. Vistra’s largest financial investment in sustainability is the transformation of its generation portfolio toward low-to-no carbon-emitting resources by responsibly retiring coal assets and investing in transformational growth investments such as solar and energy storage. On. Sept. 29, Vistra announced Phase 1 of its solar and energy storage projects in Texas, a total of ~850MW, which represent a capital investment of approximately $850 million

    Vistra also saved 4 billion gallons of water this year — since 2010, Vistra has reduced the total water withdrawn by 42%. 98% of water withdrawn is discharged. While the use of water is imperative to producing electricity from thermal generation, Vistra understands that water is a limited, expensive, and shared resource that is essential to life. In addition to strong stewardship, conservation is a primary focus at each of Vistra’s generation facilities.

    Fresh produce for ≈ 3,000 people annually through NRG Dewey Prairie Garden — 2022 Honoree NRG Energy

    Who is NRG Energy?

    NRG Energy is a Fortune 200 energy company that provides stable energy through traditional and renewable sources. NRG is paving the way to a brighter, sustainable future and more options for getting there with data, technology, and convenience.

    How does NRG Energy set the standard?

    The NRG Dewey Prairie Garden is a reclamation project of 10 acres of lignite mine near Jewett, Texas; the service garden was created by NRG Energy in partnership with Texan by Nature. The reclaimed land, which was formerly a lignite mine, includes a wetland area, pollinator habitat, and future orchard that will provide 10,000 lbs of fresh produce annually and fresh produce for ≈ 3,000 people annually to alleviate food insecurity in Leon, Freestone, and Limestone Counties. 

    Reliantgives, NRG retail brand Reliant’s charitable program, contributed over $5.5 million dollars and 4,000 volunteer hours to 150 local causes. Reliantgives partners with sustainability and conservation-focused non-profits, including EarthShare, Dallas Zoo, Central and West Texas Zoo, Texas State Aquarium, Galveston Bay Foundation, and the Dallas Arboretum. Additionally, as one of Dallas Zoo’s corporate partners, Reliant has contributed $650K+ to Dallas Zoo over 4 years and provides critical general operating support and support of conservation efforts in 32 countries and 4 continents around the world. The largest part of their conservation spending is on Texas Wildlife conservation efforts.

    Why Forward Thinking Leaders in Energy Matter

    Energy is a key industry in facing the climate crisis. As a national energy leader, models of environmental sustainability by Texas companies set the standard for other states and the globe. Last year, Texas produced more net energy than any other state in the country, and produced 26% of the nation’s wind power. The leadership of Energy companies like NRG and Vistra are driving the positive change needed to ensure Texas can sustainably meet energy needs in the future.

    How TxN20 Honorees Are Selected Each Year

    To select the 2022 TxN 20 Honorees, the TxN Team evaluated submissions and conducted independent research across 2,000+ of Texas’ publicly traded and private companies in 12 key industry sectors. 

    All companies were evaluated on a 17-point scoring system, from which the top 60 highest-scoring companies moved on to the final round of TxN 20. A selection committee of top industry leaders and experts was then formed to evaluate the top 60 companies and select the final 20 businesses recognized as TxN 20 Honorees.

    Honorable Mentions: Standouts in Sustainability

    In addition to this year’s TxN 20 honorees, here are three industry standouts for best practices in conservation and sustainability coming from companies across the agriculture industry.

    Industry Innovator: Pioneer Natural Resources

    Pioneer Natural Resources, an oil and gas exploration and production company, taps into the pioneer spirit of West Texas to bring innovation to the oil and gas sector. Pioneer has invested $134 million in The City of Midland’s wastewater treatment facility with the goal of using the reclaimed water that will be generated by the facility for operations in place of scarce groundwater in the Permian Basin. Pioneer is also contributing to efforts to protect the Lesser Prairie Chicken through a Conservation Agreement with Assurances (CAA) with US Fish and Wildlife Services to mitigate the impact of operations on Lesser Prairie Chicken Habitat.  

