For Generations to Come: Five Industries That are Changing Their Ways


All over the world, businesses are changing with an eye towards sustainability: realizing the importance of providing a better world for future generations, scientists and entrepreneurs are developing new products and methods with smaller environmental impacts. This article will highlight some of the remarkable ways that various industries are innovating for generations to come.

For Generations to come1. The Beer-Brewing Industry

Several high profile large-scale beer-breweries have recently taken simple, but extremely important steps in refining their packaging processes to reduce the amount of material in their bottles and cans without lessening the amount of product per container. First in sustainability is Anheiser-Busch, which reduced their yearly use of aluminum by 21 million pounds of metal per year.

2. The Footwear Industry

Particularly when it comes to athletic wear, prominent footwear companies such as Nike and Brooks have made huge strides (no pun intended) in the green arena by switching to biodegradable models for their products. Shoes, as quickly out worn, difficult to condense articles, tend to accumulate in large quantities in landfills and trash heaps, and previously have degraded slowly due to their large concentrations of plastic polymers. With new, biodegradable models, such worries are a thing of the past.

3. The Financial Industry

Due in large part to the increasingly digital nature of their operations, large banking conglomerates like Goldman Sachs and Bank of America have, in the past several years, dramatically reduced their environmental footprint. Bank of America has reduced their total paper usage by over 30,000 tons (200,000 trees!) per year by implementing an inter-office recycling program of epic proportions, while Goldman Sachs has invested millions in sustainable energy industries.

4. The Retail Industry

Sometimes saddled with a bad reputation due to certain prominent members, the retail industry as a whole has made an enormous effort in recent years to address the environmental concerns of their customers. In particular, the vast majority of big-box retailers have switched to T5 fluorescent light bulbs in their locations, and have instituted policies preferring recycled corrugated cardboard for their products.

5. The Coal Industry

Long the bogeyman of environmentalists, the coal industry has recently taken massive strides in modernizing their production methods. Chief among these is the use of vibrating screens to improve the efficiency of coal production. Whereas prior, manual methods of coal screening resulted in widespread waste due to frequent human error, the use of automatic electric screens allows coal producers to generate far more energy with less waste.

Informational credit to Elgin Industries

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