How clean energy and recycled water are powering operations in India
At Amazon fulfillment centers in India, enhancements including solar arrays, advanced building energy management systems, and water conservation methods are advancing operations efficiency. These upgrades are an important part of Amazon’s goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions around the globe by saving energy and water.
Amazon’s operations team in India began installing solar arrays on its buildings in 2017 and have quickly scaled up since then. Eight facilities have a total of more than 8 megawatts of solar capacity installed. Spanning facilities in Delhi, Hyderabad, Bangalore, and Mumbai, these solar arrays support the annual energy needs related to fulfilling orders, reducing dependence on conventional sources of energy.
Amazon’s sortation center in Delhi, where associates sort customer orders by final destination and consolidate them onto trucks for faster delivery, was awarded a Gold rating by the Indian Green Building Council for its exemplary performance on energy and resource efficiency. Constructed with locally sourced materials and outfitted with high-efficiency plumbing and electrical equipment, the facility uses about 30% less energy and water than a typical building of its size.
Across facilities, an advanced energy management system provides building operators with a dashboard that enables them to optimize energy use and identify opportunities for further savings. Sensors make sure lighting and climate controls are only used when buildings are occupied.
Many of our fulfillment centers have the ability to collect and recycle water. We do this with rainwater collection tanks or recharge wells, which send water back into aquifers, and in-house sewage treatment plants, making it possible to reuse water for flushing and gardening.
Amazon India has successfully launched electric and commercial compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicles for deliveries. CNG vehicles, which can reduce greenhouse gas emissions compared with conventional fuels, are becoming increasingly common in India and are supported by an expanding network of fuel stations. Last year, close to 200 new CNG vehicles were rolled out across North India. These vehicles can reduce our carbon footprint by around 91 metric tons a month. Our electric fleet consists of nearly 150 vehicles.
In June 2019, Amazon India announced the expansion of packaging-free shipping to nine cities in India. Customer orders within this program are shipped in their original packaging without secondary or additional packaging. The program is available depending on the location of the customer, the distance the order has to travel, and the category of product ordered. The program is now set to expand to cover more regions, with a wider selection of products and a larger customer base.
Engaging with communities
Amazon expanding clean energy in India beyond its fulfillment centers, donating solar energy systems to 19 government schools and one mini planetarium in Bhiwandi, Maharashtra. This infrastructure supports the needs of children in schools and other members of the local communities in 24 villages, benefitting more than 2,500 people across the Haryana and Maharashtra provinces. In addition, we have supported lake cleanup by partnering locally to construct a sewage treatment plant in Bangalore. We are also planting more than 10,000 saplings around our fulfillment centers.