What Sets Us Apart
Why Environmental Clarity? Our company name says it all.
Environmental Clarity cofounders Michael Overcash and Evan Griffing, both chemical engineers, launched the company in 2008. They were driven by a common purpose – to enable industry to improve manufacturing processes and product designs, to reduce industrial wastes and pollution, and to facilitate sustainability efforts.
They needed to develop a huge volume of life cycle inventory data and a repository to manage it efficiently. They used engineering- and science- based methods to build highly detailed datasets that allow a user to determine the economic and environmental impacts of a product from the extraction of raw materials through its manufacture. The user can then move from these cradle-to-gate results to the manufacturing process, or gate-to-gate data, and also view the individual process units and fundamental chemistry, if needed.
One of their goals was transparency, so that the origin of the data is known and the gate-to-gate datasets are documented with detailed process descriptions, process flow diagrams, and energy by process units. Evan developed a suite of proprietary software programs to produce results at a higher level of resolution and with greater granularity in their life cycle studies, economic assessments, and custom modeling. They trained a staff of technical advisors in their advanced research methodologies.
Their unique approach is to view chemical supply chains at multiple scales. Resource inputs, such as raw materials, are compiled and quantified from the nano and microscales, where molecular processes occur and where chemicals are synthesized. Inputs can also be observed through the conversions that occur in production processes through environmental impacts, like greenhouse gas emissions, that occur at the megascale.
“We commissioned this life cycle analysis so that we had total clarity on the environmental benefits offered by plastics renewal. These are massive savings, and we’ll seek to continue improving our environmental impact as our work advances.”
That contrasted sharply with many of the large compiled databases where the origin of the data is often unknown or it is proprietary and only the top level of data is shared. Analysis using this data often provides only cradle-to-end-of-life “answers” for entire supply chains, without allowing the user to examine each block within them. The prevalence of “unknowns” makes it difficult to identify the parts of supply chains and the attendant processes that are driving undesirable economic and environmental impacts. For example, Environmental Clarity enables users to spot areas in their processes and supply chains with inefficient energy consumption, which worsens environmental emissions and wastes money.
Their foundational work paid off. Companies with very complex supply chains, like pharmaceutical manufacturers, took notice.
Environmental Clarity partnered with some of the world’s largest pharmaceutical and healthcare companies, Pfizer, GlaxoSmithKline, Merck, and Ascension among them; chemical manufacturers such as Dupont and BASF, energy, renewable energy, and recycling firms; as well as governments, academic institutions, foundations, and industry associations.
The company has conducted thousands of studies, including many in the research and development stage, where 80% of all product-related environmental impacts are determined. Environmental Clarity also provides data and independent, third-party reviews of other practitioners’ studies.
The need for verifiable, credible, and actionable life cycle assessments has never been greater as the global regulatory environment shifts from voluntary to mandatory climate risk disclosures. No company is better positioned to meet the challenge than Environmental Clarity.