Protecting Natural Resources
Our strategic giving priorities in the area of natural resources are to support organizations and initiatives that address water conservation, access to clean water and environmental conservation. Recognizing that businesses have a vital role to play in the global issue of climate change, we are committed to continuously improving our performance around this challenge.
Supporting Innovative Initiatives to Conserve Water and to Increase Access to Clean Water
According to a United Nations report, almost half the world's population faces a scarcity of water. While 1.6 billion people have gained access to safe water since 1990, nearly one billion people still lack safe sources of drinking water.
Colgate products require water for their use and production, and we have long-standing programs in place to address water use efficiency in manufacturing.
Engaging in Global Partnerships
Our global giving strategy places a priority on partnerships with global and community organizations focused on water conservation and access to clean water. We seek to share best practices and research within our industry with NGOs, governments and academia.
Some examples include:
In Australia, Colgate partners with Landcare Australia by supporting water quality initiatives in Australia's Murray Darling Basin and by holding employee environmental volunteering days. In 2009, Colgate hosted World Environment Day, which was sponsored by Landcare in conjunction with the United Nations to raise funds and stimulate awareness of environmental issues. Colgate employees also participated in the Coastcares Life on the Edge campaign for community environment projects along the Australian coast.
In addition to supporting charitable organizations dedicated to water conservation, Colgate developed a shopper marketing campaign in 2009 to encourage consumers to save water by turning the faucet off while brushing their teeth. The partnership with Walmart took place in Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua and Costa Rica.
As part of Colgate-Palmolive's Small Steps, Healthier World initiative, we became a national sponsor of the 2009 Great American Cleanup. Colgate provided support and materials, including outdoor work gloves, to the program's estimated three million volunteers who united nationwide to beautify parks, clean seashores and waterways, handle recycling collections, pick up litter, plant trees and conduct educational events.
In Brazil, Colgate donates a portion of the net income from sales of Sorriso Herbal products to the SOS Mata Atlantica (SOS Atlantic Forest) Foundation. Over the past 20 years this non-governmental organization has been striving to preserve the remnants of the Atlantic Forest, which today is less than seven percent of the forest's original size, as well as promote the recovery of deforested areas through tree-planting and community development. Among the projects Colgate's contributions have supported are the development of the Tuzino Center for Environmental Education and Dissemination of Palm Trees; the establishment of a seedling nursery for native tree species in Paraty, located on the coast of Rio de Janeiro; and the creation of an online tool to enable Brazilians to determine the extent of Atlantic Forest in their communities.