We Are Driving Climate Action and Helping to Keep Waste Out of Nature
In partnership with our Franchisees, suppliers and producers, we’re finding new and innovative ways to reduce emissions, keep waste out of nature and preserve natural resources. From minimizing how much packaging we use to investing in renewable energy and partnering to advance sustainable and regenerative agriculture practices – we want to help protect our planet for communities today and in the future.
To secure a thriving food system for the future, the food industry has an opportunity – and responsibility – to help mitigate the impacts of climate change and find more sustainable ways to feed people. I’m proud of McDonald’s commitment to accelerate action and achieve the widespread adoption of more sustainable practices, even as we navigate the impact of COVID-19. Drawing on the support of our franchises, suppliers and producers we can continue to build a more sustainable and resilient industry.
Francesca DeBiase, Executive Vice President, Chief Supply Chain Officer
Our Impact Areas
Packaging & Waste
Sustainable Agriculture & Beef
We were the first global restaurant company to set a science-based target to reduce emissions in our restaurants, offices and across our supply chain. By 2030, we expect to prevent approximately 150 million tons of greenhouse gas emissions from being released into the atmosphere, the equivalent of taking 32 million passenger cars off the road for an entire year. We’re prioritizing action in areas where we have the biggest opportunities for impact – including renewable energy. Our 2019 investments in renewable energy will prevent roughly 700,000 tons of carbon emissions each year in the U.S. – the equivalent of planting more than 11 million trees. In 2020, we also unveiled a first-of-its-kind restaurant designed to create enough renewable energy on-site to cover 100% of its own energy needs on a net annual basis.
We’re testing new packaging and recycling solutions around the globe to help us reduce packaging, switch to more sustainable materials and help customers to reuse and recycle. Today, we are approximately 78% of the way toward our ambition to source all packaging from renewable, recycled and certified sources. We’re also partnering to help drive change at scale. This includes our role as a convening member of the NextGen Consortium, which aims to advance recoverable solutions for the fiber to-go cup system, and our partnership with Loop to test a reusable cup system for hot drinks.
We want to make sure the beef in our burgers contributes to a sustainable food system in which communities, animals and the planet thrive. We know that we don’t yet have all the answers, but we’re engaging with expert groups, farmers and industry to test and scale more sustainable and regenerative practices that help protect nature, reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and secure farmer livelihoods. For example, we have teamed up with the World Wildlife Fund, Walmart Foundation and Cargill to improve grazing management practices across one million acres of land in the Northern Great Plains – one of the last remaining temperate grasslands in the world. These efforts help us reduce GHG emissions and enable us to progress toward our climate commitment.
We’ve set an ambitious goal to eliminate deforestation from our global supply chain by 2030 and are committed to working collaboratively – and urgently – to address the complex challenge of deforestation. We’re making important progress on the raw materials we buy in the greatest volume and where we can have the biggest impact: beef, soy for chicken feed, palm oil, coffee, and fiber-based guest packaging. Our ambition is to drive transformative practices by testing cutting-edge technology, such as satellite mapping, and sharing best practices in our industry and beyond.
We’ve identified and prioritized water savings and improvement opportunities across four key areas of water management – irrigation, public and staff amenities, cleaning and beverage services – and we have partnered with the World Wildlife Fund, the World Resources Institute and our Franchisees and suppliers to develop a holistic water stewardship approach to protect this essential resource. Across the world we already have locally relevant water strategies. For example, our US 20x2020 By Design program in the U.S. aims to use innovative design strategies to reduce energy and water use by 20% by 2020 from a 2005 baseline.