Managers and employees at every level are responsible and accountable for our overall environmental compliance and stewardship. It is the responsibility of every team member to do his or her part to protect our environment by working in compliance with the law, following the policies, practices and procedures established by the company, and by raising any concerns they might have about environmental issues.
Many national and local laws protect the environment from industrial emissions and hazardous substances. These laws differ among different jurisdictions and subject matter. We expect our employees and vendors to respect and comply with these legal protections. In addition, we have an enterprise-wide environmental health and safety policy governing our U.S. operations.
We have relatively limited exposure to environmental risks in our operations. However, we have begun to quantify and disclose our environmental impact along with our efforts to mitigate our environmental impact. Please see below for more information about our environmental data, waste and recycling efforts, water use, climate change initiatives, protection of biodiversity and critical habitats, and investments in IT systems to minimize our environmental impact.
We have estimated our water, electric, and natural gas usage at our U.S. facilities for calendar years 2018 and 2019 below. This usage data is based on information provided by our utility providers and facility owners to us.
Based on this environmental data, we have calculated the Scope 2 greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) for our facilities using the greenhouse gas emissions factors from the Environmental Protection Agency’s Center for Corporate Climate Leadership. Scope 2 emissions are indirect emissions from the generation of purchased energy such electricity and heat purchased from a utility provider. Currently, none of our facilities is required to report GHG emissions to any governmental agency because the threshold for reporting is 25,000 metric tons.
Below are the Scope 2 greenhouse gas emissions from our electricity usage at our U.S. facilities:
Below are the Scope 2 greenhouse gas emissions from our natural gas usage:
Our travel provider has also calculated the Scope 3 GHG emissions for our U.S. employees’ flights, as shown in the table below. Scope 3 GHG emissions are indirect emissions from sources that are not owned or directly controlled by a business but are related to the business’s activities.
All of our facilities are classified by the Environmental Protection Agency as either Very Small Quantity Generators or Small Quantity Generators of hazardous waste, and they are in compliance with and follow all federal, state and (if applicable) local regulations regarding hazardous waste. Among other things, each facility has appropriate storage, handling and disposal procedures, including segregated storage areas, container labeling, recordkeeping and employee training procedures in place.
Our facilities generate electronic waste while we conduct our business, such as computers, monitors, printers, hard drives and copiers. Due to ITAR (International Traffic in Arms Regulations) requirements, and because of proprietary information that may have been stored on some of these devices, certain of our electronic devices must go through a specialized incineration process. Other electronic waste is processed by a licensed electronics recycler.
Our facilities handle universal waste onsite. Universal Waste is a general descriptive term used to describe waste that is generated by a large, diverse population. Our main types of universal waste consist of fluorescent lamps and spent batteries. These wastes are processed by a licensed waste hauler and brought to a licensed recycling facility. All Mercury facilities are in compliance with and follow all federal, state and local regulations regarding universal waste.
We recycle varying items on a location specific basis. These items consist of paper, plastic and aluminum, which are used mainly in office and employee break areas. There are varying types of scrap metals from our manufacturing processes that are made available for recycling and reclamation by licensed reclamation facilities. These metals include but are not limited to lead, tin and aluminum and certain precious metals. We are continually seeking more efficient ways to recycle and/or reclaim as many metals and precious metals as possible to avoid disposing of these materials in landfills.
Mercury recognizes that water is an important resource for humanity that must be safeguarded for the sustainable development of our world. Water is necessary for human survival, sanitation, air conditioning, heating, and a myriad of other uses, and its scarcity or withdrawal can have devastating impacts for communities.
We use water in our air conditioning and heating systems, cafeterias, and in general office facilities, such as in bathrooms and water fountains. Mercury otherwise does not intensively use water in our business. Our facilities are also not located in areas with high levels of water stress or in areas that lack sufficient water for human use. And we do not have any business practices that would require the use of any specialized waste water treatment facilities.
We aim to reduce our relatively minor water consumption in line with sustainable development goals for similar business. Our facilities and business teams work to minimize water consumption by assessing our requirements and finding solutions that reduce any wasted water use. For example, we push for the installation of low-flow plumbing fixtures and touchless sink faucets wherever feasible, which can create large water savings over time with relatively little cost.
Mercury encourages its employees, customers, suppliers and other businesses to conserve water as much as possible.
