Leading the Way: Top Companies Going Green and Making a Positive Impact

August 13, 2021 in environment, Sustainability

Article summary and Key takeaways: The article discusses the concept of “going green” for companies, which refers to their efforts to adopt sustainable practices and reduce their environmental impact. It emphasizes the importance of sustainability and environmental responsibility in today’s business landscape, driven by customer demand and stricter regulations. The article provides an overview of several top companies that are leading in sustainability, including Patagonia, Tesla, Unilever, Interface, IKEA, Google, Apple, Microsoft, Starbucks, and Adidas. It highlights the sustainability initiatives and positive impacts of each company, such as reducing carbon emissions, promoting renewable energy, responsible sourcing, waste reduction, and social improvements. The article concludes by emphasizing the need for companies across all industries to embrace sustainable practices and take responsibility for their environmental impact to create a more sustainable future.

Definition of “Going Green” in the Context of Companies

When we talk about companies “going green,” we are referring to their efforts to adopt sustainable practices and reduce their environmental impact. This includes actions such as minimizing waste, utilizing renewable energy sources, reducing carbon emissions, and promoting sustainable sourcing and manufacturing processes.

Importance of Sustainability and Environmental Responsibility in Today’s Business Landscape

In today’s business landscape, sustainability and environmental responsibility have become increasingly important. Customers are becoming more conscious of the environmental impact of their purchasing decisions, and they are actively seeking out companies that align with their values. Additionally, governments and regulatory bodies are implementing stricter environmental regulations, putting pressure on companies to adopt sustainable practices.

By embracing sustainability, companies can not only enhance their reputation and brand image, but they can also achieve long-term cost savings through energy efficiency and waste reduction. Moreover, taking responsibility for the environment is crucial for preserving the planet for future generations.

Overview of Top Companies That Are Going Green

There are numerous companies that have made significant strides in their sustainability efforts. While this list is not exhaustive and may vary over time, some well-known companies leading in sustainability include Patagonia, Tesla, Unilever, Interface, IKEA, Google, Apple, Microsoft, Starbucks, and Adidas.


Patagonia, an outdoor apparel brand, has been at the forefront of sustainability and environmental responsibility for decades. Founded by Yvon Chouinard, an avid environmentalist, Patagonia has made it their mission to create products with minimal environmental impact.

Patagonia has implemented numerous initiatives to achieve their sustainability goals. They were one of the first companies to use recycled materials in their products and have been actively working towards reducing their carbon footprint. They have also launched campaigns to raise awareness about environmental issues and have donated a significant portion of their profits to conservation projects.

Patagonia’s sustainability efforts have had a positive impact on the environment and society. They have inspired other companies to follow suit and have shown that sustainability can be profitable. Furthermore, their commitment to fair labor practices and supply chain transparency has set an example for the fashion industry.


Tesla, led by visionary entrepreneur Elon Musk, has revolutionized the automotive industry with its focus on sustainable transportation. Tesla’s mission is to accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy, and they have made significant strides in achieving this goal.

Through their innovative electric vehicle technology, Tesla has proven that electric cars can be as reliable, if not more so, than traditional gasoline-powered vehicles. Their vehicles have zero tailpipe emissions and provide a viable alternative to fossil fuel-powered transportation. In addition to electric vehicles, Tesla has also developed energy storage solutions and solar panels to promote the use of renewable energy.

By paving the way for sustainable transportation, Tesla is contributing to the reduction of air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. Their efforts have also spurred other automakers to invest in electric vehicle technology, further advancing the sustainable transportation movement.


Unilever, a global consumer goods company, has taken a comprehensive approach to sustainability through its Sustainable Living Plan. This plan outlines Unilever’s commitment to reducing its environmental impact while simultaneously improving the lives of people around the world.

Unilever has set ambitious sustainability goals, such as reducing its water and carbon footprint, improving waste management, and promoting sustainable sourcing of raw materials. They have also launched several sustainability initiatives, including the Sustainable Agriculture Code and the Sustainable Packaging Initiative, to ensure responsible practices throughout their supply chain.

Unilever’s sustainability efforts have not only minimized their environmental impact but have also had positive social outcomes. For example, their commitment to fair trade and ethical sourcing has improved the livelihoods of farmers and workers in their supply chain. Unilever’s focus on sustainability has become a driver of growth for the company, showing that doing good for the planet can go hand in hand with business success.


Interface, a global manufacturer of modular carpet tiles, has made sustainability a core part of its business strategy through its Mission Zero goal. Mission Zero aims to eliminate any negative impact the company has on the environment by 2020.

Interface has implemented sustainable manufacturing processes and materials, such as using recycled materials in their products and reducing water consumption. They have also implemented programs to promote the recycling of carpet tiles, ensuring that their products have a circular lifecycle.

Interface’s sustainability efforts have resulted in significant environmental benefits. For example, they have reduced their greenhouse gas emissions and water usage, leading to a smaller ecological footprint. Their commitment to sustainability has also improved their brand reputation and positioned them as a leader in the industry.


