Vice president and chief sustainability officer at 3M, Gayle Schueller, spoke to GreenBiz about 3M’s commitment to creating more sustainable products. 

3M is focused on improving lives through applying science. They have three key pillars to achieve this goal:

1. Science for circular

2. Science for climate

3. Science for community

3M has created a sustainability value commitment for every new product launched. According to Schueller that is approximately 1,000 products every year. 3M researchers are looking at ways to include sustainability from the earliest concepts of new product development. This looks at energy efficiency, and the types of materials they are using, for example, materials that are plant based, recycled, or designed for re-use.

3M recently announced their membership with The Ellen MacArthur Foundation. The Ellen MacArthur Foundation works with business, government and academia to build a framework for an economy that is restorative and regenerative by design. The Ellen MacArthur Foundation has created the Circular Economy 100 (CE100) Network which provides a pre-competitive space for businesses to learn, share knowledge, and build new collaborative approaches. 

Gayle Schueller also provided some advice for other businesses that want to be more sustainable when designing their products. Firstly, she recommends analyzing what the company is already doing, for example focus on recycling efforts and how they can be improved. Secondly, she recommends looking at materials that are being used and making sure that the impact of each material is maximized and the least amount of waste is being created. Finally, she recommends partnering with other businesses for the biggest environmental impact. 

Click her to see the full interview: Green Biz