This week Kohl’s issued its first annual corporate social responsibility (CSR) report. While other retailers have struggled the past decade, Wisconsin-based Kohl’s has thrived and is now in every U.S. state except for Hawaii.
With that growth comes a complex supply chain and a huge environmental footprint. Kohl’s has tackled abevy of issues head-on, and has several sustainability goals in place for 2015. The company is making progress on many of those initiatives, and shows leadership within its industry on clean energy, green building and community relations.
Other retailers may want to take a few pages out of Kohl’s sustainability initiatives, a few of which include:
Green buildings: Kohl’s is greening its stores by embracing both Energy Star and LEED guidelines. The company is 85 percent towards its goal of having 800 stores Energy Star certified by 2015. In addition to the 121 stores that have solar arrays on their roofs, Kohl’s also purchased 1.4 billion renewable energy credits (RECs) to offset the company’s energy usage.
Waste diversion: Last year almost 150,000 tons of waste were recycled throughout Kohl’s operations. Everything from construction debris to depleted gift cards are sent to recycling centers. The company is aggressively reducing its paper consumption as well, from using digital signing in many of its stores to encourage both customers and employees to go paperless with pay stubs and billing statements.