Covanta releases sustainability report

The company has diverted more than 900,000 tons of waste this year.

Covanta, a waste and energy solutions provider headquartered in Morristown, New Jersey, has released its latest sustainability report detailing its progress against sustainability goals.

"At Covanta, we work every day to protect tomorrow,” Stephen Jones, president and CEO, says. "Our operations help communities, clients and customers find practical solutions to waste and materials management while generating clean energy. By running our business responsibly, efficiently and profitably, we are addressing the three pillars of sustainability: people, planet and prosperity."

The report details specific progress in Covanta's sustainability focus areas, which include materials management, environmental, community relations, safety and health and workforce engagement. Highlights from the report include:

  • avoided, recycled or reused more than 900,000 tons of waste (a 60 percent increase);
  • achieved an increase in nonferrous metals recovered for recycling over the past five years – Covanta now recycles more than 510,000 tons of metal annually;
  • increased use of alternative water sources Reclaimed wastewater, stormwater, saline water and once-through cooling discharge now comprise 35 percent of process water used;
  • partnered with communities and law enforcement to safely destroy over 4 million pounds of unwanted medications through the Rx4Safety program;
  • continued to make workplace safety the top priority: 26 Covanta facilities and/or groups were awarded the Occupational Excellence Achievement Award by the National Safety Council, Itasca, Illinois; and
  • hired more than 150 veterans. Veterans now represent 15 percent of the Covanta employee base.

"Sustainably isn't just the way we conduct our business, it is our business," Paul Gilman, Covanta's chief sustainability officer, says. "Environmental and social responsibility are at the core of everything we do. Therefore, our sustainability goals guide not only our work in the sustainable waste management sector, but also ensure we provide a safe and diverse workplace for our employees, continue our practice of developing and maintaining strong ties with local communities and maintain our track record of delivering beyond compliance environmental performance. I'm very pleased with the considerable strides we have made toward achieving our targets."

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