In an important milestone in meeting its Climate Pledge commitments, Amazon is seeking net-zero carbon certification for its newest Amazon Fresh grocery store. More than a dozen upgrades and features have been incorporated throughout the design and development of the 35,000-square-foot Seattle space to help make the store the world’s first grocery store to pursue the International Living Future Institute Zero Carbon certification. As a result of these upgrades, we expect the store will save nearly 185 tons of CO2e each year, equivalent to driving around the Earth 18 times in a standard passenger vehicle.1
“We are constantly thinking about what we can do to make the customer shopping experience easier, more seamless, and more sustainable,” said Stephenie Landry, vice president of Amazon Grocery. “We know many customers are prioritizing sustainability in what products they buy and where they choose to shop. With our newest Amazon Fresh store, we are taking the next step on our path to becoming a net-zero carbon business by 2040, and we welcome customers to experience this firsthand while shopping with us in this store.”
Updates to this store include transitioning to a CO2-based refrigeration system, which reduces greenhouse gas emissions by 38 metric tons per year compared to a conventional system. The store also uses steel byproducts in the concrete floor to reduce the embodied carbon—the carbon associated with the manufacturing and installation of the flooring—by nearly 40% compared to a standard concrete floor. Another critical change is the fully electric kitchen space, where our store teams prepare fresh food, that reduces the need for fossil fuel combustion in the store. We are also electrifying the store using 100% renewable electricity sourced from Amazon’s renewable energy projects, which helps us continue in our progress to power Amazon operations with 100% renewable energy by 2025.
Some upgrades will be used at all of our Amazon Fresh grocery stores moving forward, such as lower-carbon concrete flooring, which will help to reduce our embodied carbon.
“In order to deliver on our commitments to The Climate Pledge, we must work together across all areas of our business to develop solutions to decarbonize,” said Kara Hurst, vice president of Worldwide Sustainability at Amazon. “It’s meaningful progress to open our latest Amazon Fresh Store seeking net-zero carbon certification, and I’m proud of the innovation and technology that the store offers to customers and employees, and for the environment.”
This Amazon Fresh location is seeking Zero Carbon certification from the International Living Future Institute (ILFI), a leading nonprofit dedicated to advancing sustainable building practices. ILFI-certified buildings must be energy efficient, have all electricity provided by renewable energy, demonstrate a reduction in the embodied carbon of building materials, and prove that all carbon emissions associated with the manufacturing and construction process have been neutralized. To receive certification, ILFI will review 12 consecutive months of performance data to ensure the new store meets this standard.
“Amazon’s pursuit of Zero Carbon certification for its latest Amazon Fresh location shows an important commitment to verifiable carbon reductions,” said Lindsay Baker, CEO of the International Living Future Institute. “As the world’s first grocer seeking Zero Carbon certification, this approach represents an important benchmark for the grocery sector and the retailers overall.”
Amazon will be able to measure the real-time impact of these upgrades via a system built by Amazon Web Services’ Professional Services Sustainability Practice. We will look to apply what we learn to future Amazon stores and buildings, helping accelerate our path to net-zero carbon by 2040 as part of The Climate Pledge.
Customers shopping in-store will be able to choose from a variety of Climate Pledge Friendly products, ranging from grocery items to household cleaning and beauty products, such as Seventh Generation, Annie’s, Mrs. Meyer’s, Bob’s Red Mill, and Clif Bar. Newly launched Fresh Brand Plant-Based products like almondmilk and meat-alternative ground, patties, sausage, meatballs, and Chick’n nuggets are also available. As with all Amazon Fresh stores, customers can shop from a selection of organic meat, seafood, and produce. Excess food items will be donated to local food banks.
As part of Amazon’s commitment to sustainability and local communities, this store is providing a donation to Tilth Alliance, a local nonprofit building community with farmers, gardeners, and families in Washington state to create a sustainable, healthy, and equitable food future.
“Supporting safe, healthy, and sustainable business is critical to the infrastructure and resiliency of the City of Seattle and for our community,” said Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell. “We are excited to see Amazon bringing healthy food and carbon-conscious grocery shopping to the people of Seattle. The new Amazon Fresh store represents the kind of climate-forward action we hope to see from our business partners in our communities.”
The location is the 26th Amazon Fresh grocery store in the U.S. and the fourth location to open in the greater Seattle area. We’re pleased to offer a new, low-priced grocery store in the community in addition to bringing hundreds of high-quality jobs to the area. Customers at the new store will experience the same great value and quality they expect with Amazon Fresh: free, fast grocery pick-up for Prime members, low prices, broad selection, package pick-up, and free Amazon.com returns, plus convenient shopping features like Alexa shopping list integration and Just Walk Out technology, which gives customers the option to skip the checkout line.
1 As a result of these upgrades, we expect the store will save nearly 185 tons of CO2e each year compared to an industry-standard grocery store, equivalent to driving around the Earth 18 times in a standard passenger vehicle. Calculation based on CO2e saved, using the EPA carbon calculator.