Patagonia continues to walk the talk, goes LEED.

Via Waylon Lewis
on Feb 3, 2009
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This might sound like just another nice little ‘big company goes green‘ story…but going LEED is tought, pricey (though ultimately saves a ton of green). More importantly, this is Patagonia we’re talking about—the original company to raise the bar on transparency, walking the green talk, and letting their mission guide their motives, rather than the other way around.


Retail: Patagonia takes LEED in sustainability

By Bob Trebilcock, Editor at Large –Modern Materials Handling,01/19/2009



For as long as there have been physicians, that oath has guided the practice of medicine.

It also sums up Patagonia’s approach to business. “Build the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, and use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis,” is the mission statement that guides the Ventura, Calif.-based retailer of outdoor clothing, technical apparel, and gear for climbing, hiking, skiing, surfing and fishing.

“Whether we’re designing a new product, sourcing contract manufacturing sites, or building a new distribution center, everything we do goes back to the mission statement,” says Dave Abeloe, director of Patagonia’s 342,000-square-foot distribution center in Reno, Nev. “We ask ourselves: ‘What are we trying to accomplish with this project, and how can we do that while adhering to our values?’”

Patagonia’s do-no-harm ethic guided the design and construction of a 171,000-square-foot addition to the 12-year-old Reno distribution center. “We know that when we build a building, we’re going to cover several acres of ground,” Abeloe explains. “But, we can still do that in a sustainable way that minimizes the impact on the environment.”

The expansion was designed to reduce the demand for energy and to recycle and reuse building materials to create a green distribution center:

  • the building’s steel frame, insulation and window glass contain recycled materials;
  • energy-efficient lighting systems use motion sensors to help conserve electricity;
  • a radiant heating system uses copper tubing and hot water to save on natural gas during the heating season;
  • tiles and carpet include some recycled content while wood used in construction was either reclaimed or harvested in a sustainable way…for the rest, go here–it’s a great, instructive read.




About Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant magazine, now & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat." Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword's Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by "Greatist", Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: "the mindful life" beyond the choir & to all those who didn't know they gave a care. | His first book, Things I would like to do with You, is now available.


One Response to “Patagonia continues to walk the talk, goes LEED.”

  1. […] for expanding the LEED energy certification of their stores around the country and walking the walk on climate […]