How Equinix is Advancing Sustainability

Katrina Rymill
Jennifer Ruch
How Equinix is Advancing Sustainability

Even before the impact of COVID-19, digital transformation was reshaping every industry across the globe, fundamentally changing how businesses connect, interact and innovate. Advances like artificial intelligence (AI), 5G and the internet of things (IoT) are empowering businesses to create new value chains and operate more sustainably and resiliently. At the same time, our planet and global communities face ongoing critical challenges including climate change, growing pressure on the world’s resources, gender inequality and more. Now more than ever before, customers, investors, employees and communities consider sustainability an essential element of doing business.

According to Jennifer Cooke, IDC Research Director, Cloud to Edge Datacenter Trends “As companies are evaluating infrastructure and services for their digital transformation initiatives, they are increasingly prioritizing sustainability as part of their strategy. Environmentally-conscious data center providers that deliver efficiencies and resiliency at global scale are well-positioned to meet the needs of companies both today and well into the future. Through efforts to reduce environmental impact through public policy, renewable energy and fuel cell strategies, companies like Equinix are greening the supply chain for their customers. Equinix’s commitment to sustainability demonstrates that, as the company grows, it can continue to positively impact communities and the planet.”

As a leader in our industry, we are harnessing the power of technology and interconnection to create a more sustainable future for all. At Equinix, we are committed to protecting the planet, connecting everyone to the benefits of the digital world and powering global trust and responsibility. This interactive report shares how we are advancing our sustainability programs and the progress made across our environment, social and governance (ESG) initiatives.

Download the Equinix 2019 Sustainability Report

Learn how Equinix engages with its stakeholders – investors, customers, employees and others to advance and evolve our environment, social and governance (ESG) efforts.

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Earth globe in family hands. World environment day concept. Elements of this image furnished by NASA

Advancing our ESG commitments

At Equinix, sustainability encompasses how we are creating positive value across the ESG aspects of our business. These include:

We have made meaningful progress across all of our ESG commitments. Highlights include:

In 2019, we achieved over 90% renewable energy use, totaling 5,250 GWh, up from 34% in 2015. We covered 100% of our U.S. and European load with renewable energy and 75% of our load in Asia-Pacific. For our efforts in the U.S. we were recognized again by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) with our third consecutive EPA Green Power Leadership Award.

We also continued to expand our work with the Renewable Energy Buyers Alliance (REBA) as a founding and board member where we educate our peers and advocate for a swift transition towards low-carbon energy. Our renewable energy efforts have driven down our carbon footprint by 60% since 2015, even as our overall data center footprint and energy consumption has doubled. For additional environment highlights, check out our Earth Day blog.

Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging (DIB) is a strategic priority for Equinix empowering every employee. As a part of CEO ACT!ON, Equinix President and CEO, Charles Meyers, pledged, along with several hundred fellow CEOs, to build a more inclusive workplace. In 2019, we launched a global DIB Working Team led by the Office of the CEO and an Allies Council of global senior leaders advocating for underrepresented communities at Equinix. We also expanded our Equinix Employee Connection Networks (EECNs), and our Equinix Women Leaders Network (EWLN) continues to grow and support development of women leaders. Recently, two additional women, Sandra Rivera and Adaire Fox-Martin joined our Board of Directors, bringing female representation up to nearly a third of the Board. And finally, we supported our employees to make a difference in their communities. Through our Equinix Impact program, in 2019 we donated nearly $1.3 million to 1,150 charities across the globe.

The current COVID-19 pandemic highlights that we are all interconnected and global companies are stepping up to support employees and their communities during this crisis. In response to the unprecedented impact of COVID-19 in 2020, we are also currently providing the following assistance:

  • Platform Equinix service donation to qualifying organizations supporting the greater good through this pandemic
  • Employee financial assistance, remote work resources and health and wellness support
  • Increased employee donation match to 2:1 through the end of May for specified charities, NGOs and those on the front-lines working to respond to the outbreak
  • Virtual volunteering resources for employees

Integrity is a core Equinix value. We follow ethical accounting standards and align our reporting to the major sustainability reporting frameworks such as the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI). We also remain committed to equipping our employees with the information and knowledge they need to uphold our ethical standards every day. For the sixth year in a row, we achieved 100% employee participation in our global compliance training. We’ve expanded transparency around our political donations, and we are making significant progress on complying with rigorous data privacy and protection standards. We meet the requirements of the European Union (EU)’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and were the first company to attain approval from the EU for its Binding Corporate Rules, which regulate the transborder flow of personal data from the EU worldwide.

Partnering well to protect the future

As the twin forces of digital transformation and pressure on our planet continue to converge and accelerate, businesses will increasingly prioritize partnering with industry leaders who can help them reach their own sustainability and resiliency needs. Our renewable energy procurement, sustainable innovations and commitment to diversity, inclusion and belonging have been recognized by industry and governmental organizations worldwide. Some of our awards and recognition include:

Learn more about how Equinix is growing sustainably in our interactive sustainability report.

You may also be interested in reading our previous Earth Day, sustainability and impact blog posts.

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Katrina Rymill SVP Corporate Finance & Sustainability
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Jennifer Ruch Former Senior Director, Sustainability & ESG
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