Eaton Corporation Focuses on Sustainability

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Eaton Corporation (NYSE:ETN)  has been an icon of the American markets for many years – a definite example of traditional US industry that provides power management, hydraulics, and automotive drivetrain systems among its many offerings.  Cutler-Hammer is one of its most recognizable brands.  Sales in 2007 were $13B. 

For the last 15 years, Eaton has proven that traditional industry CAN focus on sustainability and still remain in business.  Although a press release in early December mentioned a sizable reduction in employee force, the company still projects a positive Q4 net income per share of between $.90 and $1.00.  This is a guidance revision, which Wall Street never enjoys receiving, but is better than most in our current serious economic situation. 

Most recently, Eaton Corporation has added a sustainability section to their website which details the practices and policies they are implementing – and have implemented in the past.  The corporation has set an aggressive goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 18% by 2012 (GHG emissions were reduced by 9.2% in 2007 as measured against 2006).  Other steps that have been taken or are currently planned include:

  1. The creation of a Global Management System of Environment, Safety, Security and Health in August 2005 which provides unified management for these initiatives.
  2. Participation in EPA’s Performance Track, OSHA’s Voluntary Protection Program, and Mexico’s Industrial Limpia program – all voluntary activities
  3. Creation of The Vision Project – which has the creation of a carbon neutral manufacturing plant as its goal
  4. Reduction of total waste generated in 2007 as measured against 2006 levels was 10.5%

It is encouraging to see a stawalt, traditional company such as Eaton adopt an earth-friendly progressive attitude.  Soon, other such companies will have no excuse for not following suit!



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