Zappos Sustainability

Welcome to Zappos Sustainability Page!

We’re so glad you found us and want to learn more about the exciting things we’re doing to be green.

Zappos Sustainable Design

At Zappos, we believe that sustainability is crucial to our business and the planet. The downtown Las Vegas headquarters was created to blend Zappos’ unique culture of customer service with that of the urban Las Vegas community, while also considering the environmental impact of our presence in the southwest.

The flagship of our sustainability efforts is evident in the achievement of LEED®-Gold certification for the new Zappos headquarters in downtown Las Vegas. We breathed new life into a beloved staple of the downtown skyline, the 1973 Las Vegas City Hall, by renovating it to the green building standards of the United States Green Building Council (USGBC). Our new headquarters officially opened in October 2013.

At Zappos, our sustainability efforts are woven into all of our business units. Our projects and initiatives are championed by the Campus Operations and Sustainability teams as well as the L.E.A.F. team, a grassroots, employee-driven movement to promote environmental issues and awareness throughout the company.

A Focus on Community Connectivity

In a city famous for its neon and overindulgence, Zappos' downtown campus shifts the focus back to social and environmental responsibility – with an emphasis on urban density and community connectivity.

Highlights:

• We improved the walkability of downtown Las Vegas by replacing some dangerous intersections with more walker-friendly curbs and corners.

• Zappos encourages employees to leave campus and explore downtown and we often host meetings and happy hours off-campus at local businesses.

• Zappos installed more than 85 bike racks on our campus for the beach cruisers and road bikes of employees and visitors. We also built a locker room and shower facility for the hardcore bike commuters.

• More than 60 preferred parking spaces were created for Low Emitting and Fuel Efficient (LEFE) vehicles, plus we installed four electric car charging stations for employees and guests with electric vehicles in 2013, and 4 more stations in 2015.

• We promote carpooling with incentives and preferred parking.

• We worked with the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada (RTC) to improve bus routes throughout the city for easier commuting by bus.

• In the spring of 2015 we launched an employee-bike share program for employees to cruise around downtown Las Vegas and to explore the community. Read more about it in our blog.

A Focus on Energy Conservation

The Zappos downtown headquarters was re-designed to be a high performance, energy efficient campus. Taking into account its location at the center of an urbanized area, the retrofitted campus now incorporates many features that reduce fossil fuel consumption.

Highlights:

• Our campus has an interior lighting power density (LPD) of 0.57 Watts per square foot—nearly half the average office LPD of 1.0 Watt per square foot.

• The campus uses energy-efficient T8 fluorescent lamps in open office areas combined with individual task lighting at every desk. We are also testing several L.E.D. options. Meeting rooms and bathrooms are all equipped with motion sensors and timers.

• We don’t have cubes or offices Zappos’ open office arrangement demonstrates “high-employee-density.” Unlike the average office, we allocate less than 100 square feet per employee, therefore less energy is used per square foot per employee (kWh/ ft2/employee). It’s a cool metric to use for your building too!

• The Zappos Energy Model demonstrates a 25% reduction in energy use against the baseline consumption, which is huge!

• The campus underwent Enhanced Commissioning (Cx), which verifies that a building's systems operate according to planned requirements. The benefit of Enhanced Commissioning is a typical yield of 5-16% improvement in energy efficiency.

• The existing roof was replaced with materials that have a high solar reflectivity index (SRI), which measures a surface's ability to stay cool by reflecting solar radiation and emitting thermal radiation. This also reduces Zappos' contribution to the heat island effect.

• Both of our parking garages were retrofitted with new, brighter induction lamps to replace the yellow high-pressure sodium (HPS) bulbs. Our south garage features dimming controls and daylight sensors that help to save almost two thirds of the energy compared to the old lighting system.

• We have an awesome building management system (BMS) that allows us to fully control our heating, cooling and lighting. We think its super cool (pun – get it!?)

• Big stuff—we bought two new efficient chillers for our central plant. All four chillers are equipped with variable frequency drives (VFD’s) to decrease energy consumption.

• Renewable energy? Yes! We installed our first solar PV array on campus during the summer of 2014. Check our blog for more details.

A Focus on Water Conservation

Conscious of our campus’ location in the Mojave Desert, we renovated our campus with the intent of increasing water efficiency and lessening the burden on municipal water supply and wastewater systems. The Zappos headquarters received six total credits, including the bonus credits, under the LEED water category.

Highlights:

• The collective efforts of landscape irrigation practices, landscape plant selection, and domestic water fixture selection resulted in an impressive 57% reduction in water consumption (as compared to the baseline)!

