Profile’s mission is to protect the environment and help customers establish sustainable green space through water and soil management and plant establishment. The company manufactures hydraulically applied mulch products that are made from sustainable materials like recycled wood and paper, are 100% biodegradable, non-toxic and safe for the most sensitive environments. In comparison, many other erosion control companies manufacture plastic erosion control blankets to hold earth and soil in place. These blankets introduce plastic, metal staples and netting that entraps wildlife. Every acre of double-netted blankets contains up to 700 water bottles-worth of plastic and up to 263 pounds of metal staples.
With its sustainable mulch products, Profile not only prevents the introduction of plastic and metal into the environment but has also eliminated billions of pounds of wood and paper from the waste stream and productively returned it to the natural environment. This has prevented that material from entering landfills and has created cleaner water and less pollution around the world.
However, while Profile’s employees and products have been able to make a sizeable difference, the company wanted to take things a step further. Saying that we produce environmentally friendly products only reaches so far. With that in mind, Profile voluntarily created a sustainability scorecard that holds the company accountable for its environmental goals and gives the erosion control and revegetation industry accountability standards and sustainability thresholds while also pushing for the use and development of green solutions. This scorecard is able to better quantify the work Profile has already done and the work it, and the industry, still needs to do.
This scorecard initiative showed that Profile has:
- Recycled more than 3.5 billion pounds of wood and paper, removing it from the waste stream and creating products that productively return it to the natural environment.
- Prevented more than 125 million tons of sediment from entering waterways.
- Helped restore more than 1.5 million acres of land.
- Sequestered more than 100 million tons of carbon thanks to its reforestation efforts.
Profile is the first in the industry to create a non-mandated scorecard showing the impact the company has made and also pushes themselves and others to review their own practices. The scorecard is promoting a dialogue within the industry to rethink harmful practices and replace them with updated, environmentally friendly best practices. That conversation centers on looking beyond the initial erosion control project to the much larger picture of enhancing the greater ecosystem and, ultimately, creating a greener environment for our communities. While the scorecard and challenge to other companies may increase competition and put pressure on Profile, ultimately the environment will win because there’s a new level of responsibility for everyone.
This scorecard initiative has been recognized internationally by several organizations. It was one of 12 efforts to earn an Environmental Initiative Award from the Sustainability, Environmental Achievement and Leadership (SEAL) Awards, a global environmental advocacy organization that honors environmental progress through leadership, accountability and sustainable business practices. It also earned one of 11 Business Intelligence Group’s global Sustainability Initiative of the Year Awards, which honors organizations that have made sustainability an integral part of their business practice or overall mission. Profile’s efforts have also been recognized be the International Erosion Control Association (IECA), the industry’s leading membership organization, and the Go Global Awards.
From this scorecard, Profile recognized that while the work it does increases sustainability across the globe, the company itself had room to improve on its own sustainability practices and implemented several new initiatives. Profile became the first in the industry to adopt product packaging that contains up to 12 percent recycled content, the most available by current packaging vendors, and non-toxic, no Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC) ink. Profile is also partnering with distributors to create a program to close the loop on recycling used bags. This overhaul created new industry-leading environmental goals that no one in the industry had previously been working toward.
Profile also hosted more than 700 Lunch and Learn seminars, reaching more than 10,000 engineers, specifiers and agencies. At these Lunch and Learns, Profile is able to showcase this scorecard, along with its proven sustainable product line, to show how to successfully establish vegetation and prevent erosion using green products. This education is paramount to ensuring the implementation of green solutions. Customers around the world have been able to employ their own sustainable solutions because of these efforts.
Profile also opened a new wood fiber processing plant in North Carolina that includes state-of-the-art greenhouses for research and development of the next generation of sustainable erosion control products, and new educational facilities that offer opportunities for customer and employee training. The facility is in close proximity to Profile’s raw ingredients, allowing the company to keep trucking to a minimum, further reducing its carbon footprint.
Since implementation, these initiatives have resonated with Profile’s employees and have empowered them to create a purpose statement and values that feature sustainability at its core. Profile’s purpose statement is: “To protect the environment and to improve the places we live, work, and play by providing superior sustainable solutions that manage soil and water, support vegetation, and provide productivity to our customers.” Profile’s customers have also shown appreciation for these sustainable solutions, as it aligns with their goals and helps them to earn project bids by showing that they want to put the environment first.