General Dynamics is committed to reducing our global environmental impact
We promote the long-term sustainability of our company for our customers, employees and shareholders by identifying ways to reduce our environmental impact while continuing to deliver quality services and products. This commitment is shared at all levels of our business.
We regularly evaluate how our business strategy comports with our goal of maintaining sustainable environmental practices over the long term. We seek to protect the environment by improving operating efficiency, lowering costs, minimizing waste and emissions, reducing the use of fossil fuels, and ensuring that we remain compliant with applicable environmental laws and regulations in a way that enhances long-term shareholder value.
Each of our businesses has professionally-run Environmental, Health and Safety (EHS) programs to ensure our facilities operate safely and comply with company programs and practices to prevent any environmental impacts. Each business identifies risks and opportunities and develops annual objectives to drive continuous improvement in EHS performance.
We have an active EHS committee that includes experts from each General Dynamics business unit. This group is dedicated to promoting a safety- and environment-conscious culture across the company, monitoring and continuously ensuring compliance with laws, regulations and corporate policies.
As part of our commitment to environmental management, more than 60 of our sites operate under ISO 14001, a voluntary certification of international standards that specifies requirements for an effective environmental management system (EMS).
Our approach to protecting the environment is built around these objectives:
Operate our facilities in compliance with applicable laws and regulations in order to protect the health and safety of our employees, surrounding communities and the environment;
Reduce carbon emissions in order to reach our companywide goal;
Reuse, recycle and minimize the use of natural resources;
Drive out solid waste from our manufacturing processes;
Integrate environmental considerations into business planning and decisions, including design, procurement, production, facilities management and product support;
Promote a workplace in which employees carry a sense of personal responsibility for protecting the environment;
Work with our customers to meet their environmental needs and goals, and manage suppliers consistent with our environmental compliance and management programs; and
Maintain a management system for environmental matters at each business unit that is designed to voluntarily meet internationally accepted standards.
Climate Resiliency and Reduction of Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Strategy. We recognize the importance of addressing climate change. As a result, we identify and mitigate climate-related risks within our existing risk management framework and promote continuous improvement across our global operations. We look for opportunities to create efficiencies, develop sustainable products and services, and invest in technologies that reduce the carbon footprint of our business and our customers. Our decentralized business model and diverse lines of business across multiple states and countries enable each business to develop its own set of operating objectives to reduce GHG emissions. We strive to offer transparency about our environmental impact, as well as our actions to lessen those impacts. We participate in the CDP (formerly known as the Climate Disclosure Project) Climate Change questionnaire, a disclosure mechanism for companies to provide information to their stakeholders regarding sustainability performance, governance, and management of climate risks and opportunities.
Governance. Our board focuses its oversight on material risks and opportunities, including those related to sustainability matters . The Sustainability Committee provides oversight of corporate sustainability management and practices, including those related to environmental impact and climate change. Management is accountable to the board, and incorporates economic, environmental and social considerations in its decision-making to support the company’s operational strategy.
Managing Climate Risk. We manage risks associated with climate change within our comprehensive risk management process, led by senior management and overseen by the board. The board focuses on the most significant current and emerging risks facing the company, including environmental risks that could have a substantive financial or strategic impact. Senior management, including business unit leadership, is responsible for day-to-day risk management since they are best positioned to understand their local climate and environmental risks. They conduct thorough assessments through internal management processes and controls. The CEO and senior management team keep the board and its committees informed throughout the year as needed on specific risks facing the company, including environmental risks. We consider potential climate change hazards, such as coastal flooding and sea level rise, to build climate-resilient infrastructure.
Progress Toward Our Target. We have committed to a companywide target of reducing Scope 1 and Scope 2 GHG emissions by 40% by 2034, from a 2019 base year. The target was developed using standards articulated by the Greenhouse Gas Protocol and the Science Based Targets Initiative and is aligned with efforts to limit global temperature increase to well below 2 degrees Celsius. In order to achieve this goal, each business unit has its own road map to align with the overall companywide target. These pathways consist of initiatives like energy efficiency projects, procuring renewable energy and fuel switching where applicable. We continue to make progress toward our goal, having already reduced Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions by 11% from our 2019 baseline. Since 2008, our GHG emissions have declined by 25%, even as our company has grown and increased revenue by 35%. As a result, we have reduced total GHG emissions per dollar of revenue by 44%.
