Customer Stories - Raytheon

Raytheon Technologies uses waste metering technology to achieve 2025 sustainability goals

Customer Stories - Raytheon

Raytheon Technologies uses waste metering technology to achieve 2025 sustainability goals

Raytheon

Raytheon Technologies, a leading multinational company in aerospace, defense and intelligence, has been publishing an annual corporate sustainability report since 2009. They’re currently working to meet and exceed the following goals by 2025:

  • 10% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.
  • 10% reduction in water use.
  • 10% reduction in waste to landfill incineration.
  • 100% implementation of operational sustainability best management practices.

The company is made up of four separate business units, including Raytheon Intelligence & Space. Headquartered in Arlington, Virginia, RI&S develops advanced sensors, training, and cyber and software systems with more than 37,000 employees around the world and $15 billion in adjusted pro forma annual revenue 2020.

Dimitri Shanin and his counterpart Maryl Vanden Bos set the global sustainability strategy for Raytheon Intelligence & Space and lead all sustainability metrics and programs across waste and recycling, water consumption, energy conservation and greenhouse gas emissions, and environmental compliance and management. It’s their job to make sure RI&S is doing its part to meet those 2025 goals.

“At RI&S, we take pride in tackling the world’s toughest problems — any domain, any challenge,” said Shanin, associate director of Sustainability Strategy and Operations at Raytheon Intelligence & Space. “We live in a finite world, so sustainability and conservation are dual challenges for the future of our planet. What drives me is the need for innovation and holistic thinking as we integrate solutions into everything we do.”

Data and progress are tracked and reported not only in their annual CSR reports, but in quarterly reports to the board of directors, on Raytheon Technologies’ public websites, and now through the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board.

“Transparency is key,” said Maryl Vanden Bos, Sustainability Programs regional lead for RI&S. “Because we track and report our progress, we can hold ourselves accountable as responsible global citizens and make the case for a lot of new, innovative sustainability programs.”

Standardizing waste measurement and management

In waste and recycling, Shanin, Vanden Bos and their teams bring their holistic approach to managing operational efficiency and sustainably end-to-end:

  • Analyzing how they source upstream materials.
  • Reducing waste from manufacturing, labs and offices through training and tailored approaches and best practices.
  • Disposing of downstream waste responsibly.

So far, the RI&S team has achieved TRUE Zero Waste certification at eight of their sites in the U.S.

“Our zero-waste mentality set us up to look for next-level solutions,” Shanin said. “We know we want to divert waste in an environmentally responsible way, but we also have to meet operational and financial goals. That led us to Compology.”

Compology’s waste metering technology delivers RI&S the data and automated insights it needs to cut waste and recycling costs while improving waste diversion and reducing carbon emissions, core tenets of their 5-year corporate sustainability goals. Since they are a defense contractor with strict policies on data sharing and image capture, the team spent a year doing background work and due diligence to ensure that Compology was compliant with their security, data collection and exchange, and image policies.

Real-time data has always been tough when it comes to waste. These are things that we’ve had to tackle by hand, including tracking bin fullness and observing what’s going on in dumpsters. We were dependent on our waste haulers and any data they might have. But now, our team has standardized data and real-time visibility across our sites. It’s been eye-opening.

Maryl Vanden Bos, Sustainability Programs regional lead at Raytheon Technologies

Implementing waste metering to create efficiencies and cost savings

Initial data has shown that across RI&S sites, the average level of fullness at pickup is nearly 60%, and that the company had been overestimating their waste production.

“In the past, it was a largely manual process of estimation, and we got used to living with low quality and incomplete information, because there wasn’t a better way of collecting and making sense of waste data,” Shanin said.

Now Vanden Bos and Shanin are driving waste metrics to match their other sustainability programs in terms of data consistency, availability and standardization. 

One of their first projects — working with eight key RI&S sites from California and Colorado to Texas and Florida — was rolling out waste metering to hold haulers more accountable to contracted service. With the help of Compology, RI&S found 30% of scheduled pickups are missed at these sites.

“We’re seeing data that we’ve never seen before, whether we’re getting an unscheduled pickup, or a missed pickup,” Vanden Bos said. “We’re contracting for certain schedules and can now follow up to ensure we’re only paying for the level of service we need.”

RI&S is now also using waste metering to rightsize waste service levels based on actual waste production, with an estimated annual savings of 25-35%. 

60%

FULLNESS AT PICKUP

30%

PICKUPS MISSED

25%-35%

COST SAVINGS

Seeing what’s inside

Another initiative is to decrease uncollapsed cardboard from entering recycling dumpsters, as it wastes dumpster space while creating inefficient and costly recycling hauls. Site teams and custodial staff now get reports and alerts when uncollapsed cardboard enters a dumpster to break it down before the dumpsters leave the site.

The same technology capabilities apply to keeping unwanted materials or contamination out of dumpsters, such as trash bags that end up in the cardboard dumpsters or construction and demolition debris that end up in the wrong bin. Site teams keep track of these contamination trends and roll out communication and engagement campaigns to improve behaviors site-by-site. This behavior change reduces risk of contamination penalties often charged by haulers, improves government compliance, increases diversion rates and cleans up recycling streams.

There is now greater alignment of government policy and pressure from shareholders for companies to report high-quality data for the most impactful Environmental, Social and Governance programs. And RI&S is now fielding a lot of specific requests from employees, customers, investors and shareholders, signaling a shift in how they view sustainability metrics as an important part of reporting business data. 

