National Park Partnership
If you travel to any national park, you are likely to see our Subaru vehicles in the parking lot. We believe it is our responsibility – and in our customers’ interest – to help protect these natural wonders for future generations. To ensure we are doing our part, we’ve partnered with the National Park Conservation Association and the National Park Foundation (NPF) since 2014 to reduce waste through the Don’t Feed the Landfills Zero-Landfill Initiative. This project focuses on three national parks ‒ Yosemite, Denali, and Grand Teton. Over the past seven years, and using more than 1,000 new waste and recycle bins, the program has diverted over 17 million pounds of waste from landfills. For 2021 alone, Yosemite diverted over 90,000 pounds of food waste, Grand Teton saved over 132,000 gallons of water through paper recycling, and Denali saved over a year of landfill space through just corrugated cardboard recycling. We also partnered with Leave No Trace, as we have since 1999, to travel the country in Subaru Outbacks educating park visitors on sustainability issues, reaching 49 states.
17 million lbs.
of waste saved from landfills
donated to our parks
saved in NPS waste fees
In total, the Don’t Feed the Landfills program has saved $1,198,532 in waste costs for the National Park Service and park partners. Subaru is the largest corporate partner of the National Park Foundation and has provided more than $63 million to organizations working in our parks since our partnership began.
Subaru is looking forward to expanding the environmental impact of our NPF partnership in the future. Starting in 2021, Subaru and NPF will focus on three initiatives:
Outdoor Exploration: Subaru will work to inspire a lifelong love of the outdoors and support programs to help people feel welcome in parks, with a particular focus on multicultural and multigenerational families, eliminating barriers and promoting broader access to national parks.
Parks of the Future: Subaru will help NPF harness the power of technology and innovation to prepare parks for the future. For example, Subaru will provide funding for programming focused on the planning and infrastructure to accommodate electric vehicles in and around national parks.
Resilience and Sustainability: Subaru will provide funding to enhance environmental stewardship efforts in the national parks, including expanding waste reduction, recycling, and visitor education.
Subaru is really setting the example of how companies can partner to support national parks in meaningful ways by helping ensure national parks are not only sustainable, but also accessible and welcoming to all, and ready to meet the demands of the future.”
– Will Shafroth, President and CEO of the National Park Foundation
National Forest Foundation
Wildfires have reached historic levels. Subaru and its retailers continue to partner with the National Forest Foundation to help restore and reforest public national forests affected by severe wildfires. Since 2019, 500,000 trees have been planted in national forests in California. An additional 500,000 trees are being planted in National Forests in Idaho, Oregon, and Washington. In total, Subaru and our retailers will help replant 1 million trees in National Forests deforested by wildfires.
food waste diverted from landfills yearly
increase in amount of waste recycled by fans
½ the waste
generated per fan
Subaru Park Zero-Landfill
We began our partnership with the Major League Soccer (MLS) team, The Philadelphia Union, in 2020, naming the team’s stadium Subaru Park and initiating a goal to be the first zero-landfill MLS stadium. The very next year, the stadium achieved and celebrated its goal with a ceremonial re-opening as the league’s first zero-landfill stadium!
As part of the stadium’s sustainable operations, we created the Subaru Park Garden for Good, with more than 70 Subaru volunteers helping to grow organic produce for local food pantries in Chester, Pennsylvania. In 2021, the garden donated almost 2,000 pounds of produce, or almost 8,000 servings of fruits or vegetables, for local food banks.
Ten years ago, Subaru launched the Subaru Eco-Friendly Program to inspire retailers to align their operational activities with our environmental focus. Now in its 10th year, the program has certified more than a third of Subaru retailers as Eco-Friendly. Retailers earned this certification by meeting our requirements in five areas: energy efficiency, water conservation, recycling, waste management, and environmentally focused community involvement. We are appreciative of the hard work our certified retailers have put in to make a meaningful impact on the environment.
