AMS Fulfillment is a bi-coastal full service fulfillment company with eight warehouses and approximately 700 employees. We are proud to be a B Corporation, dedicated to reducing our environmental impact with the goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2023. AMS has organized a Green Team, made up of environmental activists in all of the company locations. The Green Team collaborates on a weekly basis, setting goals and identifying operational solutions that balance environmental sustainability with financial profitability. We also send out weekly recycling tips to our employees. Each month we prepare a Green Team News blog, letting our clients and employees know how we are doing in our efforts.
We know that warehouses produce environmental pollution mostly from heating, cooling, and lighting. Generally, the bigger the warehouse, the larger the carbon footprint. A sustainable warehouse is a facility that minimizes the production of waste and energy consumption. We also know that recycling in a warehouse is essential in reducing the carbon footprint.
In an effort to see how AMS Fulfillment warehouses are doing in reducing the carbon footprint with regard to heating, cooling and lighting, we asked the Green Team the following:
Has AMS upgraded to high-efficiency lighting, and is AMS using electric equipment vs propane or gasoline?
We have installed LED lighting and natural skylights in every warehouse, and energy efficient bulbs. We have motion sensor lighting throughout most of our warehouses, and lobbies are predominantly naturally lit. With regard to equipment, AMS partnered with energy saving consultants to reduce electrical consumption by 10% per hour of charge time from forklifts using charging stations, and we have replaced our propane powered machinery with rechargeable battery-type machines.
Does AMS reduce, reuse and recycle materials?
Recycling started in the company’s office when the company was established some 20 years ago. Over the years the recycling became companywide and included corrugate/paper, plastics and pallets. We gave attention to using the right size packaging to prevent waste and began promoting and purchasing packaging/void fill that experts agree to be the most sustainable for the planet. The Green Team has also implemented a partnership with Republic in recyclable bin sortation to sort landfill vs. recycling.
Our latest recycling news from the Green Team is as follows:
- Team members met with LA City recycling program team for information on programs and do’s/don’ts.
- Team will be meeting with Waste Management, our local waste provider.
- Team is working with vendors to order and promote the most environmentally friendly packaging/void fill options for our clients.
- Team is working with vendors to order environmentally friendly/eco certified products where such options exist, and we are developing a catalog for best use packing material.
- Team is looking at how to partner with our clients to steer them towards environmentally friendlier packaging solutions (since we don’t have control over their specifications).
- Team is registered with the Sustainable Packing Coalition, where we can access the tools, applications, and services to help AMS take meaningful action toward packaging sustainability.
- Team is developing recycling program to increase the amount of bins per stretch of walking distance, color coding bins, with proper signage in all locations.
- Team in New Holland, PA is partnering with local Amish communities to use corrugate as horse bedding. East Coast Facilities are recycling their compacted corrugate.
- Team is aggressively seeking best solution for plastic stretch film. We have identified a company that recycles all plastic types.
- Team is developing an employee exchange program where employees can donate or trade unused household items with other employees.
- Team is researching auto baggers to reduce label waste.
- Team is researching metal recycling for unused racking. Broken pallets are recycled.
- Team collaborates with the Volunteer Community to get employees together for community clean up days, such as the SCV River Rally cleanup.
- Team is partnering with Electronic Recycling Association (ERA) a non-profit organization that has been reducing unnecessary electronic waste since 2004.
- Team is researching Certified Incinerators for materials not able to be properly recycled.
Are there any examples of AMS green logistics with regard to employee transportation?
Yes, AMS has reduced energy consumption by Vanpooling. Utilizing Vanpooling our employees have taken 22 vehicles off the road. And, recently AMS launched RideMatch for AMS Employee carpooling! RideMatch is an online platform that connects AMS drivers with AMS employees that need rides. Sharing a ride to work can save commuters time and money and also reduce carbon emissions.
Is there any other Green Team News to share this month?
In our efforts to become Carbon Neutral
- We registered with the Climate Registry which is an organization that provides us with the tools to measure and report our carbon footprint.
- AMS hired a credentialed LEED Green Associate as a summer intern to spearhead this program along with one of our Team members.
- We are working with a 3rd party to take some early steps towards becoming Carbon Neutral from a facilities perspective.
Are AMS Employees and Clients involved in the Green efforts?
The Green Team is sending frequent e-mail blasts to employees related to how we can all do our part, with Team members providing an example, using designated bins for plastics, paper, and so on.
We are encouraging employees to take Green Team walks through the warehouses to ensure that the protocols we have put in place are being followed in all locations.
The Team is working with Client Services and our makeup accounts to encourage donation of damaged or returned mascara wands to help an organization called Wands for Wildlife. The organization uses the donated mascara wands in cleaning small rescued animals.
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Comment from a Green Team member, Cassandra C.
I just joined the Green team a few months ago and although I am new to the team, I am already picking up new green habits including recycling my bottles and plastic bags in the office and at home.
When anyone on the team has an idea of creating something positive for AMS that has an even bigger purpose for the world, the rest of the team members show their support 100%. I noticed when I started taking my bottles to the right bin, there were other employees doing the same. Doing anything green has a positive chain reaction and I am glad each and every one of us has the power to do this. I am learning something new each call from our Team members. We have such bright and motivated people on this team and it is truly an honor to be working side by side with them!
The Green Team is helping me create healthy habits for our environment and explore more of what our clients are using in their packaging. Team work is what makes the Green Team work, anyone at AMS and outside of AMS that participates in recycling and contributes great ideas, I say thank you, because it truly starts with us as individuals. We all can and will make a difference!