A Q&A With Eastman
Chemical’s Mark Cox
For major chemical manufac- turers, having a sustainability program has become the new
norm and Eastman Chemical Company
is no exception. In fact, the company’s
track record of sustainability efforts
even include Environmental Protection
Agency awards and recognition.
And as Mark Cox, senior vice
president and chief manufacturing
and engineering office at Eastman
explains, going green isn’t just about
corporate responsibility or feel-good
PR — it’s a boost for the mega-manu-
facturer’s bottom line.
As one of the largest chemical companies in the U.S., Eastman employs
about 15,000 people at around 50
facilities and made about $9.4 billion
in sales in 2013. The company’s portfolio is vast and includes adhesives
and plasticizers, fibers, specialty fluids
and advanced materials in the transportation, construction, durable goods,
and health and wellness markets.
Eastman also made a name for itself as
a company that responds to consumer
demand for more chemically conscious
products in 2007 when it released its
Tritan water bottle with a “BPA-free
But it’s been the slew of sustainable
measures behind the scenes that have
helped reduce costs.
In its 2014 Sustainability Report,
the company outlines its “big picture”
targets and its multi-pronged approach
to reducing its environmental impact.
Some goals — such as reducing 20
percent of greenhouse gas emissions
by 2018 and reducing 15 percent of
its hazardous waste by 2020 — are
listed as being on schedule. But, the
company admits, other goals still need
improvement, such as a plan to develop new businesses utilizing renewable
feedstocks and reducing 20 percent of
energy intensity by 2020.
Being transparent and honest about
where is the company is at is what
Cox says has helped the company at
successfully implement its comprehensive strategy.
Here, he talks more about how
Eastman has reduced energy costs at