Employees are Making a Difference

Small steps add up to big environmental progress

June 26, 2015 in Environment

Environmental scientist Matt McCalley helps develop the tools and information that employees at Boeing South Carolina can use in their work areas to reduce waste and conserve water and electricity.


At a site that features several of Boeing’s larger and more visible environmental achievements, Matt McCalley looks for the smaller, individual actions that will continue driving environmental innovation and progress.

“Employees who do the work every day can spot opportunities to reduce waste or improve a process that might get missed if we only focused on the big projects,” said McCalley, environmental scientist at Boeing South Carolina.

“Small actions can add up to substantial improvements across the entire site.”

Environmental thinking helped guide the design and construction of the South Carolina site, which manufactures the 787 Dreamliner, and has been a driver in ongoing operations since the facility opened in 2011. Innovations include 10 acres (4 hectares) of solar panels on the roof of the final assembly building that help supply the site’s power, solid waste being recycled or reused and not sent to a landfill, and stormwater being captured and reused.

McCalley helps develop the tools and information that employees and teams can use in their work areas to conserve water and electricity, reduce hazardous waste, and expand the recycling and reuse of trash and other material. “They do the work; my job is to help them see the opportunities and take action,” McCalley said.

To help employees learn how to spot waste and improve efficiency in their work processes, environmental training and “waste hunts” are required for the site’s 300 Employee Involvement teams. The focus on continually improving the facility’s environmental performance is a natural fit with the aircraft rolling off the production line, McCalley said.

“The site that builds the world’s most environmentally progressive jetliner should be an environmental leader, too; that’s our mindset.”

To learn more about what Boeing and its people are doing to continue driving environmental innovation and progress, read the company’s Environment Report.