As a government contractor, our ability to meet our emissions targets depends in part on our customers’ conduct and direction. For example, some of our contracts specify the manner, means or place of performance in ways that constrain our ability to reduce GHG emissions associated with contract performance. In other instances, we perform work at government-owned facilities, where emissions may be attributable to us under disclosure protocols but where we have limited or no ability to change relevant aspects of the facility.
Reducing Scope 3 Emissions
Because we are a government contractor, many Scope 3 emissions attributable to our company under relevant protocols, both upstream and downstream, are driven by policy choices made by our government customers. For example, armored fighting vehicles, which are built to specifications meant to ensure they function as intended on the battlefield, have emission consequences that are outside of our control. Similarly, government procurement requirements often prescribe specific attributes for the supply chain — such as participation of small business, country of origin and other requirements — that have consequences for GHG emissions from our supply base. For reasons such as these, we are currently unable to accurately measure or set a target for indirect emissions across our entire value chain.
Where feasible, we apply our established continuous improvement process to reducing Scope 3 emissions. Most notable are our efforts to reduce emissions throughout the lifecycle of the business jets we manufacture, with five clean-sheet aircraft models introduced over the past six years. We do this by focusing our research and development efforts on achieving better efficiency and fuel performance, ensuring our aircraft can seamlessly use sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) in their operations, and making carbon offsets and book-and-claim services available to our customers. Gulfstream has the most fuel-efficient fleet in the industry, producing the lowest carbon emissions per passenger mile of any aircraft we have previously delivered.
Many of our BUs have codes of conduct for suppliers that specify environmental standards, among other criteria. For example, Gulfstream’s supplier code of conduct requires suppliers to have an EHS system to actively manage risk while protecting the environment and conserving natural resources.
At multiple sites across the company, employees are offered the opportunity to participate in alternative transportation incentive programs that offer public transportation pass discounts and fuel cost subsidies for vanpool participants.
Sustainable Aviation Fuel
We are a leader in expanding the use and availability of SAF in business aviation.
SAF is a low-carbon fuel blend made from agricultural waste and petroleum-based Jet A fuel, with less sulfur and fewer fine particle pollutants than traditional Jet A. Both Gulfstream and Jet Aviation have made SAF a top priority for their customers. On a gallon-for-gallon basis across the lifecycle, SAF can achieve a more than 80% reduction in GHG emissions relative to petroleum Jet A. The renewable fuel meets the strict sustainability requirements of both the U.S. EPA and the internationally recognized Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials (RSB).
Gulfstream was the first business jet aircraft manufacturer to use SAF in daily operations and is supporting new technologies to help the industry get to 100% SAF. Jet Aviation has led the services market in offering access to sustainable fuel for operators of Gulfstream and other business jets. It was the first supplier to offer SAF via a blended fuel option at Van Nuys Airport in 2019 and the first to offer SAF at the World Economic Forum in Switzerland in 2020. Jet Aviation also provides SAF at its Amsterdam and Singapore facilities. Since 2019, Jet Aviation has uplifted more than 10 million gallons of blended SAF to customers.
Jet Aviation also offers a “Book & Claim” program that broadens access to SAF while avoiding the need to transport it physically. Customers can place orders for SAF, after which the volume is tracked and verified, and a certificate of credit for carbon reduction is issued. This promotes production and future availability of SAF for any customer at any time, even in locations where SAF is not yet available.
Both Gulfstream and Jet Aviation are signatories to the World Economic Forum’s Clean Skies for Tomorrow 2030 Ambition Statement. Among the program’s aims are accelerating the supply and availability of SAF so it can reach 10% of the global jet aviation fuel supply by 2030.
Gulfstream Completes World's First Trans-Atlantic Flight on 100% Sustainable Aviation Fuel
Accomplished on November 19, 2023, the flight took place on a Gulfstream G600 aircraft and was powered by Pratt & Whitney PW815GA engines using 100% SAF. This mission showcases the potential for aviation’s future use of renewable fuels, which feature lower carbon, sulfur and aromatics. The data collected from this endurance flight will help Gulfstream and its key suppliers gauge aircraft compatibility with future low-aromatic renewable fuels, particularly under cold temperatures for extended flight durations.
