Why does REI report on its sustainable business and CSR practices?
REI's CEO and President Sally Jewell notes that 2005 was a turning point for REI's efforts in corporate social responsibility (CSR)—or stewardship as we refer to our actions. It was the year we transitioned from "random acts of kindness" to a process-driven approach towards sustainable business thinking. What changed in 2005 was the recognition that if we were truly going to make a difference, we needed to become better organized.
Our 2010 stewardship report is thus our annual opportunity to formally engage with our employees, members and communities about the co-op's performance against our ambitious goals. Are we doing what we said we would? Are we focused on the right things? Are we making any progress?
With the release of our 2010 report—our fifth—we share the details, metrics and background on our efforts. The report dives deep: from reducing greenhouse gas impacts to our role in supporting volunteerism to care for great outdoor places to how we are doing to meet our goal of being an employer of choice.
We've achieved some solid results—for example, reducing the total amount of energy we use for the second year in a row, despite growing the co-op and adding 9 new stores in the last 2 years.
We also share that some issues remain unsolved, for example although 58.4% of our paper purchases are Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified, 13.2% of our paper products still come from unknown sources.
Over the coming weeks we'll highlight some of the topics and results in our report. We invite you, our members and communities, to look through the report and online stewardship pages, make comments and ask questions that help us tackle these challenges. We would appreciate your feedback and input on the co-op's efforts to make our business part of the solution.