    Industry Innovator: NextEra Energy

    NextEra Energy is an energy and infrastructure company that invests in making infrastructure and energy production more efficient and mitigating the impact of energy production on wildlife. Since 2012, NextEra has invested nearly $40 billion in renewable energy generation and battery storage advancement and is the world’s largest generator of sun and wind energy. To advance wind energy while protecting birds like eagles, NextEra is piloting an emerging technology called IdentiFlight to track and protect eagles in real time. 

    Industry Innovator: Shell

    Shell is one of the world’s leading energy companies, and they are using their leadership position in the global market to promote innovation in energy. The Shell Eco-Marathon is a competition in which students engineer energy efficient, low emissions vehicles to drive progress in transportation. Shell also administers the Accelerate to Zero program, which offers support to companies decarbonizing their business fleet. 

    Get Involved:

    Is your company at the forefront of sustainability in Texas? Share your work with Texan by Nature by submitting Environmental, Social, Governance (ESG) data that showcases how your company benefits people, prosperity, and natural resources to programs@texanbynature.org.

    To be considered for the official TxN 20 list, companies must:

    • Have operations and employees based in Texas;
    • Share a demonstrated commitment to conservation & sustainability;
    • Showcase tangible efforts, impact, and data in conservation;
    • NOT be a conservation-based nonprofit (501c3).
  9. TxN 20 Industry Highlights — Technology

    Leave a Comment

    2022 TxN 20: Texan-led leadership in conservation for a sustainable future in Technology.

    The Texan by Nature team is excited to present the fourth annual list of Texan by Nature 20 (TxN 20) Honorees. TxN 20 recognizes outstanding work in conservation and sustainability from Texas-based businesses.

    It’s an opportunity to showcase innovation, commitment to conservation, and best practices from the industries keep Texas running: Agriculture, Architecture, Financial Services, Food, Beverage, & Grocery, Technology, Energy, Healthcare, Municipal Services, Retail, Transportation, and Construction & Manufacturing. 

    Meet the 2022 TxN 20  Honorees leading sustainability in Technology: Cirrus Logic and IBM.

    100% of Austin and London facilities transitioned to renewable electricity contracts – 2022 Honoree Cirrus Logic

    Who is Cirrus Logic?

    Cirrus Logic is a leading supplier of audio semiconductors, specializing in developing low-power, mixed-signal processing solutions for mobile technology. 

    How does Cirrus Logic set the standard?

    Cirrus Logic has implemented a waste reduction strategy plan that emphasizes diverting e-waste from landfills. In addition to reselling and recycling electronics, Cirrus Logic donated approximately 380 computers to two organizations: Latinitas and Edinburgh Remakery. The company made significant progress in transitioning to renewable energy, increasing from 15% of renewable-energy-powered global operations to 79% in the 2022 fiscal year. Finally, Cirrus Logic thoroughly evaluated their greenhouse gas emissions to better understand their footprint and has set a greenhouse gas emissions reduction target to reduce their Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions by 90% by 2030.

    Over 26,500 cubic meters of water recycled in 2021 – 2022 Honoree IBM

    Who is IBM?

    IBM is a world leader in technology, best known for producing computer hardware and software. IBM Cloud allows businesses to organize data and engage with customers in new, seamless ways.

    How does IBM set the standard?

    In 2021, IBM continued to cement their commitment to sustainability by joining the Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact and becoming a founding member of the European Green Digital Coalition. In alignment with like-minded companies, IBM pledged to make important changes to protect the planet, from conserving water and purchasing renewable energy to developing energy-efficient products. In that same year, IBM avoided 90,000 MWh of energy consumption and 26,500 metric tons of CO2 emissions. In addition to conserving energy in their facilities, IBM products are designed to be increasingly efficient, getting four Power9-based server models and four storage products certified under the US EPA ENERGY STAR program.

