Our Operational Impact
Transparency & Engagement
Our efforts to effectively manage our environmental impacts are strengthened by cross-sector partnerships, which demonstrate our commitment to climate action and transparency.
In support of our commitment to transparency regarding our environmental performance, Goldman Sachs has been a signatory to the CDP climate change survey since 2006, and has made our climate change-related disclosures publicly available since 2010. In 2017, we were named to CDP’s Climate “A” List, which recognizes the firm as a world leader for corporate action on climate change.
We have included the results of the verification in our CDP submissions since 2009. CDP considers independent verification to be an important factor in their evaluation of our environmental performance and data integrity.
In July 2015, we participated in the American Business Act on Climate Pledge event, which was hosted by the White House. As part of the event, we announced a pledge to achieve carbon neutrality across our operations and business travel in 2015 and maintain it thereafter. We also committed to use 100% renewable power to meet our global electricity needs by 2020, demonstrating our ongoing commitment to climate action.
In 2015, we joined the RE100 Initiative, led by The Climate Group in partnership with CDP, committing to 100% renewable energy use by 2020. We will look to share best practices with partner companies in supporting the renewable energy market. In 2016, we procured certified renewable energy credits equivalent to 90% of our global electricity consumption and signed a long-term power purchase agreement for a solar power facility in India. In 2017, we procured certified renewable energy credits equivalent to 95% of our global electricity consumption and signed a new long-term power purchase agreement for a wind farm in Pennsylvania.
In 2013, we joined the New York City Carbon Challenge for Commercial Offices in focusing on using energy more efficiently in our interior and leased spaces through innovative strategies such as IT efficiency, lighting controls and space layout optimization. With this commitment we aimed to reduce the emissions per square foot at our global headquarters at 200 West Street in New York by 40% from our 2006 levels by 2023.
In 2015, we achieved this goal by reducing the emissions per square foot of our headquarters by 42%. Our achievement is highlighted in our “Early Achiever” case study. We will continue to implement energy reduction projects and maintain our 40% reduction commitment through 2023.
AWARDS AND RECOGNITION
Green Power Leadership Awards
We were selected for recognition in the Excellence in Green Power Use category of the 2016 Green Power Leadership Awards. This annual award from the EPA recognizes the country’s leading green power users for their commitment and contribution to helping advance the development of the nation’s voluntary green power market. We were one of only seven organizations nationwide to receive the Excellence in Green Power Use award.
Climate Leadership Awards
We were selected by The Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES), and the Climate Registry for recognition in the Excellence in Greenhouse Gas Management-Goal Achievement category and the Organizational Leadership category of the 2017 Climate Leadership Awards. In 2018 we received the award in the Innovative Partnerships category of the Climate Leadership Awards for our partnership with the Building Energy Exchange and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory to build out the Living Lab at our global headquarters.
We were recognized with a Utah Green Business Award and a Salt Lake City Skyline Award in Tenant Leadership for our energy reduction and efficiency initiatives implemented in our Salt Lake City offices.
In addition to our environmental efforts, the firm also recognizes its role in the communities in which we live, work, and operate. As a firm, we are committed to fostering local relationships and addressing social issues that impact our neighborhoods. We regularly seek opportunities to maximize our social impact, and where we can, create opportunities for our employees to volunteer for causes that align with our initiatives and core competencies.
Jersey City Student Art Project
Since 2005, the Student Art Project (SAP) has been a free arts and education program that introduces local students to new artistic mediums and environments, while also encouraging them to think critically about topical issues that impact their community. In partnership with a local artist and a nonprofit partner, students complete a series of education workshops around a particular theme and translate their lessons into individual works that reflect their personal views on the subject. Student artwork from each year’s program is displayed along Jersey City’s waterfront esplanade near 30 Hudson Street for the community to enjoy throughout the year.
Local College Collaborative
The Local College Collaborative (LCC) is a unique leadership program that brings together underrepresented college students with Goldman Sachs business leaders to develop leadership and career readiness skills. The LCC brings together forty high-performing students from four academic institutions in close proximity to the firm’s offices in Jersey City and New York City. Ten students from each of the partnering schools, Borough of Manhattan Community College, Hudson County Community College, New Jersey City University and Saint Peter’s University, are identified through a competitive application process. Students are evaluated on academic achievement, interviews, essays, team-building simulations, recommendations and other criteria. Over the course of the academic year, students work within their respective school groups to tackle a series of business case challenges alongside our volunteer coaches including periodic thought leadership meetings to hear from the firm’s business leaders on relevant topics such as professionalism, personal resiliency, diversity in the workplace or time management.
ESG Initiatives on our Real Estate Development Projects
2017 Accomplishments for London and Bengaluru Developments
In addition to responsibly managing our firm’s on-going real estate operations, we also aim to ensure we are integrating ESG best practices on major development projects, where we can. In 2017, through creative partnerships with our strategic vendors, we were able to achieve the following accomplishments on our active development projects in London and Bengaluru:
London: Plumtree Court (PTC)
- Re-purposed and donated furniture from London campus to over 14 community partners
- Certified 100% of concrete, plasterboard and steel on PTC is responsibly sourced
- Certified 100% of Timber used on PTC under sustainable forest management
- Recycled 48 tonnes of wood from PTC in partnership with local organizations
- Provided 1,500+ health assessments and 400+ health visits for London construction site staff
- Launched London Student Engagement Projects for over 40 students from three schools
- Partnered with vendors to deliver workshops on Careers in Construction Management to ~100 students in London
- Routinely contacted the City Of London to share best practices, case studies and progress updates
- Achieved score of 45/50 on Considerate Construction Scheme (CCS)
- Initiated independent governance audits on Fit Out and Shell & Core phases
Bengaluru: Bengaluru Development Project (BDP)
- Recycled 100% of construction waste generated
- Procured locally sourced and recycled content for building materials
- Completed flood risk assessments and established outdoor air quality monitoring action plan
- Completed 8+ million Bengaluru Development Project safe working hours and conducted free multi-day health camps for 1,800+ construction workers, families, and local students
- Launched the Bengaluru Student Art Project for 200 students from four schools
- Launched LEAPS (Leadership Adoption Program for Schools) in 7 government schools to teach skills and traits such as public speaking, etiquette, and self-esteem
- Launched the ‘BDP ESG Dream Team’ with vendor partners to influence ESG best practices for implementation on-site. Trademark events include free vaccine drives and spoken English classes to construction workers
- Influencing BDP infrastructure requirements through leadership presence in ORRCA (Outer Ring Road Companies Association)
- Used an the ESG Questionnaire from firmwide Sustainable Procurement Toolkit to evaluate vendors during the procurement process