NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today, American Express Company (NYSE:AXP) announced a $250,000 grant to Ocean Conservancy in support of its International Coastal Cleanup and Trash Free Seas programs. The International Coastal Cleanup, taking place Saturday, September 15, is the world’s largest single-day volunteer effort to remove trash from local waterways, beaches, lakes and rivers. As part of the grant, American Express employees will also participate in five coastal cleanup events in the U.S., Italy, Malaysia and Australia this fall.
Earlier this year, American Express, in partnership with Parley, an organization focused on combating marine plastic pollution, announced a collaboration to raise awareness of this issue with Card Members, business partners and employees. As part of the effort, American Express announced plans to launch the first-ever American Express Card manufactured primarily from recovered plastic found in the oceans and on the coasts.
“Oceans, lakes and rivers play a vital role in the lives of our Card Members and employees as well as the health of our communities and our planet,” said Timothy J. McClimon, president, American Express Foundation. “We want to be a part of the movement to protect our waterways and their wildlife for the enjoyment of future generations.”
“We are thrilled that American Express will #suituptocleanup our ocean during the International Coastal Cleanup on September 15,” said Nicholas Mallos, director, Ocean Conservancy’s Trash Free Seas program. “American Express’ support will help volunteers remove more than 20 million pounds of trash and plastic from the world’s beaches and coasts. But cleanups are only one – important – aspect of the solution. Businesses around the world have a role to play in tackling the ocean plastic crisis, and American Express is serving as an example of corporate leadership on this issue. We look forward to their continued engagement in the fight for trash free seas.”
Ocean Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup has assembled nearly 13 million volunteers and diverted 250 million pounds of trash from the ocean globally. An estimated 8 million metric tons of plastic waste flows into the ocean annually, causing harm to wildlife, polluting beaches, and even permeating food from the ocean. Plastics never fully biodegrade but break up into smaller pieces called microplastics, which accumulate in the marine environment. Scientists predict that without concerted global action, there could be one ton of plastic for every three tons of fin fish in the ocean by 2025. The International Coastal Cleanup and other Ocean Conservancy programs aim to roll back the hazardous effects of ocean pollution.
In addition to encouraging American Express employees to volunteer during the International Coastal Cleanup, Ocean Conservancy and American Express will arrange five Coastal Cleanup events, where approximately 1,500 American Express employees are expected to participate. These events will be held in: Sunrise, FL (Sept. 29) and Rockaway Beach, NY (Oct. 9). Other events are slated in Rome, Italy; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; and Sydney, Australia in October and November.
As part of its corporate responsibility program, American Express backs initiatives that preserve natural resources and limit the environmental impact of its operations. In 2017, the company:
- Reduced its carbon footprint for scope 1 and 2 emissions by 50 percent compared to 2011;1
- Achieved carbon neutrality for its employee business travel emissions (third-party air, rail and rental cars) through carbon offsets;
- Used renewable energy to power the company’s U.S. data centers and New York City headquarters, including through purchased renewable energy certificates;
- Operated in green buildings – over 45 percent of the company’s global real estate footprint was green building certified;2 and
- Provided $3.9 million in support of the environment and wildlife through the company’s Gift Matching and Serve2Gether programs.
Please visit this page to learn more about American Express’ sustainability efforts.
About American Express
American Express is a globally integrated payments company, providing customers with access to products, insights and experiences that enrich lives and build business success. Learn more at americanexpress.com and connect with us on facebook.com/americanexpress, instagram.com/americanexpress, linkedin.com/company/american-express, twitter.com/americanexpress, and youtube.com/americanexpress.
Key links to products, services and corporate responsibility information: charge and credit cards, business credit cards, travel services, gift cards, prepaid cards, merchant services, Accertify, InAuth, corporate card, business travel, and corporate responsibility.
About Ocean Conservancy
Ocean Conservancy is working to protect the ocean from today’s greatest global challenges. Together with our partners, we create science-based solutions for a healthy ocean and the wildlife and communities that depend on it. For more information, visit oceanconservancy.org, or follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.
1 Based on the scope 2 market-based emissions methodology.
2 Green building certified square footage is total square footage of leased or owned facilities actively occupied by American Express (excluding parking lot square footage) certified under a global or locally recognized third-party environmental building rating system as meeting their performance criteria (LEED, BREEAM, NABERS, GreenMark, and Energy Star).