     

    Why Forward-Thinking Leaders in Technology Matter

    The technology industry is built on innovation and constantly strives to find scalable solutions for problems big and small. According to calculations from the UN, digital technology could reduce the world’s carbon emissions by 17% through improved efficiency. This means tech companies are in a unique position to move not only themselves in a more sustainable direction, but drive innovation in other industries as well. Cirrus Logic and IBM have shown that tech companies can both mitigate their own environmental impact and give consumers sustainable options, creating positive change from the inside out.

    How TxN20 Honorees Are Selected Each Year

    To select the 2022 TxN 20 Honorees, the TxN Team evaluated submissions and conducted independent research across 2,000+ of Texas’ publicly traded and private companies in 12 key industry sectors. 

    All companies were evaluated on a 17-point scoring system, from which the top 60 highest-scoring companies moved on to the final round of TxN 20. A selection committee of top industry leaders and experts was then formed to evaluate the top 60 companies and select the final 20 businesses recognized as TxN 20 Honorees.

    Honorable Mentions: Standouts in Sustainability 
    In addition to this year’s TxN 20 honorees, here are three industry standouts for best practices in conservation and sustainability coming from companies across the agriculture industry.

    Industry Innovator: HP Inc.

    • Initially launched in 2019, the HP Sustainable Forests Collaborative strives to counteract deforestation through restoration. In late 2021, the HP Sustainable Forests Collaborative took a big step toward achieving their goals when they became the World Wildlife Fund’s (WWF) largest corporate partner. They pledged $80 million to aid in addressing the impacts on forests from paper used in printing with HP printers and protect ever-important forest ecosystems.
    • In 2021, 134,000 tons of recycled plastic were used in manufacturing 5.4 million Original HP and Samsung cartridges, including plastic from recycled HP cartridges.

    Industry Innovator: Cisco Systems Inc.

    • Cisco has various platforms and forums for their employees to promote and educate on sustainability. SustainX is Cisco’s annual sustainability speaker series. SustainX has brought experts to give presentations on topics from reducing carbon emissions to environmental justice. Additionally, Cisco encourages employee-led groups and initiatives like GreenHouse, a platform where employees that are passionate about sustainability are encouraged to share and connect with like-minded colleagues, and the Green Team Network, a collection of chapters that raise awareness and sponsor discussions about ways to live more sustainably.
    • Connected Conservation, a wildlife conservation organization based in Zimbabwe, uses Cisco’s surveillance, data, and analytic technology to support their mission of protecting endangered species.

    Get Involved:

    Is your company at the forefront of sustainability in Texas? Share your work with Texan by Nature by submitting Environmental, Social, Governance (ESG) data that showcases how your company benefits people, prosperity, and natural resources to programs@texanbynature.org.

    To be considered for the official TxN 20 list, companies must:

    • Have operations and employees based in Texas;
    • Share a demonstrated commitment to conservation & sustainability;
    • Showcase tangible efforts, impact, and data in conservation;
    • NOT be a conservation-based nonprofit (501c3).
  10. TxN 20 Industry Highlights — Food, Beverage, and Grocery

    Leave a Comment

    2022 TxN 20: Texan-led leadership in conservation for a sustainable future in Food, Beverage, and Grocery.

    The Texan by Nature team is excited to present the fourth annual list of Texan by Nature 20 (TxN 20) Honorees. TxN 20 recognizes outstanding work in conservation and sustainability from Texas-based businesses.

    It’s an opportunity to showcase innovation, commitment to conservation, and best practices from the industries that keep Texas running: Agriculture, Architecture, Financial Services, Food, Beverage, & Grocery, Technology, Energy, Healthcare, Municipal Services, Retail, Transportation, and Construction & Manufacturing. 

    Meet the 2022 TxN 20 Honorees leading sustainability in the Food, Beverage, and Grocery industry: Sysco and Farmer Brothers.

    $2.5 million to Sustainable Grazing and Wildlife Habitat  – 2022 Honoree Sysco

    Who is Sysco?

    Sysco is the global leader in selling, marketing, and distributing food and non-food products to restaurants, healthcare, and educational facilities, lodging establishments and other customers around the world.

    potato field irrigated by a pivot sprinkler system

    How does Sysco set the standard?

