As a leader in environmentally sustainable laundry processes, G&K Services, Inc. takes pride in minimizing the impact of its operations on the environment. G&K takes the occasion of Earth Day to reflect on the progress our company has achieved over the past year.
In the past year, G&K Services completed its transition to innovative laundry formulations that are 100 percent free of nonylphenol ethoxylates, or NPEs. These NPE-free detergents enable high performance cleaning, with less impact on the environment and lower water consumption. G&K now uses NPE-free wash chemistry in all its facilities.
G&K also reduced water consumption by continuing to deploy industry leading water reuse systems in its laundry facilities. In the past year, G&K installed these systems in three more of its locations, reducing these facilities’ fresh water use by up to 40 percent. In addition to lowering water usage, G&K continued to invest in heat recovery systems that reduce natural gas consumption and lower greenhouse gas emissions. The company has now installed boiler heat recovery systems in over half of its laundry facilities. G&K has also started to introduce a heat recovery process for use on dryers.
Within its fleet of delivery vehicles, G&K Services has taken steps to improve fuel efficiency and reduce carbon emissions. In 2013, the company installed a GPS-based telematics solution across its fleet. This system promotes safe and efficient driving behavior and helps limit truck idling.
Together with other fleet efficiency initiatives, the telematics system allowed G&K to reduce total motor fuel usage over the past 12 months, despite an increase in total miles driven. Additionally, earlier this year the company furthered its exploration of alternative fuel vehicles by launching a pilot program to test delivery trucks fueled by compressed natural gas (CNG). G&K will continue to evaluate CNG, and other alternative fuel technologies, for further deployment in its fleet.
The foundation of G&K’s environmental stewardship efforts is a robust compliance program. Over the past year, G&K invested in an improved information system which helps the company manage its environmental obligations and ensure compliance with regulatory requirements. The company has also taken steps to improve its environmental compliance processes and strengthen its team of environmental professionals. These initiatives enable G&K to better manage its environmental programs and identify opportunities for future improvements.
About G&K Services, Inc.
G&K Services, Inc. is a service-focused market leader of branded uniform and facility services programs in the United States, and is the largest such provider in Canada. Headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota, G&K Services has nearly 7,800 employees serving approximately 170,000 customers from 160 facilities in North America.