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Office Deport CSR: Electricity Use, Carbon Footprint Down 11%

Office Depot, a global provider of office products and services, has reduced its electricity use and expenses as well as its overall carbon footprint by 11 percent, according to the company’s 2010 Corporate Citizenship Report.

In 2009, Office Depot also lowered its waste expenditures by $1 million and helped customers recycle 73 percent more material than the previous year. The company also stated 2012 goals to increasingly buy green, be green and sell green.

Here are some 2009 environmental highlights for Office Depot in North America. Energy intensity across all facilities and retail stores both dropped 10 percent in 2009, while CO2e emission intensity across all facilities fell eight percent. Materials sent to landfills dropped 27 percent.

In addition, Office Depot in the U.S. created a three-tier “Shades of Green Rating” system to help customers make better green purchasing decisions. The rating system designates a product as light green, mid green or dark green, depending on its environmental attributes and certifications versus other products in its category.

Currently, Office Depot offers more than 9,000 products with one or more green attributes or certifications in the U.S. alone. These include 6,800 products with recycled content, more than 400 energy-efficient technology and lighting products, and hundreds of products certified to contain safer chemicals.

The company also continues to increase its own internal procurement of green office supplies. By year end, close to 50 percent of supplies purchased at its global headquarters will be qualified as ‘mid green’ or ‘dark green.’

The company also exceeded its goal to ensure more of its marketing papers were from certified, responsibly managed forest sources. In 2009, 99 percent of its marketing paper was sourced from certified forests or certified sourcing schemes with 61 percent from FSC-certified forests.

A year after opening the world’s first Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Volume-Certified retail store prototype, the store, located in Austin, Texas, has reduced its carbon intensity by 23 percent, which is ahead of the company’s initial projections.

In addition, the store is 15 percent more energy efficient per square foot, and its annual electricity costs are 16 percent lower than other Office Depot retail locations in Austin.

As a result, the company announced in February that it would pursue LEED for Commercial Interiors (CI) certification for all new and relocated Office Depot retail stores. Fourteen locations will receive LEED CI certification this year.

Office Depot’s more than 1,000 stores in operation in North America and Canada have reduced their year-over-year electricity consumption by 12.1 percent primarily due to lamp fixture retrofits.

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