CH2M HILL has reduced its environmental footprint for the fourth consecutive year. CH2M HILL’s Environmental Management System (EMS) program focuses on three areas, consumable materials, energy efficiency, and business travel and transportation. The company’s electronic waste recycling program expanded to 86% of US offices, and nearly 70,000 pounds of waste, such as obsolete computer parts, cell phones, and CDs, was recycled.

“Doing the right thing for our clients, our communities, and the environment, has been the focus of CH2M HILL’s operating philosophy since its founding,” says Lee McIntire, CH2M HILL’s Chief Executive Officer. “Our clients expect us to provide solutions and technologies that will help them be more successful and become stronger environmental stewards, while our employees are committed to doing the same with our internal operations. We are proud of surpassing many of our 2008 goals and looking forward to setting the bar even higher in 2009.”

According to CH2M HILL’s EMS manager Brandy Wilson, through the EMS program per person paper usage decreased 21%, four times the goal of 5%. The 19-metric-ton reduction in overall paper purchased from 2007 to 2008 resulted in the following environmental and cost savings:

38 tons of wood (about 267 trees);

640 million BTUs of energy (enough to power 7 homes for a year);

98,498 pounds of CO2 equivalent (9 cars per year off the road);

313,711 gallons of wastewater produced (about half of an Olympic-sized swimming pool);

36,701 pounds of solid waste (about 1 garbage truck);

$35,600 in savings to CH2M HILL.

Formal tele-working programs were implemented in 5 offices and alternative commute programs implemented in 7 offices. The introduction of a Green Meetings Guide and installation of video conferencing software and equipment will further minimize overhead travel.

Goals for 2009 include decreasing paper usage by an additional 10%, establishing environmental criteria for 55% of national agreements, reducing leased office space footprint by 5%, and reducing greenhouse gas impacts of overhead travel by half. The EMS program is identifying ways to reduce annual electricity use at CH2M HILL headquarters by 5% and plans to purchase 10% of electricity from wind power.

CH2M HILL is a US based full-service engineering, procurement, construction, and operations firm and a provider of sustainable solutions.