J.C. Penney has released its 2013 Sustainability Report detailing actions taken during the fiscal year 2012 to reduce the company’s environmental impact and encourage positive social change, the retailer announced Wednesday.
Despite a dismal year in terms of business, the retailer said it hasn’t faltered on its sustainability efforts.
Myron E. (Mike) Ullman, III, J. C. Penney CEO, said in a statement, “JCPenney has recently experienced a time of transition and change, but we’ve never lost our focus on the importance of being socially and environmentally responsible.” He added, “Supporting the communities we serve goes well beyond philanthropic efforts – it’s also about making mindful decisions in all of our operations, whether in stores, supply chain, customer service centers or international offices.”
The online report summarizes the company’s initiatives in the following areas:
- Stores and Operations – JCPenney has a clear focus on operational efficiency, utilizing programs to manage energy consumption, reduce waste and encourage recycling across all approximately 1,100 stores and 14 logistics facilities. Through the Company’s energy conservation efforts, JCPenney has received ENERGY STAR certification in over 500 locations and earned the ENERGY STAR Sustained Excellence Award for five consecutive years.
- Supplier Social and Environmental Standards – JCPenney is committed to responsible sourcing and improving social and environmental supply chain standards. To ensure these high standards are met consistently, the Company contracted Bureau Veritas (BV) to perform independent social compliance audits. BV began independently auditing in February 2012, and completed 826 audits within twelve months.
- Product Safety – JCPenney sets quality and safety standards for its private brand products. The Company partnered with BV’s Consumer Products Services group to analyze product performance test results and spot potential issues and concerns. The Company encourages national brand partners to meet the same high production standards.
- Ethics – To emphasize the importance of our ethical culture, the Company publishes a statement of business ethics in ten languages to be accessible to associates in the countries where JCPenney does business.
- Employment – With approximately 116,000 associates across the globe in stores, offices and facilities, JCPenney continually celebrates and enriches its diverse and skilled workforce through business resource teams and continuing education.
- Community – James Cash Penney founded JCPenney on the Golden Rule of treating people as you would like to be treated. This principle continues today through the Company’s grants and sponsorships, disaster relief, in-kind donations and community engagement through employee giving and volunteerism. Our customers joined our efforts by rounding up their purchases to the nearest dollar and donating over $10 million to non-profit organizations from July to December of 2012.