    Sysco launched a Volunteer Hours Tool for associates to enter their volunteer hours. Associates are tracking volunteer hours to achieve the Global Good Goal of providing $500 Million for Global Good by 2025. Sysco teamed up with the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) and Cargill to award $2.5 million to 10 projects to invest in community-led sustainable grazing practices and wildlife habitat to ranchers in support of implementing the largest sustainable grazing effort in the Southern Great Plains, one of America’s most important beef-producing regions. Sysco identified and implemented water-saving opportunities such as recycling water from vehicle washing stations and using rainwater for landscaping at their offices, resulting in over 2.5 billion gallons of water conserved in agriculture.

    77% of waste diverted from landfill in 2021 — 2022 Honoree Farmer Brothers
    Who is Farmer Brothers?

    For over a century, the Farmer Brothers company has built their business on providing extraordinary products at incomparable value to coffee-minded food service operators all across the country. From helping growers use sustainable farming methods at origin, through their supply chain, and eliminating waste in facilities; Farmer Brothers ensures sustainability is at the core of every decision they make.

    How does Farmer Brothers set the standard?

    Farmer Brothers donated over 42K worth of coffee and culinary products to local food banks and community organizations across the country in partnership with Feeding America. Farmer Brothers has also achieved a near 23% reduction in fuel use through reducing truck transportation with a new distribution center. These and other fleet innovations lead to savings of approximately 50,000 gallons of fuel per year, which is equivalent to 96 vehicles, 1,075 oil barrels and 69 homes. By performing waste audits at production facilities, working with local organizations to donate food, and up-cycling goods like coffee burlap and more, 77% of Farmer Brothers’ waste was diverted from landfills in 2021.

    Why Forward Thinking Leaders in Food, Beverage, and Grocery Matters: 

    Food and beverages like coffee are essential to our daily lives, but they can also be resource-intensive. Reducing energy and water intensity to make the same delicious products that fuel us is vital to maintaining quality of life in the future. With 45% of Texas’ water supply expected to be supplied by conservation and water reuse, it is good business  to follow the environmentally sustainable models  exemplified by Sysco and Farmer Brothers in the production of Food, Beverages, and Groceries. 

    How TxN20 Honorees Are Selected Each Year

    To select the 2022 TxN 20 Honorees, the TxN Team evaluated submissions and conducted independent research across 2,000+ of Texas’ publicly traded and private companies in 12 key industry sectors. 

    All companies were evaluated on a 17-point scoring system, from which the top 60 highest-scoring companies moved on to the final round of TxN 20. A selection committee of top industry leaders and experts was then formed to evaluate the top 60 companies and select the final 20 businesses recognized as TxN 20 Honorees.

    Honorable Mentions: Standouts in Sustainability
    In addition to this year’s TxN 20 honorees, here are three industry standouts for best practices in conservation and sustainability coming from companies across the agriculture industry.

    Industry Innovator: Aldi

    Aldi is a leader in  sustainable practices in the food industry. Aldi purchases green electricity that covers 100% of its energy consumption. Additionally, Aldi prioritizes reducing plastics, packaging, and waste throughout their stores. Aldi reduced more than 62% of AlDI-exclusive packaging, shifted 19k tons of packaging to recyclable materials, and diverted 74% of operational waste.

    Industry Innovator: Tetrapak

    Tetrapak promotes sustainability throughout their company. Their notable efforts include their circular recycling design through which they recycle and reuse their cartons into new raw material and products. Additionally, Tetrapack’s “Tetra Rex Plant-based” packaging is their carbon-neutral label to reduce carbon emissions in their company.

    Industry Innovator: General Mills

    General Mills is a leader in sustainability as they align their business practices with the UN SDG goals. General Mills’ unique practices include prioritizing regenerative agriculture on 115k acres of land. The company has also shown water stewardship by working to diffuse risks in priority watersheds across their global supply chain. General Mills has 3 active plans in place with the goal of 10 priority watersheds by 2025.