• The sustainability team's commitment to cutting water usage included replacing inefficient, 40-year-old toilets and sinks with low-flow counterparts at a premium to the budget. We also donated the old, working fixtures to Habitat for Humanity Las Vegas.

• We installed reverse osmosis, activated-oxygen water purification stations are all over the campus, dispensing both hot and cold water. Zappos also gives away reusable mugs and glasses to decrease the use of water bottles and one-time-use cups.

• Sophisticated, highly efficient Bosch Ecosense dishwashers were installed in the eighteen kitchenettes to reduce excess wastewater.

• We didn’t forget about the big stuff – we replaced two of our three large cooling towers with new efficient models and replaced the media in the third.

A Focus on Materials Selection

The most impactful environmental decision we made was reusing a 300,000 square foot existing building for our campus. The commitment to reuse greatly reduced potential greenhouse gas emissions from demolition and new construction. Furthermore, the project followed the LEED Materials and Resources framework, which includes environmentally responsible choices in carpeting and furnishings as well as paint and cleaning products.

Highlights:

Reuse of tons and tons of steel and concrete in a 300,000 square foot building.

• We outfitted our offices with Herman Miller furniture products that are Cradle to Cradle Certified Silver, and GREENGUARD certified as well.

• Cradle to Cradle examines health safety, design for future use cycles, and sustainable manufacturing processes, while GREENGUARD ensures that products are low emitting and meet indoor air quality standards.

• We installed more than 20,000 yards of low-emitting Shaw EcoWorx carpeting, which contains 44.4% recycled content. The 100% recyclable tiles will also divert 121,890 pounds of carpet away from landfills.

• The campus has been painted completely with low VOC (volatile organic compound) paints, which mitigate potential health risks for our employees and visitors.

• We use Green Seal certified cleaning products, following the LEED Existing Buildings Operations & Maintenance framework. This protects air quality, occupant well-being, and the environment.

• 100% of the wood products purchased for the campus are certified in accordance with Forest Stewardship Council's (FSC) principles.

• In the coffee shop, the Z-Café, our amazing roof top patio floor tiles are made from recycled tires!

A Focus on Recycling

Zappos loves recycling. Recycling is one of the easiest ways to reduce one’s impact on the environment. We implemented a robust construction waste management plan during the project, and now we have a great internal office recycling program that involves all employees.

Highlights:

• At Zappos, we don’t have trash cans at individual workspaces. Instead, our teams strategically placed communal, split recycling/waste bins around the office at a density of 1:10 employees. This program is designed to reduce the volume of landfill waste and increase the volume of recycled material.

• Our awesome waste management plan during construction led to more than a 75% total waste diversion rate and two LEED credits.

• Existing building components were either reused or donated to Habitat for Humanity Las Vegas, including fluorescent light fixtures, sinks, doors, toilets, and water fountains.

• In compliance with LEED Materials and Resources (in which 10% recycled content in products corresponds to two credits), the chairs, tables, and adjustable desks used in workspaces and conference rooms are comprised of total pre- and post-consumer recycled content ranging between 24 and 67%.

• We have a cardboard baler out back and we make our own cardboard bales. We’re able to sell the bales to help raise funds for more green programs.

A Focus on Indoor Air Quality and Health

Building a LEED certified project represents an investment in Zappos employees. A healthier, more efficient building creates a happier, healthier environment and more productive employees—which ensures happier customer service and happier customers! That’s what we're all about!

Highlights:

• The campus underwent stringent indoor air testing protocols, set by the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) "Compendium of Methods for the Determination of Air Pollutants in Indoor Air", which helped us make changes for improved indoor air quality.

• The project earned a LEED credit for having a before-occupancy construction IAQ management plan.

• At Zappos, we love to eat! Our Z-Bistro places strong emphasis on cooking with local, seasonal ingredients sourced from local and sustainable farms.

• We planted an herb garden on campus. We grow basil, thyme, oregano, peppers and more! Our Chefs believe we can eventually grow enough herbs to support the entire demand from cooking needs.

• We outfitted our offices with Herman Miller furniture products that are Cradle to Cradle Certified Silver, and GREENGUARD certified as well.

• Cradle to Cradle examines health safety, design for future use cycles, and sustainable manufacturing processes, while GREENGUARD ensures that products are low emitting and meet indoor air quality standards. (We definitely reused this bullet point because it’s so cool!)

• Smoking is not permitted inside the building and there is only one designated smoking area, well away from entry doors or air intakes.

• We didn’t forget about the big stuff – we replaced two of our three large cooling towers with new efficient models and replaced the media in the third.

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