At Extra Space Storage, our responsibility as a publicly traded Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) extends far beyond the ownership and management of real estate assets. We are accountable for establishing a lasting company that is committed to the preservation of our environment and its resources. In the past year, we continued to reduce our carbon footprint by installing solar panels and high-efficiency fixtures, reducing water consumption, and diverting more garbage to recycling centers rather than landfills, among other measures.
In celebration of Earth Day, here are some of the highlights and recognition we’ve received for our environmental initiatives.
Since 2018, we have been the highest-rated U.S. self storage REIT by the Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark (GRESB). In their annual Real Estate Assessment, GRESB looks at how companies integrate environmental, social, and governance (ESG) issues into their management practices. Based on these ESG initiatives, over 1,500 participating real estate companies are awarded an overall GREBS score and a GREBS-star rating between 1 and 5. Extra Space Storage is proud to have received a 3-star rating in 2021 and anticipates similar results in 2022. Additionally, we scored an “A” rating in Public Disclosure—evaluating our level of transparency with ESG practices—and improved our overall GRESB score by 14 points.
The National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts (NAREIT) works in close collaboration with GRESB. Each year, they honor companies in eight property sectors that have demonstrated superior and lasting sustainability practices with the Leader in the Light award. Nareit has presented Leader in the Light since 2005, with Extra Space Storage being the first self storage company to be recognized in 2020. In January 2021, Nareit and Extra Space storage celebrated this significant achievement by ringing the NYSE closing bell together.
Consumption and Emissions
Our sustainability efforts are backed by a long-standing record of action. We’ve performed lighting retrofits or LED installations at hundreds of Extra Space Storage stores resulting in significant kilowatt-hour electricity savings and offsetting greenhouse gas emissions. We keep conservative indoor temperatures and make regular updates to energy-efficient HVAC and other systems. While self storage properties are already low water consumers and low producers of wastewater compared to other sectors. We still seek to reduce our usage through efficient plumbing devices and irrigation systems. We are mindful of the landscaping at our various facilities, seeking to xeriscape when permitted by local municipalities, or to install landscaping that does not require significant watering. Finally, we are committed to using recycled materials in the products we sell in our stores— from cardboard boxes to packing supplies, we seek to use products containing recycled materials—and continue to find ways to reduce our carbon footprint.
We’ve been executing an effective solar program for over a decade and remain committed to making progress in this area. Our solar energy efforts lessen our reliance on the grid while aiming for a high financial return, demonstrating how sustainability can be achieved by balancing what is good for the environment, the community, and our shareholders’ interests.
We are proud to be recognized for our sustainability efforts by thought leaders like GRESB and Nareit, and remain focused on becoming better and better each year. Happy Earth Day!
Learn more about our sustainability efforts in our 2021 Annual Report.