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How Akamai’s Employees Help Us Achieve Our Sustainability Goals

Courtney Hadden

Written by

Courtney Hadden

May 26, 2022

Courtney Hadden joined Akamai's Corporate Sustainability team in 2019, bringing her knowledge and expertise of Corporate Social Responsibility, community and employee engagement, and cause marketing to helping Akamai integrate our environmental commitments into our business. Courtney has worked with both non-profit organizations and corporations - such as Keurig Dr Pepper, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and The Walt Disney Company - and has unique experience in bringing together cause and value.

April 2022 marked the second annual Akamai Earth Month celebration — a campaign that empowers our employees to take small actions at home and in their communities that make a positive difference for our planet. Akamai joins several organizations across the globe in making significant contributions to the environmental sustainability movement. In doing so, we’re able to help ensure our planet remains safe for everyone now and in the future.

But that’s just one sustainability initiative spearheaded by the Akamai team. Read on to learn more about our history with environmental sustainability, the Akamai Earth Month campaign, and other initiatives that inspire employees to take action in their communities and environments.

Akamai’s history with environmental sustainability

Akamai and environmental sustainability have gone hand in hand for more than a decade. In 2009, we embarked on a mission to create a more sustainable enterprise, and in 2015, we committed to reducing our overall emissions 30% year over year, powering our network with 50% renewable energy, and recycling 100% of our e-waste by 2020. 

Each of those goals was met within the established five-year period. In that time, the available capacity of the Akamai Intelligent Edge Platform grew by more than 350%, yet it used 10 times less energy per unit of capacity than it did in 2015.

Focusing on an emissions-free edge platform

Then, in 2021, Akamai proceeded to advance our environmental, social, and governance (ESG) initiatives by establishing a formal ESG office. The goal of this ESG office is to develop and execute a comprehensive yet cohesive ESG strategy. This refined initiative will allow us to better focus on ushering in a completely emissions-free Akamai Intelligent Edge Platform that’s 100% powered by renewable energy by 2030. 

Akamai’s overall sustainability impact is calculated by analyzing the money and sustainability impact units saved as a result of taking environmentally sustainable measures. These impact units include:

  • Gallons of fuel

  • Pounds of carbon dioxide emissions

  • Kilowatt hours of electricity

  • Pounds of waste

  • Gallons of water

  • Number of trees

Five key sustainability goals

In 2021, Akamai developed five ambitious sustainability goals to achieve by 2030. These goals focus on three key areas of our business: the Akamai Intelligent Edge Platform, the communities in which we live and work, and our global supply chain. 

  1. 100% renewably sourced energy
    By prioritizing renewable energy, Akamai plans to power 100% of its global operations by 2030. When sufficient renewable energy supply is unavailable, the company will use attestable and traceable sources of renewable energy certificates to reach its goals. Currently, Akamai uses renewable sources for 50% of all energy needs, which was achieved through investments in renewable energy projects, including wind farms in Texas and Illinois and a solar array in Virginia.

  2. 50% more energy-efficient platform
    Akamai is developing hardware and software efficiencies to reduce power by 50% for our Global Intelligent Edge Platform, which consists of approximately 325,000 servers in more than 135 countries and nearly 1,435 networks worldwide.

  3. 100% platform emissions mitigation
    Akamai is working with data center providers and landlords to provide attestable sources of renewable power equivalent to our footprint. In cases for which this isn’t possible, we will look to reduce absolute emissions through credible greenhouse gas offsets from organizations like the American Carbon Registry and Climate Action Reserve, or through new and emerging capture technology.

  4. Responsible supply chain management
    Akamai plans to institute a new responsible supply chain program to align the environmental and social goals of our top suppliers with our corporate goals. The company will engage with its top suppliers to baseline and quantify scope 3 emissions with a goal toward a measurable reduction by 2030.

  5. Global expansion of 100% electronic waste recycling program
    Over the next 10 years, Akamai aims to bring efficiency to our partner program by disposing 100% of our e-waste at the end of the hardware’s useful life (in its country of origin, when feasible). 

Combined, our sustainability goals prime us to build a more environmentally friendly global internet and inspire more environmental innovation throughout the world.

