Equinix is committed to a path of long-term sustainable growth and we are proud to approach our sustainability efforts in the same agile, innovative way we solve our customers’ business challenges.
As a digital leader, we are harnessing the power of technology and interconnection to create a more sustainable future for all. At Equinix, we are committed to protecting our planet, connecting everyone to the benefits of the digital world, and powering global trust and responsibility. Our corporate Sustainability Program is comprised of a set of connected environment, social and governance (ESG) initiatives designed to positively impact our stakeholders.
Protecting Our Planet
Connecting People to Opportunity
Powering Global Trust and Responsibility
At Equinix, we believe in creating shared value with our customers, partners, investors and employees. We continuously strive to be good stewards of environmental and human capital and our definition of business growth and success includes steadfastly adhering to best-in-class ESG practices. We are dedicated to being nimble in our response to the ever-evolving global issues our business faces as we operate in increasingly globalized markets.
To this end, we routinely evaluate our ESG programs to increase the benefits they bring to our changing world. We continually innovate to meet our unwavering Equinix commitment to renewable energy, increasing efficiency and improving resiliency. Our employee and community engagement programs integrate purpose, passion and impact to deliver on the promise we make to every employee that they are safe, they belong, and they matter. And our governance and ethics programs ensure we are all working together to build an organization that is defined by its honesty, integrity and consistently ethical behavior.
Equinix manages sustainability through a dedicated Sustainability Program Office located in Investor Relations which is part of Finance. The Program Office provides sustainability knowledge and leadership in assembling and leading the team to define and implement initiatives, processes, and systems solutions in respective the functional areas that manage E, S and G. Sustainability is overseen by the Sustainability Executive Steering Committee – comprised of our Executive Chairman, President/CEO, CFO, CLO and CHRO, EVP, Global Operations and ultimately reports to Equinix’s Board of Directors Governance Committee.
To accelerate our collective progress on the world’s most important social and environmental challenges, we have joined many other leading companies, countries and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in aligning our objectives with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs). As enablers of the digital economy, we recognize that our services have the opportunity to make a positive impact across all 17 of the UN SDGs. While every SDG is important, we focus on the SDGs most material to our business to make the most significant impact possible.
We are committed to transparently communicating our strategy and the impact of our operations. We actively share our progress by responding to numerous voluntary environmental and sustainability surveys and customer requests throughout the year.
To demonstrate our measurable progress, we have aligned this sustainability report – and all previous reports – with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI). We’ve also disclosed our climate change data through the CDP Climate Change Survey every year since 2015. Our energy and greenhouse gas data are third-party verified each year to ISO 14064-3 limited assurance standards.
Our customers are at the center of everything we do and we empower them to quantify their environmental impact within our data centers – including their energy consumption, renewable energy usage and carbon footprints. In 2019, we developed customized Green Power Reports, also known as renewable energy attestation statements, based on the principles of The Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Protocol. These reports equip our customers with the data they need to understand their energy usage and measure and report relevant metrics to achieve their greenhouse gas reduction and renewable energy targets.
The following customers have used our documentation in their sustainability reporting efforts.
“Equinix’s progress and commitment toward reaching its 100% renewable energy goal worldwide demonstrates to Oracle the importance of working with our strategic suppliers to help contribute to our own renewable energy strategy.”
Jon Chorley, Chief Sustainability Officer – Oracle
Equinix continues to evolve its reporting to meet the requirements of leading industry frameworks.
In 2019, Equinix became a founding member of the U.S. Chapter of the Prince of Wales’ Accounting for Sustainability Project (A4S) CFO Leadership Network along with other industry leaders including Caterpillar, Levi Strauss & Co, Mars, Salesforce, and VMWare. As of March 2020, the U.S. Network currently comprises 11 CFOs from large businesses. A4S will join with leading frameworks and organizations to press for rapid business integration of social and environmental considerations, such as climate change, into strategy and operations. As part of this initiative, Equinix supports the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures and we plan to assess climate-related risks as we continue to evolve our sustainability efforts.
