Darden Restaurants among top public companies for carbon-disclosure practices

Orlando, Fla. Darden Restaurants ranks among the top 50 S&P 500 companies recognized by the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) for corporate management of its climate-change disclosure practices.

The independent not-for-profit organization featured Darden in its Carbon Disclosure Leadership Index, a key component of the CDP's annual S&P 500 Report, which was released yesterday. The index is based on high scores that reflect good internal data-management practices and an understanding of climate change-related issues affecting Darden.

Darden was the first full-service restaurant company in the United States to submit data to the Carbon Disclosure Project in 2008. Since then, Darden has communicated its systemized plan to reduce energy consumption throughout its operations, including its restaurants, supply chain and distribution system. The plan includes use of energy-efficient technologies and conservation practices such as implementing an equipment power-up/power-down schedule, installing fluorescent light bulbs in its restaurant kitchens and nearly all of its distribution warehouses, thermostat-setting standards and increasing use of rail shipments.

This year, Darden set a corporate-wide goal to reduce its energy and water use per restaurant by 15% by 2015.

"With the help and leadership of our dedicated employee Green Teams and restaurant managers, we will continue to set priorities and employ key energy-efficiency activities in each of our 1,800 restaurants," said Ian Olson, director of sustainability for Darden.

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