Best Buy: Using Bucknell’s library advanced “research by subject” search engine, I found an interview article of Best Buy’s Co-director of environmental affairs Brenda Mathison. She talks about Best Buy’s recent green initiatives of the past decade. Their 1,200 stores of 140,000 employees that brought in $50 billion in revenue last year is setting an example in sustainability. In 2006, Best Buy received the Environmental Initiative Award from the Minnesota Environmental Initiative.
Best Buy has been working with the USGBC since 2006 with other retailers, such as Starbucks, Lowe’s, and Target, to approve a green certification program for standard retailer buildings/warehouses to become LEED certified instead of getting each building approved in each specific location. While the program is still under its testing phase, Best Buy has only been buying or building LEED certified stores since March 1, 2008. The LEED prototype building they are introducing includes:
“…a combination of green elements, including energy-efficient lighting (ceramic metal halide with dimmable lighting by zones, expected to reduce lighting costs by 20%), high-efficiency HVAC system, sustainable building materials, greywater recycling and central energymanagement system.”
Best Buy is also known for their recycling program. In addition to be the leading retailer of recycling consumer electronics, they were also the first company to provide a permanent kiosk to collect electronic equipment for recycling in every Best Buy store. They also collect old appliances from homes when they deliver their products to take in for recycling. In 2007, Best Buy collected 31,000 tons (that’s 62,000,000 pounds) of appliances for recycling. 64,000 tons of cardboard and plastics (do the math yourself) were also collected for recycling. These are just some of the program and events they offer. Check out more on their resources site for more: Best Buy Recycle.
Best Buy is also in the midst of implementing a new energy management system for all their stores across the United States. They have been installed in 300 stores already, and plan to complete the change within a few months. Besides the approximated $71 million in cost savings on energy over the next six years, it will also reduce their carbon emissions by 20%. They have already reduced their emissions by 8.3 % since 2010 without the new system and growing number of stores each year.
These are just a few initiatives Best Buy has been taking that I care to include in this post. In addition to the interview article, you can learn much more about their efforts, like I did, on their web page they dedicated to sustainability.