LEED Certification Leads Trend to More Sustainable Warehouses

ARC Report Abstract

Sustainability, one of the most talked about topics in supply chain, often focuses on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, green packaging, raising labor standards, use of renewable resources, and energy efficiency. However, when it comes to sustainability in logistics, transportation garners the maximum attention.

While sustainability practices have not yet gained significant traction in most warehouses and distribution centers (DCs), this may be changing.

Designing these facilities for more sustainable operation and maintenance can contribute significantly to a more sustainable overall supply chain. Sustainable design helps ensure a healthy environment, encourages worker safety, and provides a winning edge. From a more critical business perspective, it also lowers operating costs, ultimately improving a company's financial performance. Though it is not mandatory today, businesses have started to see sustainability clauses inserted into requests for proposals (RFPs) for warehouses.

This ARC Insight attempts to take warehouse and DC sustainability efforts to a different level. It discusses practices (actions or guidelines) for both constructing a new warehouse and operating and maintaining an existing one. The practices can be adopted by logistics firms and managers to improve their warehouse sustainability performance. Many organizations today provide frameworks for ensuring warehouse sustainability. The most commonly adopted standards for building sustainability is the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification provided by the Green Building Council.

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Keywords: 3PLs, Green Building Council, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), Sustainability, Warehousing, ARC Advisory Group.

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