Environmental Sustainability

Environmental Sustainability

Every day, we know the decisions we make have an impact on our environment. Reducing our footprint by using resources responsibly helps us increase efficiency, save money, and attract and retain clients and employees.

That’s why we’re committed to big goals. Since establishing environmental goals to reduce waste and increase recycling back in 2006, we have continued to look for new ways to improve our sustainability efforts. In 2016, we set new science-based targets to reduce our global greenhouse gas emissions by another 30 percent by 2025 (against a 2015 baseline, measured per square meter). These targets are consistent with limiting global warming to two degrees Celsius, the threshold at which many of the most harmful impacts of climate change can be averted. We also updated our goal to reduce water consumption by an additional 10 percent and added a new recycling goal to achieve an 80 percent rate (both by 2025 and against a 2015 baseline). As of December 2019, we reached a 31 percent reduction in carbon, a 21 percent reduction in water use and we achieved a 72 percent recycling rate. After showing such early success, we are now revisiting the goals to ensure we are making a positive impact on our environment and pushing ourselves to do better. The one remaining goal we have not yet met, our 80 percent waste recycling rate, has a cross-functional task force dedicated to improving employee behavior and recycling as much as possible.

We are also looking to further reduce our carbon footprint, instituting a program aimed at becoming carbon-neutral for all of our global Scope 1 and Scope 2 carbon emissions (direct emissions as well as indirect emissions from electricity) by the end of 2020. This effort will require engagement of our offices globally as we increase our purchase of RECs and carbon offsets, facilitating development of green energy. In addition, we are focused on reducing our carbon footprint on an absolute basis over the next 10 years in alignment with the Science-Based Target Initiative.

Sustainable Partners

With our Risk Assessment Management Program (RAMP), we’re expanding our dialogue with worldwide partners so our supply chain has a low risk of environmental impact. We've built environmental and social factors into our vendor selection, including:

  • Policies covering equal opportunity, child or forced labor, health and safety, slavery and human trafficking, and human rights
  • Supplier and subcontractor audits for social compliance
  • Anti-corruption, and gifts and entertainment
  • Environmental certification
  • Diversity and hiring practices

Engaged Employees

Our employees want to know what we’re doing as a company to reduce our environmental impact, and they want to know what they can do to help.

Our Environmental Sustainability Employee Network is a resource group made up of passionate employees around the world who are focused on reducing our company’s environmental impact. The network serves as a communication tool for employees to share ideas and activities, and it helps management give and receive information about our corporate sustainability goals and initiatives.

Aligned with the goal of waste reduction, the ESEN has partnered with Global Procurement Services to increase employee knowledge of the financial and environmental benefits of eliminating Styrofoam use in our offices globally. In addition to employee participation, the ESEN also serves as a resource to business units looking to broaden their sustainability efforts. This year, the ESEN facilitated employee engagement and education of Global Realty Services’ increased implementation of onsite solar energy generation, supporting additional electric vehicle charging stations.

All of these efforts will continue to expand internationally as employees seek more ways to positively impact our environment.