Walmart Announces Reusable Bag Push Among Sustainability Initiatives
For the first time, Walmart’s checkout carousels in the U.S. will include reusable bags available for customers to purchase. The retailer made the announcement this week at its 2019 sustainability milestone summit. The aim of this new campaign is to help reduce plastic waste and increase customer convenience by placing reusable bags in easy-to-find and highly frequented sections of its stores. As part of the launch, Walmart is rolling out a new assortment of reusable bags that are made using post-consumer recycled content.
The reusable bag initiative will roll out to stores next month, following Walmart’s recent announcement of various plastic waste reduction goals designed to advance the sustainability of its private brand packaging by making it 100 percent recyclable, reusable or industrially compostable by 2025.
The retailer also shared several other announcements and updates on its sustainability initiatives at the summit. The event marks the two-year anniversary of Project Gigaton, a platform in which Walmart is working with suppliers to avoid one billion metric tons, a gigaton, of emissions from global value chains by 2030. As part of the summit, Walmart Canada announced it is joining Project Gigaton, making it Walmart Inc.’s third international market to work with suppliers to reduce emissions.
Walmart also shared an update on its responsible sourcing work alongside NGOs, industry groups, governments and suppliers, with the aspiration to improve the lives of workers in the global apparel supply chain with a particular focus on women, and its efforts to increase the availability of electric vehicle charging stations at it stores and clubs across the U.S. As of 2018, Walmart has EV chargers available at retail locations across 29 states. Walmart also outlined its progress toward its goal of being powered by 100 percent renewable energy, and to power 50 percent of its operations with renewable energy by the end of 2025. Over the past year, Walmart completed contracts for 136 new solar and wind projects, which will supply the company with an additional estimated 2.14 billion kilowatt hours of renewable energy annually.