Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Study Finds Retailers Embracing Green Practices

Arlington VA - According to a Retail Systems Research (RSR) report released today in partnership with the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA), leading retailers have established themselves as innovators in environmental sustainability and remain committed to incorporating green practices into their operations.

The report reveals that retailers have integrated environmentally sustainable practices into their business models, business practices and branding. In doing so, retailers have achieved significant cost savings in their operations and benefits to brand image. The report also suggests that retailers believe considerable opportunities for expanded efforts still exist. An overwhelming number of respondents view a reduction in energy consumption at the store level (92%) and throughout the supply chain (88%) as a key opportunity to realize additional cost savings. Other examples of high return on investment, environmentally-sustainable opportunities identified in the survey include packaging (89%), product design (84%), and new store construction (79%).

According to the report, “Not only has the overall sentiment about green evolved, but the areas where retailers are investing have changed significantly. Retail Winners have made even greater progress: for them green is rapidly creating a strategic advantage in ALL corners of the enterprise.”

“This report quantifies the outstanding progress made by retailers who have committed to developing environmentally sustainable practices and incorporating them into their business operations,” said Casey Chroust, senior vice president for retail operations.

For the full report visit
RILA and its members actively pursue and promote environmental sustainability in numerous ways. In 2007, RILA launched the RILA Sustainability Initiative (RSI), a collaborative initiative designed to help leading retail companies meet and exceed environmental standards by pursuing environmentally sustainable activities and responsible business practices.
RILA is a member of the EPA SmartWay Shipper Stakeholder Committee, which provides input toward the development of the program’s next generation. Smartway is an innovative collaboration between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the freight industry designed to increase energy efficiency while significantly reducing greenhouse gases and air pollution. RILA is also a partner with EPA’s Energy Star and WasteWise programs.

On October 5-7, RILA will host the second annual Environmental Sustainability & Compliance Conference (ESCC). This unique educational conference is the only sustainability conference designed and presented by retailers, for retailers. The event brings together business leaders from across the retail spectrum to hear from their peers, share best practices, and learn the latest operational strategies for environmental sustainability and compliance.

The Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) promotes consumer choice and economic freedom through public policy and industry operational excellence. Its members include the largest and most successful retailers operating in the U.S.--which together provide millions of jobs and operate more than 100,000 stores, manufacturing facilities and distribution centers domestically and abroad.