“At Equinix, we’ve always understood that we must not only deliver financial performance, but also a positive contribution to community and the environment. We remain dedicated to growing our sustainability efforts globally and understand that the future of business growth is linked to the development of sustainable innovation, technologies, and business models. We look forward to continuing to emphasize the business value of purpose and social good by supporting the launch of the U.S. chapter of A4S and ongoing collaborations.”
– Keith Taylor, Equinix, CFO
GRI 1.2. Sustainability Context.
Equinix’s leaders, employees and key stakeholders share a collective commitment to sustainability and have made it an important component of our overall growth strategy.
Stakeholder engagement is critical to the success of our sustainability efforts. We maintain open and flexible, multi-dimensional communication channels with our 9,700+ customers, in addition to our employees, investors and industry analysts. We also prioritize collaboration and partnerships with advocacy organizations and industry groups.
Equinix is especially proud to be a founding board member and training facilitator for the Renewable Energy Buyers Alliance (REBA), where we partner with over 200 companies and several NGOs to advocate for the procurement and scaling of clean and renewable energy globally.
“Equinix has gone beyond their own footprint to serve as true leaders in the clean energy buyer community, and their expertise is helping us move the needle to a cleaner, more affordable, zero-carbon energy future.”
– Miranda Ballentine, REBA CEO April 2019
The table below summarizes some of the ways we actively engage with these key stakeholders.
|Board and Full Executive Team||Quarterly||In-person executive, board and one-on-one meetings||ESG falls under the Governance Committee of the Board of Directors, as noted in our proxy, which meets 4x per year. The Sustainability Program Office informs the Board members and Executives about our Sustainability and ESG strategies, activities and progress, risks and opportunities including climate related impacts.|
|Corporate Sustainability Executive Steering Committee||Quarterly||In-person executive steering committee meetings, one-on-one meetings||The Steerco provides oversight of the Sustainability Program Office and ensures management’s support through resources, processes, systems and attention.|
|Sustainability Program Office||Full-time||Cross-functional leadership and execution||The Sustainability Program Office is part of the Investor Relations Office and provides dedicated resources for managing and developing strategies that move the business towards greater ESG oversight, leadership and transparency. It determines the cadence of annual internal and external deliverables, advises leadership, and drives alignment across ESG goals.|
|Corporate Sustainability Working Team||Twice monthly meetings and ad hoc communications||In-person meetings, conference calls, and emails||The Corporate Sustainability Working Team is comprised of functional leads representing ESG pillars and marketing, as well as 20+ additional functional area leaders. This Working Team sets goals, completes specific deliverables and activities, collects metrics and communicates progress to the Program Office. It also manages risks and opportunities and identifies ideas to advance ESG at Equinix. Global team members work with designated regional leads to disseminate information and conduct work.|
|Sustainability Marketing Council||Twice monthly meetings, function specific meetings as needed and ad hoc communications||In-person meetings, conference calls and emails, cross-functional and regional support of marketing and communications implementation||The newly formed Sustainability Marketing Council is comprised of regional, cross-functional representation across the marketing, product and sales organizations to develop and drive annual marketing key performance indicators (KPIs) that increase awareness of corporate sustainability efforts globally to our internal and external stakeholders.|
|Employees||Biannual employee surveys, with sustainability surveys of specific sub-sets of employees; (e.g.., sales,) conducted annually. Internal “HUB” articles occur monthly or more frequently.||Third-party administered Pulse Survey platform and management relationships, including performance reviews, company meetings, exit interviews, and other internal articles and activities. Ad hoc sustainability surveys conducted via email or online survey tools.||Activities such as the biannual Pulse Survey and departing employee exit interviews provide quantifiable information about Equinix’s success as an employer. Less formal communications provide ongoing feedback and add richness to these conversations. Understanding the sustainability priorities of Equinix’s employees, including its sales and marketing teams, is also becoming increasingly important to the development of our ESG program. Surveys that incorporated ESG topics in 2019 included sales director surveys, well-being, belonging and other important organizational surveys. Educational trainings were provided throughout the year to specific Equinix groups about our sustainability strategies and progress and sustainability is included in new-hire training.|
