Interface—a Georgia-based manufacturer of modular carpet tiles and flooring, works to decrease marine pollution in coastal areas of the Philippines while improving local communities—is one of several winners of the 2016 Secretary of State’s Award for Corporate Excellence (ACE) in Sustainable Oceans Management, the United States Department of State and US Embassy in the Philippines announced.
Interface launched Net-Works, a project to remove discarded nets from oceans to prevent marine life from getting caught in them. Net-Works encourages the recycling of these nets by providing payment to participants in the local community. The recycled nets provided by the program are sent to an Interface supplier, which uses the nylon found in the nets to produce 100-percent recycled carpet yarn. As of 2015, the program has operated in 26 communities and directly benefited more than 4,000 people.
The Secretary of State has awarded the ACE each year since 1999 in order to recognize US companies representing American values in their business practices worldwide. Each of these companies is contributing to the growth and sustainable development of the local economies in which they work. In 2016, the four ACE categories include Inclusive Hiring Practices, Small or Medium Enterprise, Sustainable Oceans Management and Transparent Operations.
Additional winners include: General Electric in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia and McDonald’s Deutschland in Berlin, Germany (Award for Corporate Excellence in Inclusive Hiring Practices); Andela in Lagos, Nigeria (Award for Corporate Excellence in Small or Medium Enterprise); Bureo Inc. in Santiago, Chile and Interface Manila, Philippines (Award for Corporate Excellence in Sustainable Oceans Management); and Sociedad Minera Cerro Verde S.A.A. in Lima, Peru (Award for Corporate Excellence in Transparent Operations)
Interface and the other winners will be presented with the award at the annual ACE ceremony January 5, 2017, at 10:30 a.m. Eastern Standard Time at the US State Department. The event will be globally streamed online at video.state.gov/live/.
The Department of State is committed to working with companies to further responsible business practices worldwide and to recognize their efforts to improve lives at home and abroad.