    Get Involved:

    Is your company at the forefront of sustainability in Texas? Share your work with Texan by Nature by submitting Environmental, Social, Governance (ESG) data that showcases how your company benefits people, prosperity, and natural resources to programs@texanbynature.org.

    To be considered for the official TxN 20 list, companies must:

    • Have operations and employees based in Texas;
    • Share a demonstrated commitment to conservation & sustainability;
    • Showcase tangible efforts, impact, and data in conservation;
    • NOT be a conservation-based nonprofit (501c3).

     

     

  11. TxN 20 Industry Highlights — Architecture, Design, and Development

    Leave a Comment

    2022 TxN 20: Texan leadership in conservation for a sustainable future in Architecture.

    The Texan by Nature team is excited to present the fourth annual list of Texan by Nature 20 (TxN 20) Honorees. TxN 20 recognizes outstanding work in conservation and sustainability from Texas-based businesses.

    It’s an opportunity to showcase innovation, commitment to conservation, and best practices from the industries that keep Texas running: Agriculture, Architecture, Financial Services, Food, Beverage, & Grocery, Technology, Energy, Healthcare, Municipal Services, Retail, Transportation, and Construction & Manufacturing. 

    Turning their pledge into action, this company has diverted 100.73 Metric Tons of CO2 through carbon offsets purchases – 2022 Honoree: Overland Partners

    Who is Overland Partners?

    Overland Partners is a San Antonio-based architecture and urban design company setting the standard in infusing stewardship into architectural practice.

    Overland Partners implements a rigorous sustainability review process, reevaluating their goals and commitments every three years with 100% of their employees committed to carbon emission reduction. Their pledge to the American Institute of Architecture’s 2030 commitment means they have reported emissions data annually since 2014.

    From this commitment comes action. Overland Partners’ PV panels reduce the amount of electricity generated from fossil fuels. Through the purchase of annual carbon offsets for its operations, Overland Partners offset 100.73 Metric Tons of Carbon Dioxide (CO2) in 2021. These offsets translate to the carbon offset from roughly 600 mature trees. The work doesn’t stop there. Overland Partners’ in-house composting program amounts to 5,475 gallons of waste (454 pounds of methane) diverted from landfills each year.


    A Global Design Powerhouse Saving 21 Billion Gallons of Water — 2022 Honoree
    Stantec

    Who is Stantec?

    Stantec is an international engineering, architecture, and design consulting firm that serves a wide range of projects and communities. Experts in innovation, Stantec worked with a top technology company to help improve water conservation and prevent pollution across its supply chain, supporting everything from engineering to capacity building. 

    Stantec’s conservation efforts start at the source, investing $4.4 million to support communities, granting $830,000 in STEM scholarships for underrepresented and BIPOC communities, and providing more than $610,000 in STEM grants. During the annual Stantec in the Community Week (SITC) Stantec employees engage in conservation and volunteering efforts for the communities they serve. In 2021, 2946 employees donated time to 341+ community organizations.

    Why Forward-Thinking Leaders in Architecture, Design, and Development Matter

    Reducing consumption of non-renewable resources, minimizing waste, and creating efficient, healthy, and productive environments are key to building a sustainable future. By making environmentally conscious design decisions at every phase of a project, architects and designers are reducing the negative impacts and carbon footprint of our environment. Smart, forward-thinking designs ensure a future tradeoff of less carbon emissions, less energy consumed, and more water conserved throughout a building’s life cycle. These decisions, combined with community efforts and investments in conservation are driving Texas to a more sustainable future.

    How TxN20 Honorees Are Selected Each Year

    To select the 2022 TxN 20 Honorees, the TxN Team evaluated submissions and conducted independent research across 2,000+ of Texas’ publicly traded and private companies in 12 key industry sectors. 

    All companies were evaluated on a 17-point scoring system, from which the top 60 highest-scoring companies moved on to the final round of TxN 20. A selection committee of top industry leaders and experts was then formed to evaluate the top 60 companies and select the final 20 businesses recognized as TxN 20 Honorees.