|Customers||Ad hoc, monthly and annual global customer surveys and audits||In-person meetings, emails with account management teams, global customer NPS surveys and annual Customer Advisory Board meetings||Delivering a high-quality, high-value experience is a top Equinix priority. Sustainability strategies, programs and data hold an increasingly important place in the customer journey. Our Customer Experience Team provides our customers with several official channels for giving feedback and making sustainability requests. Inputs vary from open-ended comment forms, in-depth surveys with scored questions, and participation in face-to-face meetings. We aim to reach 100% of our customers through our ongoing Net Promoter Score (NPS) survey, as well as continuous listening and learning across all of our customer relationships.|
|Vendors and Service Providers||Ad hoc||Account management and vendor selection process||Equinix vendors have strong business relationships with the groups they serve. Equinix has always required the highest standards of its vendors and formalized that expectation in its 2015 Business Partner Code of Conduct. In addition, Equinix is currently evolving its global procurement Know-Your-Supplier initiative to include sustainability parameters. All new suppliers must agree to terms and conditions that cover environment, health and safety topics, among other priority commitments.|
|Investors, Analysts and Third-Party Rating Groups||Quarterly, annually and ad hoc||Conference calls, annual meeting, Analyst Days, voluntary disclosure in surveys, Executive led coalitions such as A4S and CECP||Our Investor Relations team maintains active communication with investors and equity research analysts. Equinix responds to information requests from a variety of stakeholders including the media. Equinix seeks opportunities for leadership, and recently joined the USA Chapter of the A4S CFO Leadership Network.|
|Advocacy and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO)||Ad hoc||Conference calls, conferences, and signatures on white papers and letters||Equinix participates in a variety of industry and NGO advocacy opportunities, initiatives and activities. Some key organizations include:|
|Government and Regulatory Bodies||Ad hoc||Conference calls, conferences, signatures on white papers, public comments and letters, in-person advocacy at country, state and local levels||Equinix seeks opportunities to provide regular input into government reviews including those for utility planning processes and energy efficiency regulatory policies. Groups and initiatives we have collaborated with include:|
GRI 1.1. Stakeholder Inclusiveness table.
Completed in the Fall of 2018, our Sustainability Materiality Assessment expands upon Equinix’s initial Materiality Assessment in 2015 and guides the prioritization of ESG programs at Equinix. All the plotted topics included in the matrix below are considered significant to Equinix. Topics that have the greatest impact on Equinix – located at the top right – reflect areas where the company has unique capabilities to address these topics. Moving forward, Equinix will continue to revisit our materiality assessment to further evaluate these areas and update them as appropriate.
GRI 1.2 and 1.3. Materiality. GRI 2.3. Material Topics.
Our renewable energy procurement, sustainable innovations and commitment to diversity, inclusion and belonging have been recognized by industry and non-government organizations worldwide.
This report has been prepared in accordance with Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Standards. The data in this report represents Equinix’s coverage of material topics within Equinix’s operational control boundary in Calendar Year 2019. The reporting period is January 1, 2019 to December 31, 2019, unless otherwise noted with specific data. The report’s scope, unless otherwise specified, covers all Equinix global operations and offices. Equinix consistently maintains metrics and benchmarks and utilizes a robust internal tracking template to facilitate comparability of data over time. Changes in boundaries are disclosed when necessary. Questions, comments and concerns can be submitted to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
GRI 1.4. Completeness. GRI 1.5. Accuracy. GRI 1.6. Balance. GRI 1.7. Clarity. GRI 1.8. Comparability. GRI 1.9. Reliability. GRI 1.10. Timeliness. GRI 2.1 Applying the Reporting Principles. GRI 2.3 Material Topics. GRI 2.4 Boundary.