Our approach to environmental sustainability
The focus areas we identified reflect a shift in our environmental sustainability strategy. Our 2012-2013 CSR report described three focus areas: energy reduction and operational efficiencies; supply chain sustainability; and associate engagement.
What has changed?
- Energy management and emissions reduction are separate areas of focus. Thus, we unbundled them from waste reduction and other operational efficiencies.
- While supply chain sustainability remains an important aspect of how we conduct our business, we are placing a greater focus on the areas outlined above. We will continue to collaborate with our suppliers to advance environmental sustainability and improve the health and well-being of the communities we serve and our planet.
- Associate engagement is now an integrated part of our environmental sustainability efforts versus a standalone priority — in large part because our associates have already proven to be very engaged in environmental sustainability. Our new approach involves leveraging our associate engagement by creating opportunities for them to contribute to specific environmental sustainability metrics. Associate engagement is, therefore, a strategy, not a goal, in this area.
In 2014 and 2015, we adopted ambitious environmental sustainability goals for our operations, including:
- A five percent reduction in both energy consumption and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions as compared to 2013 baseline numbers
- A 40 percent diversion rate of waste to landfill
We realized that we could not meet these goals by the end of 2015 and made adjustments accordingly. We extended our deadlines to the end of 2017, publicly confirmed the goals, and announced the new deadline at a White House meeting of government contractors in 2015.
We have a lot of work to do, but we are on track to meet our reduction goals for energy, GHG emissions and waste by the end of 2017.
We began measuring our indirect and direct energy use in 2009. Since then, we have invested in a broad set of energy-efficiency projects. In 2014 and 2015 alone, we implemented 15 energy conservation projects across six facilities. Building on the success of reduction and efficiency projects completed in past years, more than half of the projects put into place in 2014 and 2015 were part of a larger strategy to improve airflow and cooling in our data centers. Our data centers are energy-intensive facilities that have been exposed to a significant increase in traffic and, therefore, represent both a significant risk and opportunity when it comes to energy consumption. Overall, these projects represent approximately 6.5 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) of annual energy reductions with nearly a half million dollars in associated annual cost savings.
Within the past two years, we also purchased and installed more than 17,000 energy efficient lamps and fixtures – 40 percent of those purchases were a direct result of our LED lighting standard that we adopted in 2014. Across all Humana sites, the majority of our lighting is either fluorescent or LED.
We also adopted new best practices for recycling and waste management within our key facilities by introducing single-stream recycling and shared collection bins, which make it easier for our associates to recycle. We introduced more than 3,000 sets of bins into approximately 50 facilities in the past two years; that has helped bring us closer to our waste diversion goal. We plan to continue to expand our program into other facilities while working with our associates to provide ongoing recycling education and resources.
Environmental sustainability data
GJ = gigajoules; MWh = megawatt hours;
CO2-e = carbon dioxide equivalent;
CH4 = methane, natural gas;
N2O = nitrous oxide;
Other = mixed use of incinerator/autoclave/Endo-Thermo-Disinfector
*Includes data received from Humana’s e-waste disposal services vendor; that vendor provided Humana with a more detailed disposal report in 2015 than they did the previous year.
Note: Waste disposal method was determined through disposal contractor reports. Humana does not track or estimate direct and indirect energy sources by heating, cooling and steam. Humana does not sell energy sources. For the purpose of setting inventory organizational boundaries, Humana is utilizing the Operational Control Approach as described by the Greenhouse Gas Protocol: Corporate Accounting and Reporting Standard (World Resources Institute, World Business Council on Sustainable Development).
The global warming potential rates were sourced from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Fifth Assessment Report. Emissions factors were sourced from the following reports and organizations: EPA Center for Corporate Climate Leadership GHG Emission Factors Hub; U.S. Inventory of Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks; International Energy Agency; EPA Waste Reduction Model; and the Center for Resource Solutions Green e-Energy Residual Mix Emissions Rates.
Humana used the following methodologies for the environmental data presented:
| Reduction initiatives and base year information
|| Humana calculates and reports reductions in energy consumption on an annual basis in order to disclose recent progress against the company's corporate reduction goal. Humana first established a base year of 2009 against which we track emissions, although the company’s current reduction target uses a base year of 2013. Acquisitions and divestitures have been the largest driver in triggering recalculations of Humana's base year emissions. In 2009, scope 1 and scope 2 emissions were 9,201 and 119,158, respectively.
| Energy reporting
|| In cases where direct or indirect energy consumption data was not available, we estimated consumption using (in order of descending priority): average energy intensity for the specific facility; average energy intensity for similar facilities operated by Humana; median energy intensity reported by facilities responding to the Commercial Buildings Energy Consumption Survey; and median energy consumption of similar facilities operated by Humana.
| GHG emissions reporting
|| Humana’s corporate GHG emissions inventory measures emissions of carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide and hydro fluorocarbon. For the purposes of setting inventory organizational boundaries, Humana is utilizing the Operational Control Approach described by the Greenhouse Gas Protocol: Corporate Accounting and Reporting Standard (World Resources Institute, World Business Council on Sustainable Development). Emissions factors have been sourced from the US EPA Emissions Factors hub and US EPA Emissions & Generation Resource Integrated Database. Humana does not have any GHG emissions offsets to report.
| Transportation impacts
|| Where available, data were collected from internal tracking systems and aggregated in order to identify transportation-related impacts.
| Waste disposal and diversion
|| Disposal process and quantities were identified and reported by disposal contractors.