    Honorable Mentions: Standouts in Sustainability

    In addition to this year’s TxN 20 honorees, here are three industry standouts for best practices in conservation and sustainability coming from companies across the architecture, design, and development industry.

    Industry Innovator: Dewberry

    • Since 2014, Dewberry has reported annual sustainability data for the American Institute of Architecture 2030 Commitment. 94.3% of their projects have met the 25% lighting density reduction target.
    • Dewberry’s Engineering Innovation Building demonstrates a commitment to sustainable design, with a large native grass space and a high-efficiency mechanical system providing a 30% indoor water use reduction and saving 6,795,990 gallons of water thus far.

    Industry Innovator: Jacobs

    • Jacobs has overseen large global projects, such as the Pensacola East Bay Oyster Habitat Restoration Project, which, in collaboration with The Nature Conservancy, placed 33 oyster reefs along the Santa Rosa shoreline and has expanded to the continent’s largest reef reconstruction project.
    • Focusing on the future, Jacobs’ Butterfly Effect program is a new Climate Response Education Initiative teaching young students to learn about sustainability and making positive impacts on climate change.

    Industry Innovator: Gensler

    • With over 188 million square feet of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) registered and 110 million square feet of LEED-certified building projects, Gensler has been able to divert 150 million tons of waste and save 1.2 billion gallons of water annually. 
    • Within a decade, Gensler has committed to eliminating all future net emissions.

    Get Involved:

    Is your company at the forefront of conservation and environmental sustainability in Texas? Do you want to be recognized for your efforts? Contact Texan by Nature at programs@texanbynature.org.

    To be considered for the official TxN 20 list, companies must:

    • Have operations and employees based in Texas;
    • Share a demonstrated commitment to conservation & sustainability;
    • Showcase tangible efforts, impact, and data in conservation;
    • NOT be a conservation-based nonprofit (501c3).
  12. TxN 20 Industry Highlights — Financial Services

    Leave a Comment

     

    2022 TxN 20: Texan-led leadership in conservation for a sustainable future in Financial Services.

    The Texan by Nature team is excited to present the fourth annual list of Texan by Nature 20 (TxN 20) Honorees. TxN 20 recognizes outstanding work in conservation and sustainability from Texas-based businesses.

    It’s an opportunity to showcase innovation, commitment to conservation, and best practices from the industries that keep Texas running: Agriculture, Architecture, Financial Services, Food, Beverage, & Grocery, Technology, Energy, Healthcare, Municipal Services, Retail, Transportation, and Construction & Manufacturing. 

    Meet the 2022 TxN 20 Honorees leading sustainability in Financial Services: Comerica Bank and North American Development Bank.

    The Company Investing in Environmental Progress with $1.7 Billion Loaned to Green Projects – 2022 Honoree: Comerica Bank

    Who is Comerica Bank?

    Comerica Bank is a subsidiary of Comerica Incorporated (NYSE: CMA), a financial services company headquartered in Dallas, Texas, that understands the valuable return in supporting our environment. Their $1.7 billion in loans and commitments goes toward 14 green loan categories, including green building (new and retro-fit), bio-fuels, recycling, biogas, energy efficiency, vehicle electrification, brownfield redevelopment, smart grid technologies, wind energy, pollution control, solar energy, green engineering, geothermal, wave or tidal energy, other green services, and products.

    Comerica’s innovative Master of Sustainability Awareness (MSA) program is a colleague education and engagement program dedicated to sustainability. Developed in-house, this program seeks to move employees from learning about sustainability to sharing what they’ve learned and then putting it into action, both at work and at home. The effects are evident, as the organization recycled or repurposed 96 tons of electronic equipment in 2021 and diverted  57% of its total waste from landfills.

    Covering Carbon Offsets for Employee Flights — 2022 Honoree: North American Development Bank

    Who is North American Development Bank?

