Environmental Sustainability Statement

Responsibility first

Environmental Sustainability Statement

October 2013

Microsoft Ltd firmly recognises the need to develop environmental excellence in the stewardship of its business, as well as to engender environmentally responsible behaviour from its employees. We are committed to developing environmental excellence in our business operations, implementing best practice policies to monitor and reduce our carbon footprint, water consumption and production and management of waste, whilst increasing the energy efficiency of our products, business operations and working practices. We are also monitoring our local carbon emissions, and have previously commissioned a full audit of our UK operations by the Carbon Trust.

The Microsoft Ltd environmental initiative falls under the scope of the global Microsoft Environmental Sustainability plan. We strongly believe that software has unparalleled potential to deliver new innovations that will truly enable long term sustainability for other individuals and organisations, and our aim is to use software to help solve today’s environmental challenges and enable long term sustainability, whilst reducing cost.

Our strategy for environmental sustainability is threefold:

  • To reduce our own carbon footprint by driving down our energy consumption, reducing business travel and re-thinking our working practices
  • To work in partnership with our industry peers to reduce the current impact of the IT (products and industry) on global carbon emissions
  • To use technology innovations to reduce global environmental impact and help to reduce carbon emissions from all industries

Microsoft Corporate Environmental Principles

In May 2012, Microsoft made a commitment to make our operations carbon neutral: to achieve net zero emissions for our datacentres, software development labs, offices, and employee business air travel in over 100 countries around the world. To achieve this goal, we have implemented an internal carbon fee which places a price on carbon and aims to improve energy efficiency, increase our purchase of renewable energy, improve data collection and reporting, and further aligns to our ongoing goal of reducing our environmental impact.

Our ongoing commitment includes producing accurate and transparent reports on the environmental impact of our operations, such as voluntary reporting under the Carbon Disclosure Project.

Microsoft Ltd follows strict policies to ensure that the company remains in full compliance with international environmental regulations and the specific environmental requirements applying to our business.

Microsoft Ltd actively works to protect our natural resources by conserving, reusing, and recycling.

Where feasible, Microsoft Ltd conserves natural resources by using recycled materials and supplies, efficiently using energy, and participating in recycling programs for Microsoft products after they have served their useful life. Microsoft encourages and supports the sustainable use of renewable natural resources.

Reducing and disposing of waste.

Microsoft Ltd reduces and where possible eliminates waste through source reduction and recycling at company facilities. All waste is safely and responsibly handled and disposed of.

Developing safe and sustainable products.

Microsoft develops, manufactures, and markets products that are safe for their intended use. Our environmental policies and practices aim to protect, conserve, and sustain the world's natural resources as well as to protect Microsoft customers and the communities in which we live and operate.

Making environmental stewardship part of our business relationships.

At Microsoft, we strive to incorporate our environmental principles into our business relationships. We seek similar commitments to the environment from our major suppliers. We participate in industry groups to set industry standards on environmental practices. We strive to keep our customers informed about our efforts, and we welcome their feedback.

Continually improving our performance.

We set objectives and targets to ensure an ongoing commitment to continuous improvement in our environmental performance and the prevention of pollution from our activities. Microsoft values employee contributions to our environmental initiatives. We regularly review our business activity and assess our environmental programs, practices, and goals to evaluate progress and to identify areas in which further improvements can be made.

Demonstrating responsibility to our stakeholders.

We engage our stakeholders about our objectives and targets, and we periodically communicate our progress to the Board, our shareholders, our customers, and members of the public.

Hugh Milward
Hugh Milward,
Director of Citizenship and Corporate Affairs, Microsoft Ltd