Whirlpool Corporation Highlights Ongoing Commitment To Delivering Positive Environmental, Social Change in 2020 Sustainability Report
Whirlpool Corporation today published its 2020 Sustainability Report, highlighting the company’s continued commitment to its environmental, social, and governance (ESG) initiatives, and progress in meeting its ambitious sustainability and Inclusion & Diversity targets. The company also released its 2020 Annual Report today, highlighting Whirlpool Corporation’s focus on the health and safety of its employees throughout the COVID-19 pandemic while again delivering record results.
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“Sustainability is core to our culture and is of paramount importance to our vision—being the best kitchen and laundry appliance company in constant pursuit of improving life at home,” said Marc Bitzer, Chairman and CEO of Whirlpool Corporation. “As we worked to manage the challenges of COVID-19 in 2020, our resiliency enabled us to take care of our employees, consumers and communities while still meeting and advancing our environmental and social commitments. We are proud of the role we play in protecting our people and our planet and continue to push ourselves to deliver on our ambitious goals.”
A summary of achievements and continued progress outlined in the 2020 Whirlpool Corporation Sustainability Report include:
- Achieved zero waste to landfill in 25 of our 35 sites, or 71 percent earning Gold or Platinum status in 2020.
- Whirlpool Corporation’s greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets (Scopes 1, 2 & 3) were approved by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi)—the leading independent assessor of emissions targets—and are consistent with reductions required to keep global warming to well below 2 degrees Celsius, as set by the Paris Agreement. Over the last four years, we have delivered a 20 percent reduction in those emissions.
- Achieved record low levels of energy and water intensity in our plants.
- Entered into a virtual power purchasing agreement (VPPA) that is expected to cover 15 percent of our global Scope 2 emissions through investments in wind energy in the U.S.
- Formalized our commitment to the U.N. Global Compact. As a participant of this globally-recognized initiative, Whirlpool Corporation continues to expand its efforts to uphold sustainable and responsible business practices in day-to-day global operations.
- Announced OUR PLEDGE to Equality and Fairness for our Black Colleagues, a multi-year action plan that includes committing to increase by 50 percent the number of Black employees across all levels and increase by 50 percent the number of Black director-level employees and above.
- Chairman and CEO Marc Bitzer became a founding member of OneTen, a coalition of leading executives with the mission to train, hire and advance one million Black Americans over the next 10 years into family-sustaining jobs with opportunities for advancement.
- Received a perfect score on the Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s annual Corporate Equality Index for the 18th year in a row. This distinction recognizes Whirlpool Corporation’s ongoing commitment to Inclusion and Diversity and designates the company as a “Best Place to Work for LGBTQ Equality.”
- Named to the 2020 Diversity Best Practices Inclusion Index, highlighting Whirlpool Corporation’s ongoing commitment to engaging in effective practices of diversity and inclusion. Whirlpool Corporation was one of 98 organizations to achieve a 60 percent or higher rating, marking our inclusion on the index for the third year in a row.
- Took action to protect employees and communities since the onset of the COVID-19 crisis, including donating supplies and critical personal protective equipment for local hospitals and health organizations, and designing and manufacturing the Powered Air Purifying Respirator, a potentially life-saving innovation developed collaboratively with Dow Inc. and Reynolds Consumer Products Inc., in just seven weeks.
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- Began disclosing impacts on climate-related risks and opportunities using the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures framework.
- Named to the 2020 Dow Jones Sustainability Indices (DJSI) North America Index for the 14th time in the last 15 years, in recognition of our longstanding commitment to sustainable business practices.
- Added two female directors in the past two years, resulting in 33 percent (four of 12) of Whirlpool Corporation’s non-employee directors being women. Seven out of 12 of our non-employee directors are gender or racial/ethnically diverse.
- Expanded integration of ESG principles throughout the business with the formation of ESG Councils led by members of our Executive Committee and an expanded ESG Task Force.
“We are committed to protecting our shared environment, supporting our employees’ continuous growth, ensuring their safety, and always doing our best to uplift our communities,” said Ron Voglewede, Whirlpool Corporation’s director of global sustainability. “In 2020, we refined our governance structure to further strengthen our commitment to ESG and better drive progress in our work. We continue to deliver on our goals and are committed to leading the industry in driving positive change for our people, our communities and our environment.”
In 2020, the company’s efforts focused on supporting immediate community needs as a result of COVID-19, as outlined in both the sustainability and annual reports. Whirlpool Corporation has played, and continues to play, an important role as the world addresses the pandemic. The company’s manufacturing plants have remained open and working to produce the refrigerators, dishwashers, and cooking and laundry appliances that are needed for people to remain safe at home.