Building Greener Stores
We're always looking for ways to improve the environmental performance of our stores.
One of the best ways to reduce our impact on the planet is to design and build our stores in an environmentally responsible way. We do this by utilizing energy and water saving strategies and by choosing to use green building materials and construction methods.
We're implementing green building strategies in our stores, and have committed to building all of our new company-owned stores to LEED® Certification standards. Utilizing this independent third party certification allows us to track our progress against industry-wide baselines and continue to reduce our overall environmental footprint.
Build all new, company-owned stores to achieve LEED® certification.
What We've Been Doing
Since 2001, we've helped lead the work with other retailers and the USGBC to create a system to certify retail stores and store prototypes. This volume-certification process will pre-certify our green stores at the design, construction and operational strategy level. We'll then be held accountable through spot checks and continued reviews to ensure that we are meeting the high standards we’ve set for ourselves. This is a huge opportunity for the USGBC and for retailers. Traditionally, LEED® certification has been accomplished one building at a time, making it difficult for retailers with hundreds of stores to participate.
Our ongoing efforts to green our stores include a mix of design elements:
- Conserving energy by allowing air-conditioned stores to reach 24°C instead of 22°C on warm days
- Saving water by using high-blast nozzles to clean jugs instead of running water
- Installing low-flow valves throughout the store
- Installing cabinetry made from 90% post-industrial material (where available), with no added formaldehyde
- Improving lighting efficiency
- Using recycled flooring tiles
- Using wood products that are Forest Stewardship Council–certified (where available)
- Using paints with lower amounts of volatile organic chemicals
- Reducing our carbon footprint by sourcing building materials regionally whenever possible