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Kohl's Department Stores Becomes First Retailer to Announce Carbon Neutral Goal in Partnership with EPA Climate Leaders

Kohl’s pledges continued commitment to green power, energy management and

Submitted by: Kohl's Department Stores

Categories: Sustainability, Environment

Posted: Dec 02, 2009 – 12:22 PM EST


Kohl's Department Stores (NYSE: KSS) today became the first retailer to announce a commitment to reach net zero U.S. greenhouse gas emissions as part of its ongoing partnership with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) Climate Leaders program. To achieve this goal of being carbon neutral, Kohl's will continue to invest in projects to reduce the same amount of greenhouse gas emissions that the company emits into the atmosphere.

The goal accounts for U.S. emissions at all Kohl's facilities, including stores, distribution centers and corporate offices, as well as emissions resulting from business travel. Kohl's goal, once realized, will be equivalent to removing more than 130,842 vehicles from the road for a year or offsetting the annual emissions from electricity used by more than 99,084 homes.

"Kohl's is committed to the communities we serve, which includes taking significant steps to reduce our environmental footprint. We want to demonstrate that it is possible for a large company to have a successful business model and operate in a sustainable way," said Ken Bonning, Kohl's executive vice president of store planning and logistics. "We're pleased to be working with the U.S EPA's Climate Leaders program on this important greenhouse gas reduction initiative. By pledging to neutralize our carbon footprint, we are taking significant steps to ensure that our operations are environmentally responsible - from waste reduction to our energy programs to our building standards."

In 2007, Kohl's joined EPA Climate Leaders, a group of companies committed to reducing their impact on the global environment by analyzing and reporting aggressive greenhouse gas reduction goals. Kohl's is using 2007 as its baseline reporting year and a 714,395 metric ton carbon dioxide equivalent as its starting point. The company has committed to achieving net zero emissions by the end of 2010 and maintaining carbon neutrality through 2012, at which point the company will work with EPA on continued goal setting.

"We applaud Kohl's Department Stores for setting a goal to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions," said Susan Wickwire, Chief of EPA's Energy Supply and Industry Branch. "As a Climate Leaders partner, they're proving that they can be both industry leaders, and leaders in the fight against climate change."

Initiatives central to Kohl's achievement of its Climate Leaders goal include a continuation of the company's five environmental strategies: maximize energy efficiency, minimize waste, improve new building design, reduce emissions and encourage environmental values. Highlights include:

  • Commitment to green power: Kohl's strongly supports the development of renewable energy and was named one of EPA's 2009 Green Power Partners of the Year. The company currently ranks as the no. 1 retailer on EPA’s list of Green Power Purchasers in its Green Power Partnership. In 2009, Kohl's purchased 851 million kilowatt-hours in renewable energy credits - enough to meet 71 percent of the company's purchased electricity use. Kohl's plans to reach 100 percent green power by the end of 2010.

  • Leading solar program: Kohl's is currently the world's largest retail host of solar power with 79 solar locations in six states - California, Wisconsin, Oregon, Connecticut, Maryland and New Jersey. The company aims to expand the program into additional states in 2010 to reach more than 100 solar locations.

  • Central Energy Management Systems: As of 2008, all Kohl's locations are operated by a system that controls most interior and exterior lighting, as well as heating and cooling systems. Last year, even while adding more than one million square feet of retail space through new and existing store expansion, Kohl's reduced its greenhouse gas emissions by 12 percent.

  • ENERGY STAR: The EPA ENERGY STAR national energy performance rating system provides a score on a 1 to 100 scale relative to similar buildings nationwide, with 50 as the average score. Buildings with a score of 75 or higher are eligible to receive EPA's ENERGY STAR label. To date, more than 350 Kohl's stores have earned the ENERGY STAR label - this is more than one third of all Kohl's stores and more than 70 percent of retail buildings to date that have earned the ENERGY STAR. As a whole, Kohl's stores average an ENERGY STAR score of 72, well above industry standard.

More information about Kohl's green initiatives is available at For additional information about EPA Climate Leaders, visit

About Kohl's Department Stores
Based in Menomonee Falls, Wis., Kohl's (NYSE: KSS) is a family-focused, value-oriented specialty department store offering moderately priced, exclusive and national brand apparel, shoes, accessories, beauty and home products in an exciting shopping environment. Kohl's operates 1,059 stores in 49 states. A company committed to the communities it serves, Kohl's has raised more than $126 million for children's initiatives nationwide through its Kohl's Cares for Kids® philanthropic program, which operates under Kohl's Cares, LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Kohl's Department Stores, Inc. For a list of store locations and information, or for the added convenience of shopping online, visit

About EPA Climate Leaders
Climate Leaders is an EPA industry-government partnership that works with companies to develop comprehensive climate change strategies. Partner companies commit to reducing their impact on the global environment by completing a corporate-wide inventory of their greenhouse gas emissions based on a quality management system, setting aggressive reduction goals, and annually reporting their progress to EPA. Through program participation, companies create a credible record of their accomplishments and receive EPA recognition as corporate environmental leaders.

For more information, please contact:

Phone: 262-703-1464
Phone: 262-703-7725
Phone: 262-703-7863

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Kohl's Department Stores


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