Walgreens Boots Alliance is committed to promoting a healthy planet and doing our part to be responsible stewards of the environment.
We are determined to protect the planet through programs in our operations and by engaging suppliers on environmental issues. We are committed to:
- Reduce energy consumption and emissions
- Reduce waste, increasing re-use and recycling and collaborating to help create an increasingly circular economy
- Reduce the negative impacts of plastics in our owned brand products
- Across our businesses, we are working to address the urgent threat of climate change.
- We are investing in energy-efficient equipment, such as lighting, refrigerators and heating and ventilation systems; and we are working to phase down the refrigerants that most contribute to global warming.
- Thanks to continued investment in energy efficiency, WBA’s carbon emissions from energy, excluding acquired Rite Aid stores, decreased by 7 percent in fiscal 2019 compared with the previous year.
- Our emissions from product delivery have also come down in recent years as we continue to work on fuel efficiency in our Walgreens fleet of more than 900 private trucks and integrate zero-emission vehicles into our Boots UK fleet.
- Through our EnergyCare program, we are creating an energy-conscious culture and helping our employees learn about how they can do their part.
We are consciously working to reduce waste associated with our operations and to minimize any adverse effects of waste through responsible management, innovative solutions and collaborating with vendor partners to unlock the value of recyclable commodities that create more efficient operations and practices.
Walgreens distribution centers diverted 94 percent of waste from landfill in fiscal 2019, through an ongoing zero waste to landfill program. Single-stream recycling has been implemented at our support office in Deerfield, Ill., and we plan to apply learnings and expand recycling at Walgreens stores.
In 2019, Boots Opticians partnered with Johnson & Johnson Vision and TerraCycle to offer the UK’s first in-store contact lens recycling program. Between mid-January and Aug. 31, 2019 the program collected 3.4 metric tonnes of plastic waste for recycling: more than half a million units of contact lenses and blister packs.
- We have heard our stakeholders’ concerns about plastics. Responding to a global sense of urgency over this complex issue, we have adopted a new CSR commitment to reduce the negative impact of plastics in our owned brands, which include our global health and beauty brands, as well as a wide range of Walgreens and Boots UK house brand retail products.
- In addition, we are working on numerous initiatives to reduce plastics in our retail and wholesale operations, to educate and inspire customers and employees around how they can make a difference on the plastics issue, and to work with industry groups on comprehensive solutions.
In 2019, Boots UK announced that it would transition from plastic shopping bags to more sustainable alternatives made from 100 percent FSC-certified recyclable paper, which will lead to the removal of over 900 metric tons of plastic from Boots store operations each year.
Ahead of the 2019 holiday season, Boots UK worked with suppliers to reduce plastic used in gift packaging by 149 metric tons. It has also taken a leading position in past years as one of the first health and beauty retailers to stop the manufacturing and sale of any personal care products containing plastic microbeads.
Walgreens is a founding retail partner of Loop, a state-of-the-art circular shopping system. Walgreens customers in pilot program markets have their purchases delivered in specially designed reusable shipping totes. The durable and reusable packaging is collected, cleaned, refilled and reused, creating a revolutionary circular shopping system.