3M Wins Record Number of Energy Star Awards

The Maplewood-based manufacturer reduced its worldwide greenhouse gas emissions by 77 percent and its U.S. greenhouse gas emissions by 79 percent between 1990 and December 2009.

3M Company, Inc., has won the Energy Star Sustained Excellence Award for seven consecutive years-giving it more wins than any other company.

The awards are presented annually by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Energy and given to organizations that have made outstanding contributions to protecting the environment through energy efficiency.

There are several types of Energy Star awards, but “Sustained Excellence” is the most prestigious.

According to Maplewood-based 3M, the company reduced its worldwide greenhouse gas emissions by 77 percent and its U.S. greenhouse gas emissions by 79 percent between 1990 and December 2009. It is well on its way to reaching a goal to achieve an additional 5 percent global reduction between 2006 and 2011, having accomplished a 52 percent reduction between 2006 and the end of 2009.

In 2010, 3M implemented 153 energy efficiency initiatives, including 59 projects related to its “3P” program-Pollution Prevention Pays, which dates back to 1975. Those initiatives together saved close to $8 million during the first three quarters of last year, 3M said.

3M Corporate Energy Manager Steve Schultz said in a statement that the company has been committed to goal-oriented sustainability projects “well before environmental issues were on the public agenda.”

The manufacturing giant's sustainability efforts in 2010 include the formation of research and business partnerships to address renewable energy issues; the presentation of the company's first annual global Energy Excellence Awards to stimulate conservation efforts internally; cooperation with German efforts to promote environmentally sound economic development in China; sponsorship of an Energy Star home tour in Minnesota; the distribution of grants to academicians to conduct energy research; and construction of two international headquarters facilities with sustainable green designs.

“3M's long-term leadership and commitment to energy efficiency demonstrate the types of accomplishments we can all achieve in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and protecting our global environment,” the EPA's acting director of atmospheric programs, Elizabeth Craig, said in a statement. “We look forward to the company's continued partnership and leadership.”

3M is Minnesota's fifth-largest public company based on revenue, which totaled $26.7 billion in 2010.