TerraCycle® collects hard-to-recycle waste and turns those materials into new items like park benches, bike racks, picnic tables, and flowerpots. Through the placement of TerraCycle Zero Waste Boxes™ in our corporate offices, retail facilities, and partners, we have been able to recycle waste that would have ended up in the trash. Now in its fifth year, this project reached a milestone of more than 6 million pieces of waste collected and recycled! Subaru is the largest automotive partner for TerraCycle diverting hard-to-recycle waste from landfills.
In 2019, Subaru began a partnership with REI to help customers dispose of hard-to-recycle waste in their stores. Through 2021, all 165 REI stores have Terracycle Zero Waste Boxes™ for snack wrappers.
Sustainable Subaru Gear
Subaru Gear, managed by our partners at Staples Corporate, offers Subaru-branded clothing and products made by companies that embrace the Subaru Love Promise. Subaru Gear is now processed entirely at a zero-waste-to-landfill facility. In 2021, Subaru Gear signed on to a Science Based Targets initiative to reduce carbon emissions from production by 2030. These efforts included:
- Manufacturing apparel polybags which use 100% recycled post-industrial waste, saving about 500 barrels of oil annually.
- Shipping orders using only boxes made from recycled post-consumer waste.
- Upgrading to 100% renewable energy in 2021.
- Using sustainable tri-blend T-shirts from AllMade®, saving more than 7 million gallons of water this year alone.
Pennsylvania Horticultural Society Partnership
As part of our partnership with the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society (PHS), we participated for our 21st year in the Philadelphia Flower Show. The flower show has allowed us to connect with people in our community, helping to share the restorative and healing power of nature and plants, through two major complimentary programs:
- Bird Tours through FDR Park, guided by the Delaware Valley Ornithological Club. At the end of the flower show we donated 15 sets of binoculars, field guides, life list cards, and bird posters from the event to the local libraries in Philadelphia for people to borrow and enjoy bird watching.
- Potting Parties held by Tu Bloom, the botanical artist for the Grammy Awards. The event taught more than 2,000 participants how to plant their own flower baskets that they then could bring home to enjoy.
Gold Medal Plant Sale Subaru regularly hosts a Gold Medal Plant Sale for colleagues as part of our longstanding partnership with PHS. The sale helps inspire our employees to create sustainable landscapes at home that are both beautiful and wildlife friendly, featuring low-impact, native, flowering plants. In 2021, more than 1,000 perennials were sold at our Camden headquarters.
Our hometown of Camden, New Jersey, is a focal point for our impact, including our environmental footprint, reflecting our long-term commitment to a healthy planet. From our zero-landfill, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED)-certified headquarters to our regular volunteering at community clean-ups, we do our best to pursue this mission right where we live and work.
LEED Silver Headquarters
Our Camden headquarters building is LEED Silver certified, reflecting our promise to create a sustainable environment both inside and outside our workplace walls in our hometown. Some notable features of our headquarters include:
- 100% green renewable power.
- 65 on-site EV charging stations ready for the arrival of the 2022 Solterra, our all-new electric SUV.
- Energy-efficient heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) infrastructure and light-emitting diode (LED) lighting throughout the building.
- Reclaimed wood décor in our lobby areas.
- Employee workstations manufactured with partially recycled material.
- A Pennsylvania Horticultural Society–designed drought-tolerant landscape that includes native perennials, hardwoods, and grass species.
- Stormwater management practices that include raising site grades, adding wetland species in poor drainage areas, and the installation of a rain garden.
- ISO 14001 certified for 17 years.
Share the Love Garden
The Subaru Share the Love ® Garden is now in its 14th consecutive year of operation. The organic garden on the grounds of our headquarters is designed by a local urban farming nonprofit, tended by Subaru teammates, and harvested to donate to a local food bank. Over the garden’s 14-year lifespan, Subaru has donated over 7,600 pounds of produce to local families in need.
For more details on the Share the Love Garden, see Subaru Loves to Help.
