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Sustainability

Zappos Travel Goes Carbon Neutral ... Again

Written with heart Brad Tomm

March 13th, 2017

We've got big news to share, and it allows everyone to breathe a bit easier! For the second year in a row, Zappos has announced that its corporate flight activity will be carbon neutral through an offset purchase program.

Zappos is continuing its partnership with Natural Capital Partners to sponsor forest projects in Mississippi, Chile and Brazil. The carbon offsets will mitigate more than 6.8 million miles of Zappos air travel to more than 25 different countries.

In 2016, the carbon offset program reduced carbon dioxide from more than 3,300 Zappos flights domestically and abroad, including countries as far away as Sweden and the United Arab Emirates.

A carbon offset is a certified emission reduction credit which can be purchased by individuals, businesses and governments to reduce their net greenhouse gas emissions. Offsets are purchased from another organization’s project (e.g. tree planting projects) that results in less carbon dioxide or other greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere than would otherwise occur. Offsets are so named because they counteract or "offset" a purchaser's emissions.

Brad Tomm

“Face-to-face meetings, conferences and retail trade shows are essential to Zappos' business. We want employees to keep traveling, but we also want to take responsibility for our carbon footprint,” said Mark Spencer, head of Travel.

The Travel Team started making carbon data from flights available and transparent to employees in 2015.

Members of Zappos’ Travel, Sustainability and Brand Aura departments teamed up to research and launch the program. Through a management system called Holacracy, employees from different departments can self-organize around unique work projects regardless of their title, seniority or position in the company.

“I was really excited to work with colleagues from other departments who were equally passionate about conservation and the environment,” said Brad Tomm, who leads the Sustainability Team.

Related: Zappos Joins Key Organizations in 2015

The corporate travel carbon offset program is Zappos’ first significant purchase of carbon offsets. The program supports three forestry projects, including reforestation and avoided deforestation, protecting important carbon sinks as well as key areas of biodiversity.

“We are seeing more and more businesses wanting to lead the way in taking action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. By using carbon finance, not only is Zappos demonstrating a long-term commitment to the sustainability of its business and meeting its reduction goals, but it is also delivering funds to these essential forest conservation projects around the world,” says Mark La Croix, executive vice president of Natural Capital Partners.

The original announcement was first made at the company’s quarterly “All Hands” meeting in front of 1,500 employees and guests. The teams who made the announcement encouraged employees to speak up and share their ideas through a call to action that included soliciting one idea from each employee about Zappos and its connection to the environment.

We’re sharing the same call to action email address with you. If you’d like to suggest ideas about how Zappos and the environment are connected, please email us at WhatsNext@Zappos.com.

For more information about Zappos’ sustainability program visit our website Zappos.com/LEED, or Twitter @ZapposLEAF and Instagram at Zappos_LEAF.

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