We recognize that climate change is an urgent threat to the world and may have a significant and lasting impact on global economic growth. Scientists have concluded that rising levels of greenhouse gas emissions are linked to global warming through the expansion of Earth’s natural greenhouse effect. The consequences of increased average temperatures can include irreversible changes in major ecosystems and more frequent extreme weather events, such heatwaves, droughts, floods, and rising sea levels. These changes and events can have devastating impacts on all aspects of society, and the repercussions may only be avoided by governments, businesses, and societies working together to address the threat.
We believe in taking meaningful action to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate our impact on the environment as part of the global environmental effort. Mercury’s climate change initiatives have three key goals:
- Reducing Emissions: We seek to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions by implementing environmental initiatives that are proven and cost-effective. We focus our efforts in areas throughout our supply chain that create significant benefits for all stakeholders, such as increasing the energy efficiency of our products and decreasing our fossil fuel usage.
- Innovating In Our Business: Mercury is committed to Innovation That Matters® in our entire business, including in our environmental initiatives. We believe that innovative solutions provide the best opportunity for companies to address the specific requirements of their businesses rather than relying on one-size-fits-all solutions.
- Monitoring Our Impact: We take responsibility for our carbon footprint by measuring our greenhouse gas emissions and other environmental data. We use this data to track the impact of our company on the world and to assess our environmental initiatives going forward.
The Compensation Committee of our Board of Directors is responsible for reviewing and overseeing Mercury’s environmental impact and initiatives. Our Executive Leadership Team oversees and implements our environmental initiatives with a view towards demonstrating our commitment to good corporate citizenship and responsible business practices.
While we have relatively limited exposure to environmental risks in our own operations, we regularly assess the impact of environmental matters on our business, including:
- Supply Chain Operations: Our business teams work to assess customer requirements and supplier capabilities and then provide products and solutions that are optimized for mission success. We are focused on satisfying these requirements with minimal wasted materials, unnecessary energy expenditures or excess carbon emissions in the process, which we believe will help ensure that our environmental impact is minimized. We do not expect climate change to have a material adverse impact on our supply chain operations in the short-, medium- or long-terms relative to other companies in our industry.
- Regulatory Changes: Our operations and legal teams evaluate environmental laws and regulations to ensure our continued compliance in the jurisdictions where we do business. We do not expect any current or emerging laws or regulations to have a material adverse effect on our operations or financial position relative to other companies in our industry at any point, such as laws or regulations that would be required to limit global warming to less than two degrees as proposed under the Paris Agreement.
- Talent Management: We recognize that climate change may have an impact in the long-term on the ability of companies to attract talent due to environmental changes that affect the types of companies that employees desire to work for and where employees will want to work. We pride ourselves on being an environmental leader amongst our peers and expect our reputation to continue to attract employees to us at all points in the future.
You can find more information about our environmental stewardship practices and data on this Environmental Stewardship page of our website.
Biodiversity and Critical Habitats
Mercury believes in protecting the biodiversity and critical habitats in our world. Pollution, the destruction of ecosystems and climate change have contributed to a dramatic reduction in global biodiversity as numerous species have gone extinct or had their population sizes severely reduced.
Mercury does not operate in areas with critical habitats that may contain endangered or threatened species, as determined by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. We also do not operate in areas with a recognized high biodiversity value or high conservation value based on our review of non-governmental organizations’ assessments of local ecosystems, including the United States Geological Survey’s Protected Area Database.
While we do not currently have operations that threaten biodiversity or critical habitats, we use a risk management process that assesses the environmental risks of our operations on the world, including risks relating to:
- the proximity of facilities to critical habitats or areas with high biodiversity or conservation value;
- the impact of operations on those habitats or areas;
- the types of species in those habitats or areas, such as species that are endangered, threatened, or at-risk which we need heightened protections; and
- international, national, or local norms or regulations, including the standards of the Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the Department of the Interior.
This process is designed to ensure that our company is a steward of the environment while we continue our critical operations for the nation’s aerospace and defense programs.
Investments in IT Systems to Connect Mercury While Reducing Travel
We have made a substantial investment in IT infrastructure as part of our One Mercury effort to connect employees using video conferencing technology, including by Skype and Teams video at employee workstations and in conference rooms. This has helped to create a One Mercury atmosphere by team members’ ability to see each other on calls while at the same time reducing the environmental impact of travel between our facilities.