Starbucks Commits to Building & Operating Greener Stores Globally

Today, Starbucks Coffee Company announced the “Starbucks Greener Stores” framework and a commitment to design, build and operate 10,000 “Greener Stores” globally by 2025. Starbucks Greener Stores framework will be built upon comprehensive performance criteria that help ensure the company’s approach to designing, building and operating its company-owned stores will help set a new standard for green retail. Over the next year, Starbucks will develop an accredited program to audit all existing company-operated stores in the US and Canada against the framework criteria, culminating in 10,000 Greener Stores globally by 2025, encompassing existing stores, new builds and renovations. Starbucks Greener Stores framework will also be open-sourced to benefit the broader retail industry.

“Simply put, sustainable coffee, served sustainably is our aspiration,” says Kevin Johnson, president and CEO of Starbucks. “We know that designing and building green stores is not only responsible, it is cost effective as well. The energy and passion of our green apron partners has inspired us to find ways to operate a greener store that will generate even greater cost savings while reducing impact.”

Announced during The Global Climate Action Summit in San Francisco, California, the “Starbucks Greener Stores” framework is anticipated to save the company an incremental USD $50 million in utilities over the next 10 years. This builds on Starbucks utility cost-savings attributable to Greener Store practices, which over the last 10-years equates to approximately $30 million in saved annual operating costs.

This commitment will further enable and empower more than 330,000 Starbucks partners globally to be informed and engaged in sustainability, adding to a burgeoning group of partner advocates through Partners for Sustainability and the Greener Apron voluntary certification program with Arizona State University.

Starbucks Greener Stores framework will be co-developed by experts including World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and will be audited and verified by SCS Global Services, a third-party verification organization that also oversees Starbucks Coffee and Farmer Equity (CAFE) Practices. This framework will be open-sourced to enable other retailers to engage in this initiative.

“This framework represents the next step in how Starbucks is approaching environmental stewardship, looking holistically at stores and their role in helping to ensure the future health of our natural resources,” says Erin Simon, director of R&D at World Wildlife Fund, US “When companies step up and demonstrate leadership, other businesses often follow with commitments of their own, driving further positive impacts.”

Starbucks has been committed to the development and implementation of scalable green building and operations for more than a decade. In 2001, Starbucks joined with the US Green Building Council (USGBC) to develop the LEED for Retail program, and in 2005, Starbucks opened its first LEED-certified store. Today, Starbucks operates more than 1,500 LEED-certified stores globally across 20 countries – including all 50 states and Puerto Rico – more than any other retailer in the world.

Starbucks investment in a sustainable future continues with the announcement of a green building framework that exceeds construction and design to address long-term, eco-conscious operation. Built on a foundation of the LEED certification program and sustainable operations, the Starbucks Greener Stores framework will offer a comprehensive model and broad environmental scope that is universal in design, but most relevant to the retail industry.

With performance-based standards that incorporate design and extend throughout the life of a store, Starbucks Greener Stores will focus on:

ENERGY EFFICIENCY & WATER STEWARDSHIP: Deploying technologies and practices that ultimately deliver 30% water savings and 25% avoided energy over historic store design practices.
RENEWABLE ENERGY: Powering stores by 100% renewable energy through investments in country-specific solar and wind projects.
HEALTHY ENVIRONMENT: Designing and operating stores to create a comfortable experience that promotes wellness for partners and customers, including lighting, noise, air quality and temperature.
RESPONSIBLE MATERIALS: Ensuring materials and products for stores are responsibly and sustainably sourced.
WASTE DIVERSION: Designing and operating stores to reduce waste.
ENGAGEMENT: Inspiring a culture of sustainability and empowering partners to act, be informed, and engage in sustainability issues and practices.

The announcement builds on Starbucks 30-year track record of focusing on sustainability across all aspects of its business, including: achieving 99% ethically-sourced coffee; committing to eliminate single-use plastic straws globally by 2020; pledging $10 million to develop and help bring to market, a fully recyclable and compostable hot cup; establishing a 5p paper cup charge across all 950 stores in Great Britain to promote reusability; and purchasing renewable energy, currently covering more than 60% of its electricity usage globally, and 100% of Starbucks company-operated stores in the US and Canada; among several other initiatives.

For companies interested in the Starbucks Greener Stores framework, contact [email protected] for more information.

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