"Akamai believes that corporations share the responsibility to protect the earth’s natural resources. These 2030 goals reflect our commitment to this belief. Moreover, Akamai realizes that being environmentally conscious is not only the right thing to do, it also makes good business sense. These five steps are designed to minimize our carbon footprint while maximizing the benefits to Akamai." — Nicole Fitzpatrick, Chief ESG Officer and Deputy General Counsel at Akamai

Engaging employees with environmental and sustainability goals

In 2022, Akamai committed to raising further environmental awareness among employees while engaging them with the company’s environmental impact and 2030 sustainability goals. To execute on this ambitious goal, Akamai implemented a sustainability engagement campaign consisting of Akamai Earth Month and the launch of the Akamai Green Team in April 2022. The Green Team currently has more than 300 members and 10 global volunteer leaders.

Akamai Earth Month 2022

For our second annual Akamai Earth Month celebration, we delivered thoughtful campaigns that inspired our employees to go #GreenWithAkamai by making more sustainable decisions at home. They were able to participate in wellness activities, such as a compost boot camp and volunteer opportunities with a number of local organizations. 

Through this month-long celebration offering a diverse and inclusive range of activities, we were able to promote Akamai employee engagement with environmental sustainability. During Akamai Earth Month, Akamai also announced our new Carbon Calculator for Akamai customers, which calculates emissions based on customer usage of the Akamai platform. This product is integrated with the Akamai Control Center, and is available for all customers who use delivery products.

 

Photo from an Akamai employee showing off their sustainable home office during Akamai Earth Month. Photo from an Akamai employee showing off their sustainable home office during Akamai Earth Month.

 

Earth Month Home Office Challenge

As the cornerstone of Akamai Earth Month 2022, the Home Office Challenge campaign was designed to help our employees feel more empowered to make their at-home work routines greener and more sustainable. It included:

  • The launch of an employee carbon calculator to help staff understand how they affect Earth’s climate

  • Tips for reducing home office power consumption

  • Opportunities for employees to show off their remote home offices

  • A forum to share green tips for healthy home spaces

In 2022, almost 600 employees participated in Akamai Earth Month, taking more than 7,000 actions to benefit the planet while uploading 300+ photos of ways they felt inspired to give back to our Earth. 

The complete impact of Akamai’s Earth Month 2022 can be seen below:

 

The employee engagement software company WeSpire collaborated with Quantis, a leading environmental consulting firm, to illustrate the environmental savings that resulted from Akamai Earth Month 2022. The employee engagement software company WeSpire collaborated with Quantis, a leading environmental consulting firm, to illustrate the environmental savings that resulted from Akamai Earth Month 2022.

Thanks to Akamai Earth Month, we were able to decrease emissions by 137,184 lbs in 2022, a massive improvement from our decrease of 44,714 lbs in 2021. This demonstrates a 300% impact year-over-year, and aligns our employee action with corporate action.

 

Akamai employee Stephanie Miller enjoying nature for Akamai Earth Month. Akamai employee Stephanie Miller enjoying nature for Akamai Earth Month.

Here’s what one Akamai Green Team Leader had to say about their participation in Akamai Earth Month 2022:

“I’m a runner. I’m a hiker. And I love spending as much time outdoors as I can. I often feel like I’m the best version of myself when I’m outside. Whether it is taking in the limitless ocean or observing the flora and fauna of my parents’ wooded lot, nature’s beauty never ceases to amaze me. But I worry about the future of our planet and the crisis that we’re in. 
Akamai Earth Month offers me and my colleagues a time to acknowledge what’s wrong with our planet and commit to doing something about it! As an example, this month I attended a webinar organized by Akamai on home composting. Not only did I learn how composting cuts down on landfill, but I also got a better understanding of how much food waste I was creating. By thinking about my eating habits and disposal and taking small steps for managing my waste, I can create a better future for Earth.” — Stephanie Miller, Director of Employee Relations at Akamai

Akamai: one community to protect our Earth

Through our sustainability efforts and exciting employee campaigns, Akamai has demonstrated a strong commitment to protecting our beloved planet while building a more eco-friendly connected internet.

But we’re just getting started. As we work to achieve our sustainability goals for 2030, Akamai will continue to explore new initiatives that empower our employees to improve the environments in which we all work and live! #GreenWithAkamai.

Learn more

Visit the Akamai website to learn more about Akamai’s commitments to sustainability.

 



Courtney Hadden

Written by

Courtney Hadden

May 26, 2022

Courtney Hadden joined Akamai's Corporate Sustainability team in 2019, bringing her knowledge and expertise of Corporate Social Responsibility, community and employee engagement, and cause marketing to helping Akamai integrate our environmental commitments into our business. Courtney has worked with both non-profit organizations and corporations - such as Keurig Dr Pepper, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and The Walt Disney Company - and has unique experience in bringing together cause and value.