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Retail & Corporate Facilities

Retail Operations

Green Building:
Our Portland Flagship store has earned LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) for Retail Commercial Interiors Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), one of the first retail locations in the U.S. to achieve this certification. In addition, our Seattle branded store is also LEED Silver certified. Read more.

Retail bags:
We redesigned our retail bags to be made with 80% post-consumer recycled paper. These bags are reusable, 100% recyclable and include a message on the bag encouraging reuse.

Hanger Reuse:
We buy reused hangers for our retail stores. Buying reused hangers versus traditional hangers saves valuable material and greenhouse gasses.

We offset all emissions associated with the production of our catalogs resulting in carbon neutral certified catalogs. This has enabled us to save over of 335,000 kgs of carbon emissions over the last two years. This is the same amount of carbon offset by 275 acres of U.S. forests in one year.

Columbia catalogs are also made with 30% recycled content. Using recycled content over traditional content has enabled Columbia to save over 498 fully grown trees, 233,256 gallons of water and 15,613 pounds of waste over the last two years.

Corporate Facilites

Columbia owns and operates approximately 5 million square feet of space across multiple geographies. These locations include offices, retail space, warehouses and distribution centers (DC).

We are committed to reducing its environmental impact at these owned and operated facilities and have implemented a host of efficiency initiatives, including a couple highlighted below:

  • Our Rivergate Distribution Center implemented an Energy Management System that reduced conveyor belt energy usage by 23%. The Energy Management System consists of two projects; 1) installing programming logic code to enable 'sleep mode' for conveyor belts, and 2) installing Variable Frequency Drives (VFD).
  • Our Computerized Lighting Control Management System at Headquarters shuts off lights when not in use, including after hours, weekends and holidays.
  • Our Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) system at Headquarters is controlled by an environmental controls computer. This system efficiently controls hours of operation and calculates when to turn on the AC or heating versus opening the economizers to cool the building with outside air.

Although Columbia has been proactive in addressing building operational efficiency in the past, we are constantly looking for areas to improve and have identified a couple key projects across our real estate portfolio that will increase efficiency and reduce expected electricity use by approximately 10% in 2016 form usage in 2014. These projects include LED retrofits at Headquarters, Lighting Management Systems at Retail and Lighting retrofits at the Distribution Center.

In addition to efficiency based initiatives, we also use renewable energy in select locations. In 2009, we installed a 100 KW grid-tied solar electric system consisting of 570 photovoltaic (PV) panels on the roof of our Headquarters building. As of August 2015, this system has created 820,230 kwh of electricity since its existence which is enough to offset 1,170,602 lbs of carbon emissions. Check out the live dashboard tracking our solar panel outputs here.

We are committed to continuing to measure and improve our energy, water and waste performance at owned and operated facilities and have been tracking usage since 2010.

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