Skip to main content

News | Stories

2020 Responsible Purchasing Update

May 09, 2021

Our sustainable operations guidelines call for sourcing our office supplies in a way that is environmentally responsible. In the United States, most of our office supplies come from Staples, which defines “eco-products” as those that comply with standards established by third-party programs like Energy Star, Fair Trade and Cradle to Cradle.

In 2020, 34 percent of the office supplies we purchased from Staples were eco-products. This is lower than our average of nearly 50 percent, because of the sharp increase in remote work caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. This drove a decrease in the total number of traditional office supplies used, while purchases of cleaning supplies and protective equipment increased.

We’re concerned about the long-term impacts of plastics on the environment, so we’ve taken steps to cut down on their use in our offices.

Our policies limit purchases of beverages in plastic bottles: we don’t order them for in-house meetings or stock them in vending machines. Many of our offices provide reusable tableware for employee meals.

Of course, the best way to reduce our carbon footprint is to consume less. That’s why our sustainable operations guidelines encourage all offices to seek additional ways to use fewer supplies and resources. For example, consolidating supply orders lowers delivery-related transportation emissions and reduces packaging materials used by suppliers.

Printer paper is our second most used office supply, after food and other break-room supplies. Our sustainable operations guidelines specifically address paper-use reduction in several ways. They recommend using 100 percent post-consumer recycled paper, using electronic documents whenever possible, and printing double-sided when hard copies are needed. Sixty-six percent of the paper products we purchased from Staples in 2020 were classified as having advanced eco-features.

2020 Green Offices Update
May 09, 2021
By applying sustainable design strategies to our new offices and renovations and through our efforts to increase energy efficiency in our existing offices, we’re taking incremental steps towards meeting our goal to achieve climate neutral business operations by 2030.