At Kohler, environmental sustainability and stewardship are operationalized both inside and outside of our company each day. On June 5, millions across the globe will be like -minded in celebration of World Environment Day. As the largest global platform for environmental outreach, World Environment Day stresses that there is only one Earth and presses for collective, transformative action for a better planet.
This World Environment Day, we are celebrating our associates who are driving key environmental sustainability initiatives both here at Kohler and as part of their personal passions in their own communities. Our commitment to the environment has been long engrained into values of our business and is realized daily through the action of our associates.
“So called ‘free goods’ such as sunshine and fresh air may be of more real worth than most economic goods.” - Walter J. Kohler, 1934
Our Believing in Better® operating philosophy is our guiding beacon to a future we can all celebrate. Our goal? To be better. Better for the planet that we share, better for the communities that we serve, and better for the lives that we touch. A key pillar to our environmental sustainability strategy is education and associate action. This World Environment Day, we’re proud to amplify the stories of our own associates who harness their passions for the environment in the pursuit of better.
“From reducing our operational footprint to delighting our customers with environmentally friendly products as well as serving as environmental stewards and advocates in their communities – Kohler associates have proven that their passion for the environment is a reckoning force on the path to a better planet.”
- Kayla Buszka, Sr. Project Leader – Sustainability and Stewardship
Sustainability Champions Program
Kohler Sustainability Champions are passionate associates integrating environmental sustainability into to their everyday roles at Kohler. Our Sustainability Champions integrate environmental sustainability into their jobs to create a better planet through intentional decisions that reduce environmental impact in their businesses, teams, communities, and day-to-day lives. They act by utilizing their unique skill sets, experiences, and knowledge of the business to identify areas of opportunity to reduce our environmental footprint, our product footprint, and to ultimately delight our customers. Kohler mechanical engineer Danielle Jackson is one of Kohler’s Sustainability Champions. “I’ve always been a fan of the motto ‘Going Green,’” she says. “I encourage others to become more sustainable by having conversations as well as showing the results from environmentally favorable actions.”
In March, Kohler associates worldwide took part in Earth Hour, which is an international movement encouraging people, communities, and more to turn off nonessential electric lights to help reduce carbon emissions. From the corporate headquarters in Kohler, Wis., to the Zhuhai Kohler plant in China, we had record-breaking participation this year. Nearly 200 associates from various corners of the world celebrated Earth Hour in the spirit of environmental sustainability. Their bold commitment to driving awareness helped educate other associates, and even their own families and children, on the importance of energy conservation and the impacts we can make through small habit changes and better awareness. You could say this international movement put the power in our people … quite literally!
As we celebrated Earth Day this April, it was very apparent how Kohler’s inspirational associates are taking environmental action each and every day. In China, associates planted trees, roses, and begonias to celebrate our planet and be good stewards of their community. Since 2010, the Kohler China Kitchen & Bath team has planned ten Kohler forests across locations in China with 350,000 trees planted covering Hebei, Shanxi, Yunnan, Ningxia, Shandong, Jiangxi, Shanxi, Qinghai, and Liaoning province. They continue to work towards a goal of planting 1 million trees to have a positive impact on the environment.
The Earth Day action continued as our IT teams published an environmental sustainability series featuring associates and their personal passions for the environment. Senior digital architect Sunil Madgula is a volunteer with the Save Soil Movement, which aims to increase organic matter in soil by advocating for national policies toward soil revitalization. Senior administrative assistant Lis Krueger collects and repurposes plastic shopping bags, crocheting them into mats for the homeless to not only mitigate waste to landfill, but also to help those in need. This year’s Earth Day theme of “Invest in Our Planet” was captured effortlessly through the time and resources our associates dedicated to this important day!