Case | HBS Case Collection | July 2009 (Revised January 2014)

Sustainability at Millipore

by Michael W. Toffel and Katharine Lee


This case describes Millipore Corporation's approach to becoming a more environmentally sustainable company. As he prepared for his quarterly meeting with the CEO, the Director of Sustainability needed to develop positions on several issues. Tactically, he needed to recommend whether the company should purchase carbon offsets to help meet its aggressive greenhouse gas reduction targets, and whether to continue publicly reporting its greenhouse gas emissions and strategies despite recent problems. On a more strategic level, he needed to recommend how to take the company's Sustainability Initiative to the next level and consider whether changes were needed to its organizational structure. Finally, he needed to develop a more systematic approach to prioritizing investments in various projects being proposed to improve environmental performance.

Keywords: Investment; Corporate Disclosure; Operations; Corporate Social Responsibility and Impact; Organizational Structure; Natural Environment; Environmental Sustainability; Pollution and Pollutants;


Toffel, Michael W., and Katharine Lee. "Sustainability at Millipore." Harvard Business School Case 610-012, July 2009. (Revised January 2014.) (defining sustainability in a corporate context, managing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions including inventories, targets, disclosure, reduction strategies.)