DENVER – CH2M HILL recently released its 2011 Sustainability Report documenting its environmental, social, and economic performance. The report is available at www.ch2mhill.com/sr.
"Doing right by our people, our clients, our communities, and our planet is at the heart of our decision process at CH2M HILL," said Lee McIntire, chairman and CEO. "This report provides an opportunity to share the progress we are making in our programs and projects related to sustainability, while candidly assessing opportunities for improvement."
CH2M HILL said it was one of the first firms in the engineering and construction industry to publish a sustainability report and the first to establish an internal Environmental Management System (EMS) that follows International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 14001 guidelines.
"To address today’s global and interconnected challenges of climate variation, energy, water, and land development, in addition to social and economic considerations, we call on our wide array of technical disciplines to develop comprehensive sustainable solutions for our clients," said Nancy Tuor, CH2M HILL’s executive sponsor for sustainability. "CH2M HILL builds sustainability into the way we do business, applying a whole systems approach and technical expertise to turn sustainability strategy into operational reality."
In addition to reporting Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) indicators, CH2M HILL’s report details the firm’s approach to sustainability, stories of internal and client accomplishments, and profiles of employees who influence client work and operations every day. CH2M HILL has formal EMS programs in North America, England, Australia, and the Middle East-North Africa region. The North American EMS serves as the focal point of this report because it encompasses the corporate headquarters in Denver, 123 offices, and approximately 80 percent of the company’s employees.
Accomplishments detailed in the report include the following:
- Joining the CEO Water Mandate in 2010, pledging to implement strategies to help address the global water crisis.
- Producing more work with fewer resources. In 2005, CH2M HILL used 169 metric tons of paper per billion dollars in revenue, and by 2010 used 90 metric tons of paper per billion dollars – reducing paper use 18 percent.
- Reducing energy use at its Denver headquarters by 11 percent in 2009 (through relamping, motion sensors, standardized temperatures, and energy-efficient equipment) and another 2 percent in 2010.
- Establishing a database to document green building projects. Initial input of a limited number of projects documented savings of more than 8.3 million kilowatt-hours of electricity, 310,000 therms of gas, and 36.3 million gallons of water annually.
- Treating 207.6 billion gallons of wastewater in 2010 – of this, 2.1 billion gallons of effluent was reused – at the 78 water and wastewater facilities managed by CH2M HILL in the Western United States.
- Reducing net impacts of North American facilities energy consumption by 20 percent through purchasing carbon offsets and Renewable Energy Credits.
- Avoiding 1,377 tons of CO2 emissions in 2010 by increasing full-time teleworkers by 29 percent.
- Focusing on safety to achieve declines in recordable and lost-time incident rates. CH2M HILL’s 2010 employee recordable incident rate was 63 percent lower and the lost-time incident rate was 66 percent lower than the U.S. industry average.
- Donating nearly $23 million during the last five years to support non-profit organizations in its global communities.
- Allocating 35 percent of the firm’s 2010 total $3.2 billion spent on subcontracts in 2010 in the United States to small businesses, or those owned by minorities, women, and veterans.