I always thought that theme parks could be one of the most wasteful, unsustainable places on earth as I imagine piles and piles of garbage in their gigantic trash warehouse; tons of water being used to keep their gardens and lawns nice and pretty as well as to operate their water rides; and all that energy to light up and keep the whole place moving.
Well, Walt Disney is making sure their theme parks will be family-friendly and environment-friendly as well as they announced their long-term sustainability goals in their first-ever corporate responsibility report.
Some of their 3-5 year environmental goals (among others) include zero waste, zero net direct greenhouse gas emissions, reduce indirect greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from electricity consumption, minimize water use, and minimize product footprint.
As of 2006, Disney’s direct GHG emissions from fuel combustions and refrigerant leaks coming from their various global offices and retail stations, theme parks and resorts, and cruise ships, were around 567,042 tons of carbon dioxide equivalent. Indirect GHG emissions from electricity were estimated at 1.08 million tons.
By 2012, Disney hopes to reduce their direct emissions from fuels by 50%. The company said it is also developing a plan to aggressively pursue renewable sources of electricity to reduce emissions from electricity.
This will be a huge contract deal for renewable energy companies for sure.
As for their waste, around 298,000 tons were generated in 2006 and 170,000 tons of them were sent to landfill. Disney hopes to decrease 50% of the 2006 solid waste to landfill by 2013 as well as increase use of post-consumer recycled materials.
The American Chemistry Council will be happy to hear that all of Disney’s plastic bags will have a message that describes the environmental attributes of the bag and inspires reuse and recycling for their disposal.