    North American development bank is a San Antonio-based financial services company dedicated to helping fund the environment and people of both Mexico and Texas. With nearly a 1,255-mile shared border with Mexico, Texas is an optimal location and has benefitted from the Bank’s financing programs. Of the 140 projects located in the U.S., 76 are in Texas, and of the US $1.5 billion in funding provided to projects in the U.S., just over half has gone to support projects in Texas.

    Their commitment beyond our shared region extends to their purchase of carbon offsets for each flight NADBank staff takes on work-related travel. Carbon offsets are voluntary schemes whereby people pay to offset or make up for the emissions their flights produce. This means that even on the go, NADBank employees can give back to the environment. 

    North American Development Bank recognizes the value of conserving our natural resources. NADBank has contributed a significant impact in up to 4.2 million gallons per year by installing more than 20 miles of drinking water distribution lines, more than 5000 new or improved water connections, and installing 3.43 million gallons per day of new or improved wastewater treatment systems capacity. In addition, NADB eliminated 20.5 million gallons per day of untreated or inadequately treated wastewater discharges. 

    Why Forward-Thinking Leaders in Financial Services Matter

    It is no secret that Texas is a national leader in industry and economy, with a GDP of 1.83 trillion dollars in 2021, rising over 3.5 percent from the previous year and taking the claim for second highest GDP in the country. To future-proof this growth, the financial service industry has the opportunity to innovate and invest in environmental sustainability. By investing in green services, and weaving conservation efforts into business strategy, we can secure a prosperous economy and rich natural resources for future generations of Texans.

    How TxN20 Honorees Are Selected Each Year

    To select the 2022 TxN 20 Honorees, the TxN Team evaluated submissions and conducted independent research across 2,000+ of Texas’ publicly traded and private companies in 12 key industry sectors.

    All companies were evaluated on a 17-point scoring system, from which the top 60 highest-scoring companies moved on to the final round of TxN 20. A selection committee of top industry leaders and experts was then formed to evaluate the top 60 companies and select the final 20 businesses recognized as TxN 20 Honorees.

    Honorable Mentions: Standouts in Sustainability

    In addition to this year’s TxN 20 honorees, here are three industry standouts for best practices in conservation and sustainability coming from companies across the agriculture industry.

    Industry Innovator: Allegiance Bank

    • Allegiance Bank is a financial services company that prioritizes sustainable practices throughout its company. In 2021, the bank launched its Allegiance Goes Green initiative in 2021 on Earth Day’s 50th anniversary, forming a “Green Team” of 15 bankers who are passionate about environmental issues such as recycling, and reducing their carbon footprint.
    • Additionally, the bank recycled over 221,000 lbs of paper, saving more than 1,885 trees.

    Industry Innovator: JP Morgan Chase Bank

    • JP Morgan Chase introduced a beekeeping program and installed 20 beehives at six of their corporate offices. These hives brought 750,000 bees into the communities that helped pollinate 450 different plant species over 300 square miles of land. The success of these hives will only increase as they plan to introduce more hives to more offices across the country.
    • In 2021, the organization diverted 490 metric tons of solid waste from landfills.

    Industry Innovator: Prosperity Bank

    • Prosperity Bank is a financial services company working towards a more sustainable world by tracking sustainable efforts and their return on investment. Through all of their methods of sustainability and conservation, Prosperity Bank saved $4,276,564.03 in 2021.
    • By tracking financial savings, Prosperity Bank promotes the economic benefits of incorporating sustainable practices in their industry. By investing in efficient energy, the company saved 3,190 kw of energy, equating to $255,268.88.

    Get Involved:

    Is your company at the forefront of sustainability in Texas? Share your work with Texan by Nature by submitting Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) data that showcases how your company benefits people, prosperity, and natural resources to programs@texanbynature.org.

    To be considered for the official TxN 20 list, companies must:

    • Have operations and employees based in Texas;
    • Share a demonstrated commitment to conservation & sustainability;
    • Showcase tangible efforts, impact, and data in conservation;
    • NOT be a conservation-based nonprofit (501c3).
X