In a sustainability function at a large company, teams like ours know how to make a business case and tie sustainability programs to a return on investment. It’s an exciting, important time for this type of alignment, because at RI&S, we believe that how we get results is just as important as the results themselves.

Dimitri Shanin, associate director of Sustainability Strategy and Operations

Raytheon Technologies, a leading multinational company in aerospace, defense and intelligence, has been publishing an annual corporate sustainability report since 2009. They’re currently working to meet and exceed the following goals by 2025:

  • 10% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.
  • 10% reduction in water use.
  • 10% reduction in waste to landfill incineration.
  • 100% implementation of operational sustainability best management practices.

The company is made up of four separate business units, including Raytheon Intelligence & Space. Headquartered in Arlington, Virginia, RI&S develops advanced sensors, training, and cyber and software systems with more than 37,000 employees around the world and $15 billion in adjusted pro forma annual revenue 2020.

Dimitri Shanin and his counterpart Maryl Vanden Bos set the global sustainability strategy for Raytheon Intelligence & Space and lead all sustainability metrics and programs across waste and recycling, water consumption, energy conservation and greenhouse gas emissions, and environmental compliance and management. It’s their job to make sure RI&S is doing its part to meet those 2025 goals.

“At RI&S, we take pride in tackling the world’s toughest problems — any domain, any challenge,” said Shanin, associate director of Sustainability Strategy and Operations at Raytheon Intelligence & Space. “We live in a finite world, so sustainability and conservation are dual challenges for the future of our planet. What drives me is the need for innovation and holistic thinking as we integrate solutions into everything we do.”

Data and progress are tracked and reported not only in their annual CSR reports, but in quarterly reports to the board of directors, on Raytheon Technologies’ public websites, and now through the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board.

“Transparency is key,” said Maryl Vanden Bos, Sustainability Programs regional lead for RI&S. “Because we track and report our progress, we can hold ourselves accountable as responsible global citizens and make the case for a lot of new, innovative sustainability programs.”

Standardizing waste measurement and management

In waste and recycling, Shanin, Vanden Bos and their teams bring their holistic approach to managing operational efficiency and sustainably end-to-end:

  • Analyzing how they source upstream materials.
  • Reducing waste from manufacturing, labs and offices through training and tailored approaches and best practices.
  • Disposing of downstream waste responsibly.

So far, the RI&S team has achieved TRUE Zero Waste certification at eight of their sites in the U.S.

“Our zero-waste mentality set us up to look for next-level solutions,” Shanin said. “We know we want to divert waste in an environmentally responsible way, but we also have to meet operational and financial goals. That led us to Compology.”

Compology’s waste metering technology delivers RI&S the data and automated insights it needs to cut waste and recycling costs while improving waste diversion and reducing carbon emissions, core tenets of their 5-year corporate sustainability goals. Since they are a defense contractor with strict policies on data sharing and image capture, the team spent a year doing background work and due diligence to ensure that Compology was compliant with their security, data collection and exchange, and image policies.

Real-time data has always been tough when it comes to waste. These are things that we’ve had to tackle by hand, including tracking bin fullness and observing what’s going on in dumpsters. We were dependent on our waste haulers and any data they might have. But now, our team has standardized data and real-time visibility across our sites. It’s been eye-opening.

Maryl Vanden Bos, Sustainability Programs regional lead at Raytheon Technologies

Implementing waste metering to create efficiencies and cost savings

Initial data has shown that across RI&S sites, the average level of fullness at pickup is nearly 60%, and that the company had been overestimating their waste production.

“In the past, it was a largely manual process of estimation, and we got used to living with low quality and incomplete information, because there wasn’t a better way of collecting and making sense of waste data,” Shanin said.

Now Vanden Bos and Shanin are driving waste metrics to match their other sustainability programs in terms of data consistency, availability and standardization. 

One of their first projects — working with eight key RI&S sites from California and Colorado to Texas and Florida — was rolling out waste metering to hold haulers more accountable to contracted service. With the help of Compology, RI&S found 30% of scheduled pickups are missed at these sites.

“We’re seeing data that we’ve never seen before, whether we’re getting an unscheduled pickup, or a missed pickup,” Vanden Bos said. “We’re contracting for certain schedules and can now follow up to ensure we’re only paying for the level of service we need.”

RI&S is now also using waste metering to rightsize waste service levels based on actual waste production, with an estimated annual savings of 25-35%. 

Seeing what’s inside

Another initiative is to decrease uncollapsed cardboard from entering recycling dumpsters, as it wastes dumpster space while creating inefficient and costly recycling hauls. Site teams and custodial staff now get reports and alerts when uncollapsed cardboard enters a dumpster to break it down before the dumpsters leave the site.

The same technology capabilities apply to keeping unwanted materials or contamination out of dumpsters, such as trash bags that end up in the cardboard dumpsters or construction and demolition debris that end up in the wrong bin. Site teams keep track of these contamination trends and roll out communication and engagement campaigns to improve behaviors site-by-site. This behavior change reduces risk of contamination penalties often charged by haulers, improves government compliance, increases diversion rates and cleans up recycling streams.

There is now greater alignment of government policy and pressure from shareholders for companies to report high-quality data for the most impactful Environmental, Social and Governance programs. And RI&S is now fielding a lot of specific requests from employees, customers, investors and shareholders, signaling a shift in how they view sustainability metrics as an important part of reporting business data. 

In a sustainability function at a large company, teams like ours know how to make a business case and tie sustainability programs to a return on investment. It’s an exciting, important time for this type of alignment, because at RI&S, we believe that how we get results is just as important as the results themselves.

Dimitri Shanin, associate director of Sustainability Strategy and Operations

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