Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability


During our 140+ year history, A. O. Smith has emphasized innovation, environment, and people as we work to develop sustainable solutions that have a positive impact on the environmentas well as living by a code of conduct which demands honest and ethical standards:  

Innovation 

Innovation PhotoA. O. Smith introduced its first high-efficiency residential water heater in 1976. We believe our company offers the most extensive line of high-efficiency and renewable energy residential and commercial water heaters and boilers in the industry, and our water heating products are highly recyclable. Beginning in 2009, we began to focus on water treatment technology to meet the growing need for fresh, clean water around the world. Our engineers created a patented technology that increases the output of fresh water from reverse osmosis residential water treatment products by approximately 50 percent; 

Environmental stewardship

Chairmans Green Star Award RecipientsEach of our global facilities is charged with making the most efficient use of materials and resources to reduce or minimize environmental impacts. We have developed recognition programs that encourage our employees to think about sustainability and resource conservation as they do their jobs. The most visible is the Chairman’s Green Star Award, which is given annually to the employees of the plant that has achieved the greatest year-over-year reductions in natural gas consumption, electricity usage, and water consumption.  All of our global operations participate in this competition, and their efforts have led to numerous innovative approaches to conserving scarce resources.  In addition, our plants have implemented a number of innovative projects that not only reduce cost but also benefit the environment. In 2011, our Johnson City, TN, plant earned Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) silver certification, a noteworthy accomplishment for an existing facility. Johnson City also is an Energy Star® certified plant. Our Ashland City, TN, plant implemented an enhanced parts washing process that reduced water usage 36 percent, for annual savings of more than 21 million gallons of water. Similarly, our plant in Nanjing, China, modified its pre-treatment processes to find an alternative to phosphorus pre-treating.  This innovation not only reduced chemical discharges, it improved the corrosion resistance of our water heater tanks;

People

United Way PhotoWe have a long history of focusing on the health and safety of our employees; in fact, the company employed its first doctor to provide physical exams to employees and their families in 1915. The President’s Safety Award was established in 1954 and annually recognizes the plant with the most comprehensive and sustainable safety program.  Conducting business with honesty and integrity has been the “Smith-way” for over 140 years. Our Guiding Principles embody our values, and we provide training and resources to insure our conduct is ethical and complies with all laws.  The communities in which we live and work are important to the fabric of our daily life. The A. O. Smith Foundation was founded in 1955 and has provided more than $37 million in financial support to the communities in which we do business.