August 2021 marked a third of a century of recycling at Subaru. We voluntarily initiated recycling at Subaru headquarters in 1988, before state mandates took effect, with paper and aluminum soda can collection as our focus. Since these early days, we have continually assessed and strengthened our waste management plans with new initiatives. In 2021, we eliminated single-use plastic beverage containers to reduce plastic waste by opting for aluminum cans, which are infinitely recyclable.
We utilize a multi-faceted food waste reduction, recovery, and recycling program to help minimize the cost and environmental impact of food waste. Our dining partner, Eurest, is vital in this effort and follows low-food-waste practices and recipes. Eurest continuously engages in conservation efforts to reduce, reuse, and recycle via its Waste Not Program. Scrap containers are strategically placed throughout our offices to collect employee dining waste, which is then transported to several local farms for animal feed and composting.
Food Waste Reduction
food waste diverted from landfills
250,000 lbs. of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e)
prevented from entering atmosphere*
*according to the United Nations methodology
through our printing partnerships
Through our partnership with Allied Printing, we utilize the PrintReleaf program, which measures our paper consumption and then offsets our paper footprint by automatically reforesting at planting sites of our choice. In 2021, Subaru efforts resulted in planting over 1,000 trees through our mailings. We continue to look for ways to expand this program.
We also strive to support our colleagues in sustainable behaviors that reduce their environmental impact in their homes. Our 2021 employee-led Earth Day event collected one ton of electronic waste (e-waste) and 1.75 tons of paper to shred and recycle, equivalent to the weight of almost two Subaru Imprezas. Our regularly occurring e-waste pick-ups in 2021 brought our total to 3.81 tons of waste collected for proper disposal or recycling.
In the past, printed documents were needed for all stages of welcoming a new retailer into the Subaru Family. Our new paperless duplicate Master Certificate of Origin request process between Subaru and our retailers launched in November 2021 with the purpose of saving time and paper for retailers and headquarters colleagues. Based on our data collection prior to program launch and after implementation, we expect to save over 7,000 sheets of paper annually.
As the climate changes, the need for effective stormwater management in urban areas becomes increasingly critical. Stormwater management challenges during the design and construction of our headquarters building led to unique, proactive solutions like raising existing site grades as much as five feet to better manage stormwater on site and incorporating wetland vegetation into areas with poor drainage. The property also includes a rain garden to counter the effects of flooding and mitigate runoff to the nearby Cooper River.
As part of the rain garden upkeep and management, Subaru developed a partnership with the Center for Family Services PowerCorps Camden, providing students with sustainability knowledge they can utilize to tackle pressing environmental challenges in their community. In September, we hosted students from PowerCorps at the Subaru of America, Inc. headquarters to teach them about our stormwater management efforts and future opportunities available in the stormwater management field. A local civil engineer shared his real-world design expertise and technical knowledge about stormwater management with the students and answered questions about the functionality and design of our subsurface stormwater collection system. We plan to expand this educational opportunity in years to come.
In an effort to continuously improve our building efficiency, our headquarters and National Service Training Center buildings received upgrades to their building automation systems in 2021. These changes provide more comprehensive monitoring of the HVAC infrastructure performance of each building, which helps us better manage our energy efficiency and reduce CO2 emissions.
In April 2021, we installed Daylight Harvesting technology in our headquarters lobby, allowing us to further reduce energy consumption and CO2 emissions by using sunlight to offset the amount of electric lighting needed to properly light a space – all on an automated system.
Solar Expansion in Rialto, California
In 2021, our solar energy portfolio expanded when our Southern California Regional Distribution Center moved operations to a new facility equipped with a two-megawatt solar array that generates clean energy for California’s electric grid. The array saves approximately 1,417 tons of CO2 per year.* This transition to a facility equipped with solar signifies the expansion of our renewable energy investments as we strategize ways to decrease the GHG emissions associated with our operations.
* Based on the U.S. EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Equivalencies Calculator