How organizations organize to respond to the environment
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Human beings for millennia have used energy, initially it was with the use of fire for light, heat, cooking and for safety, and its use can be traced back at least 1.9 million years (Bowman, 2009). However, most of these resources are limited. According to P. E. Hodgson, a Senior Research Fellow Emeritus in Physics at Corpus Christi College, Oxford, expects the world energy use is doubling every fourteen years and the need is increasing faster still and he insisted in 2008 that the world oil production, a main resource of fossil fuel, is expected to peak in ten years and thereafter fall (Hodgson, 2008). More than 90% of greenhouse gas emissions come from the combustion of fossil fuels (Wikipedia, n.d.). Therefore, consumption of fossil fuel resources leads to global warming and climate change. Suncor is a globally competitive integrated energy company, which has a balanced portfolio of high-quality assets, a strong balance sheet and significant growth prospects. In order to address environmental issues, such as greenhouse gas emissions, there are two methods can be applied. The first method is energy conservation, which can be achieved through increased efficient energy use.
Energy efficiency can aid in the maximization of profits in energy companies like Suncor. The second method is to develop and invest in clean, renewable energy sources (sustainable energy) for example solar energy, wave power etc. This is the provision of energy that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs (Suncor Inc., n.d.). Suncor makes environmentally friendly initiatives one of their essential principles (Suncor Inc., n.d.). Suncor’s vision is to be trusted stewards of valuable natural resources, and with the guidance of their values, they will lead the way to deliver economic prosperity, improved social well-being and a good environment for now and for further (Suncor Inc., n.d.).
Environmental Excellence is one of the key drivers of the Suncor Operational Excellence Strategy. The Environmental Excellence Plan(EEP) process involves collaboration between a corporate environmental excellence team, the business units, and internal leadership teams to enable the development and implementation of environmental initiatives across the company (Suncor Inc., n.d.). The EEP will be executed on an annual basis as an integral part of the business planning cycle, thus reinforcing the principle of integrated environmental progress and business performance that underpins Suncor’s sustainability strategy (Suncor Inc., n.d.). Air
Suncor has upgraded their refinery and the total report showed that the air emissions are decreasing in the recent years. Suncor is a member of the Alberta based Wood Buffalo Environmental Association (WBEA), it supports a regional, multi-stakeholder approach to managing air quality. Suncor supports the Peace Air Shed Zone Association (PASZA) as well, they are a founding member of the Alberta Clean Air Strategic Alliance (CASA) (Suncor Inc., n.d.). Water
Suncor views water management as a key part of its EEP, and they have already achieved significant reductions in water consumption at the oil sands operations. Suncor is committed to meeting or exceeding government water quality standards for all waters they discharge to the environment. In their oil sands operations, they return water back to the Athabasca River and ensure the quality standards are stringently met; no tailings waters are normally discharged. Furthermore, Suncor recognizes the importance of preserving the health of the river, as it is the habitat for a variety of species. In fact, their monitoring systems showed that they are regularly putting water back into Lake Ontario that is of better quality than the water they withdrew (Suncor Inc., n.d.). Land and Biodiversity
Suncor is committed to ultimately returning all lands disturbed by their oil sands mining and in situ operations to a natural state as close to pre-disturbance as possible. The company working on a number of fronts to minimize their impact in the boreal such as cooperating with some organizations to protect the environment for wildlife, marking road sections known to have frequent wildlife crossings with sign, minimize the impact on birds due to contact with tailings ponds or other operational ponds etc. (Suncor Inc., n.d.).