Sustainability Products and Services
Many of the products and services we deliver directly enable our government customers to better understand and manage the environment.
For instance, Mission Systems provides climate-related product and service offerings to the Department of the Interior’s U.S. Geological Survey, the National Aeronautics and Space Agency (NASA), and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). These include specially engineered instruments and communications devices for observation satellites, including the Landsat constellation, which collects data on forests, farms, urban areas and freshwater on the planet. Leaders from across the globe use freely available Landsat data to better understand environmental change, manage agricultural practices, allocate scarce water resources, respond to natural disasters and more.
GDIT’s federal portfolio includes programs supporting the EPA and other environmentally focused organizations. These services include consulting in environmental sciences and public health and support of the Western Climate Initiative, the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative and other EPA initiatives, including its flagship energy-efficiency ENERGY STAR program.
General Dynamics Land Systems is investing in research and development of hybrid-electric-drive combat vehicle concepts that support the U.S. Army’s climate and electrification strategies. The AbramsX, StrykerX and TRX robotic combat vehicle technology demonstrators, debuted at the AUSA 2022 trade show, feature all or some of the following potential capability enhancements:
- Better mobility and transportability via reduced weight
- Extended silent watch
- Silent mobility
- Reduced fuel consumption — 50% less for the same tactical range
- Electric-only turret operation
- Exportable electric power
- Improved acceleration
Land Systems is continuing its electrification innovation by investing in hybrid-electric technology that could be retrofitted to the existing fleets of armed forces around the world. Land Systems’ growing family of robotic vehicles, including the TRX and S-MET, also rely on electric propulsion.
Mitigating Ecological Impact
We take steps at each location to mitigate the environmental effects of day-to-day operations and manufacturing processes. This includes making efforts to reduce our energy consumption. As a large industrial manufacturer, we are able to leverage both our scale and our innovative processes to drive energy efficiency and promote the transition to clean sources of energy.
Many of our BUs have upgraded facilities to replace traditional incandescent lighting with more energy-efficient LED lights. In addition to LED lighting, European Land Systems-Mowag has implemented green roofs and energy-efficient heating systems as part of its coordinated efforts with local governments to reduce environmental impact.
In 2022, Bath Iron Works’ main shipyard entered a power purchase agreement to procure nuclear energy equating to over 79 million kWh. The agreement has reduced its Scope 2 emissions by 19,600 tons.
Water and Wastewater Management
We are committed to responsible and sustainable use of water by endeavoring to obtain freshwater and discharge treated wastewater without negatively affecting aquatic ecosystems. For example, Electric Boat captures all industrial wastewater from its facility in Quonset Point, Rhode Island, for offsite treatment and disposal rather than releasing it into the sanitary sewer system. Each year, more than 100,000 gallons of industrial wastewater are treated before being released back into the sewer system or sea.
To safeguard precious groundwater sources, we rigorously ensure compliance with federal and state regulations, including the EPA’s Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) Corrective Action Program. Since the inception of this program in 1985, we have sampled, monitored and remediated impacted soil and groundwater at facilities throughout the United States, resulting in the remediation of tens of thousands of tons of impacted soils and millions of gallons of impacted groundwater.
Waste and Hazardous Materials Management
We seek to minimize the generation of solid waste by recovering and recycling raw materials where feasible and disposing of unrecyclable waste in a sustainable manner and in accordance with the strictest waste disposal standards.
Jet Aviation to provide Sustainable Aviation Fuel during the World Economic Forum 2024
Jet Aviation secured a supply of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) for visitors during the World Economic Forum (WEF) 2024. This is the second time Jet Aviation has provided on-site SAF in Zurich for visitors to WEF in partnership with Zurich Airport.
GDIT Expands NOAA Supercomputing Capacity for Advanced National Weather Forecasting
GDIT expanded the computing capacity of twin supercomputers, Dogwood and Cactus, by 20%. The expansion will enable the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Weather Service to provide more detailed weather forecasts.
NASSCO Mitigates Environmental Impact
As a member of San Diego’s Working Waterfront, NASSCO is committed to mitigating its environmental impact through initiatives focused on preventing pollution, reducing waste and lowering emissions while increasing efficiency in the yard.