Equinix is the largest global data center and interconnection REIT, connecting the world’s leading businesses to their customers, employees and partners globally. We are also committed to building a business that can help create a future where global climate change is no longer a threat, people are treated fairly no matter who they are; and our moral compass is steadfast in the face of external threats to our business.
Equinix is the place where the digital world connects. We offer our customers an equitable and proven path forward to reach everywhere, interconnect everyone and integrate everything they need to create the best future possible for their digital businesses. This includes enabling interconnection at the edge, where companies are interacting with each other in vibrant ecosystems to deliver new value to the global economy.
We believe in creating shared value with our customers, partners, investors and employees, ensuring we are good stewards of environmental and human capital. Our growth will be defined by our adherence to best-in-class ESG practices. We will prioritize responsible energy usage, and high standards of safety, and commit to protecting against external threats such as climate change and data security. We will be both steadfast and nimble in our response to these and other challenges that our world faces in increasingly globalized markets.
We routinely evaluate our ESG programs to increase the benefits they bring in a changing world. Our commitments to renewable energy, increasing efficiency, and improving resiliency have never wavered. Our employee and community engagement programs integrate purpose, passion and impact to deliver on our promise that employees are safe, they belong, and they matter. And our governance and ethics programs ensure that we are all working together to build an organization that is defined by its honesty, integrity and consistently ethical behavior.
Equinix, along with other companies, countries and Non-Government Organizations (NGOs), has chosen to align our objectives with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in order to accelerate our collective progress on the world’s most important social and environmental challenges. We have prioritized our alignment with the six SDGs that are the most relevant and material to our business.
A core component of Equinix’s sustainability strategy is engagement. We maintain open and flexible, multi-dimensional communication channels with our nearly 10,000 enterprise and service provider customers, in addition to our employees, investors and other entities such as advocacy organizations and industry groups. The table below summarizes some of the ways we actively engage with these key stakeholders.
|Board and Full|
|Quarterly||In-person executive staff and board meetings, one-on-one meetings||Inform Equinix’s Board of Directors and Executives about our Corporate Sustainability and ESG strategy, activities and progress. including climate-related risks and for resources and makes requests. ESG falls under the Governance Committee of the Board of Directors, as noted in our proxy, which meets 4x year.|
|Corporate Sustainability Executive Steering Committee||Quarterly||In-person executive steering committee meetings, one-on-one meetings||Discusses evolving strategy and reporting requirements around Corporate Sustainability and ESG, receives feedback and advocates for resources, and makes requests for prioritizing activities and developing future improvements.|
|Corporate Sustainability Working Team||Twice monthly meetings and ad hoc communications||In-person meetings, conference calls, and emails||Equinix’s Corporate Sustainability program is led by a Working Team whose 20+ members complete activities, including benchmarking and metrics collection, setting goals and communicating progress, identifying risks and opportunities, and discussing new ideas to advance ESG at Equinix. Global team members work with designated regional leads to disseminate information and conduct work.|
|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 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 teams, is also becoming increasing important to developing our ESG program.|
|Customers||Ad hoc, monthly and annual global customer surveys and audits||In-person meetings, emails with account management teams, global customer NPS surveys, annual Customer Advisory Board meetings||Customer experience is a primary goal of Equinix. Our Customer Experience Team measures customers’ experiences in value moments throughout their customer journey. Our customers have several official channels for giving feedback and making sustainability requests. Inputs vary from open-ended comment forms to in-depth surveys with scored questions. 100% of customers received customer satisfaction surveys in 2018. Notably, ESG and sustainability data are frequently requested in annual audits from numerous customers.|
|Vendors and Service Providers||Ad hoc||Account management, vendor selection process||Equinix vendors have personal relationships with the groups they serve. Since June 2015, Equinix also has a Business Partner Code of Conduct included as part of its Global Supplier Information Form (GSIF) and is currently evolving its global procurement Know-Your-Supplier initiative to include sustainability parameters.|
|Investors, Analysts and Third-Party Rating Groups||Quarterly, annually and ad hoc||Conference calls, annual meeting, Analyst Days, voluntary disclosure in annual surveys, CEO-led or CFO-led coalitions such as A4S and CECP||Our Investor Relations team maintains active lines of communication with our investors and key investor analysts and research firms. 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, 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 input into government review processes such as utility planning processes and energy efficiency policies. Groups or activities we have worked with include:|
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 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 such concerns. Moving forward, Equinix will continue to revisit our materiality assessment to further evaluate these areas and update them as appropriate.
GRI 1.3. Materiality. GRI 2.3. Material Topics.
Our commitment to sustainability, operating responsibly and our novel use of green technologies within our data centers has won the recognition of industry and governmental groups.
Equinix was a winner of the Customer Project Award: Data Center Energy Storage & Microgrids category for its 37 MW Bloom Energy fuel cell deployment.
For two years in a row (2017 and 2018), Equinix has been selected for the Excellence in Green Power category of the EPA’s Green Power Leadership Awards. The annual awards recognize America’s leading green power users for their commitment and contribution to advancing the development of the nation’s voluntary green power market.
On November 14, 2018, Equinix received the 2018 SEAL business sustainability award for its leadership and commitment to environmental and sustainability initiatives. Key criteria for selection included: Impact Metrics, Innovation, Sharing of Insights, and Investment Levels.
As of July 29, 2019, Equinix ranked #4 on the U.S. EPA’s National Top 100 list of green power users – up from 6th in the previous ranking. In 2018, Equinix reported a total of 2,200 GWh of green power usage in the U.S., representing 100% of our U.S. load including ex-Verizon data centers. Equinix debuted in 2015, at a rank of 18th in the Top 100 of renewable energy users in the nation. In addition, we are recognized for our Long-Term Green Power Contracts, having executed 225 MW of long-term wind virtual power purchase agreement (VPPA) contracts.
In 2018, Equinix achieved a Silver-level recognition with EcoVadis for its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) practices.
The National Associate of Real Estate Investment Trusts (NAREIT) honored Equinix in the data centers category for demonstrating superior sustainability practices across all sustainability criteria including ESG practices.
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 2018. The reporting period is January 1, 2018 to December 31, 2018, 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.
[FOOTNOTE: 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 2.4 Boundary. ]