IKEA, the Swedish furniture retailer, has made sustainability a strategic priority. They have set ambitious goals to become climate positive, meaning they will reduce more greenhouse gas emissions than they emit, and to transition to a circular business model.

IKEA’s sustainability efforts extend across their entire supply chain, from responsible sourcing of materials to product design and end-of-life recycling. They have invested in renewable energy, such as wind and solar, to power their stores and manufacturing facilities. They have also focused on reducing waste and increasing recycling rates in their operations.

Their green initiatives have resulted in significant positive impacts, including energy and cost savings, reduced carbon emissions, and the development of sustainable products. IKEA has also made sustainability affordable for their customers by offering energy-efficient products at competitive prices.


Google, the technology giant, has made considerable efforts to embrace renewable energy and achieve carbon neutrality. They have set a goal to match their energy consumption with 100% renewable energy purchases for their global operations.

Google has invested in numerous renewable energy projects, such as wind and solar farms, to power their data centers and offices. They have also implemented energy-efficient infrastructure and data center designs to minimize their energy consumption.

Google’s commitment to sustainability has had a significant positive impact on the environment and communities. Their renewable energy projects have helped to reduce carbon emissions and promote the growth of renewable energy sources. Moreover, their investments in local communities have created jobs and supported economic development.


Apple, the technology company known for its innovative products, has made substantial efforts to reduce its environmental impact. They have set a goal to achieve a net-zero carbon footprint across their entire supply chain and product life cycle.

Apple has made significant progress in sourcing renewable energy for their operations. They have invested in large-scale solar and wind projects and have also built their renewable energy facilities. Additionally, Apple focuses on recycling and responsible sourcing of materials, aiming to close the loop for their products and reduce the need for virgin resources.

Apple’s sustainability initiatives have resulted in a significant reduction in their carbon footprint and water usage. By transitioning to renewable energy, they have reduced their reliance on fossil fuels and helped to drive the demand for renewable energy sources.


Microsoft, the multinational technology company, has made a strong commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship. They have set a goal to be carbon negative by 2030 and to remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere than they emit.

Microsoft has made substantial investments in renewable energy, including wind, solar, and hydroelectric projects, to power their data centers and operations. They have also implemented energy-efficient designs and technologies to reduce their energy consumption.

Through their sustainability efforts, Microsoft has achieved significant energy efficiency improvements and reduced their carbon emissions. Their commitment to renewable energy has also helped to accelerate the adoption of clean energy sources in the industry.


Starbucks, the global coffeehouse chain, has taken steps to promote ethical sourcing and environmental sustainability. They have set goals to reduce their environmental footprint, including waste reduction and water conservation.

Starbucks has implemented initiatives to reduce waste, such as offering reusable cups and striving to make all of their cups recyclable by 2022. They also focus on responsible sourcing of coffee beans and have implemented programs to support coffee farmers and promote sustainable farming practices.

Starbucks’ green initiatives have resulted in significant waste reduction and increased recycling rates. Their commitment to ethical sourcing has improved the livelihoods of coffee farmers and helped to protect ecosystems. Starbucks has also pioneered sustainable store designs, using energy-efficient equipment and materials.


Adidas, the global sportswear brand, has made sustainability a core part of its strategy. They have set ambitious sustainability goals, including reducing their carbon emissions and water usage.

Adidas has made efforts to develop sustainable materials, such as recycled polyester and ocean plastic, for their products. They have also implemented sustainable manufacturing processes, such as waterless dyeing and energy-efficient production lines.

Adidas’ sustainability initiatives have resulted in significant reductions in their carbon emissions and water usage. They have also raised awareness about environmental issues and engaged their customers in sustainable practices, such as recycling their old sportswear.


These top companies are leading the way in sustainability and environmental responsibility. Their efforts are not only benefiting the planet but also driving innovation, creating positive social impact, and inspiring other companies to follow suit. By supporting and recognizing companies that prioritize environmental responsibility, we can encourage a shift towards a more sustainable future. It is crucial for companies across all industries to embrace sustainable practices and take responsibility for their environmental impact. Together, we can make a substantial difference in preserving our planet for future generations.

Question 1: What is a company that is going green?
Answer: Tesla Inc.

Question 2: What industries are going green?
Answer: Renewable energy, transportation, construction, and technology industries.

Question 3: What 5 companies are known for their green marketing?
Answer: Patagonia, Whole Foods Market, Seventh Generation, Ben & Jerry’s, and The Body Shop.

Question 4: Who is the most green company?
Answer: There is no definitive answer as it is subjective and can vary depending on criteria and perspective.


About the author 

Sam Martinez

Hello, I'm Sam. With a Ph.D. in Environmental Science from Yale, I've dedicated my life to understanding and advocating for our natural world. My work has taken me from the halls of academia to the front lines of environmental activism. I'm thrilled to share stories from my journey, insights from my research, and ways we can all contribute to a healthier planet.