In the 1960’s a group of people found that large raptors were disappearing from the wild. The reason? The spraying of DDT to kill mosquitoes and other pests caused the shells of their eggs to thin to the point that species simply couldn’t surviv
The researchers decided that something had to be done. They successfully sought a ban on DDT in Suffolk County, Long Island, New York. Then, orming the Environmental Defense Fund, they took their efforts first statewide, then nationwide, succeeding in banning DDT across the board.
This is where that story usually ends. A group of people got together, saw a problem, and fixed it. But the EDF is still incredibly active, headquartering in New York City and working with scientists and policy specialists worldwide.
What are they doing specifically? Thanks to their lobbying program the Obama administration has completed the Environmental Protection Agency’s new rule to get mercury from power plants out of our air, water and food. They worked to cars to average 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025. And they partner with corporations in various ways.
One way is by training and embedding business students in companies to improve energy efficiency. They call it EDF Climate Corps. In 2011, they worked with 78 companies, cities, and universities. The EDF has also partnered with KKR’s Green Portfolio Program which is an operational improvement program that uses an ‘environmental lens’ to assess critical business activities.
“One of KKR’s core strengths is driving operational improvements that build business value,” Dean B. Nelson, Head of KKR Capstone put it. “By focusing on improving environmental performance across KKR’s portfolio and providing a framework to help companies take environmental initiatives to scale, we’re finding new ways to help the portfolio companies save money while simultaneously improving the environment.”
“We believe this initiative will ultimately help our portfolio companies build upon their own environmental efforts while providing a workable example that may encourage other companies to make similar progress,” said Marc Lipschultz, Member of KKR.