Corporate Responsibility

Environmental change is a risk to our customers, our business and our communities, so we seek to limit the impact our activities may have on environmental change through green buildings, waste and emission reductions as well as employee engagement in conservation and recycling.

Climate change has a direct impact on our business, since it can increase the volatility, frequency and unpredictability of natural catastrophes like severe storms, droughts and other extreme weather events.

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Climate change also can have a human cost, causing suffering for our customers, employees and the communities where we live and work. In 2013–2014, we developed a new climate change statement defining our management approach to one of society’s most pressing global challenges. Our sustainability leadership team, along with other company leaders, engaged in an extensive and careful review of this statement, which can be read below.

Approach to Managing Climate Risk



As an insurer, employer, investor, property owner, and responsible corporate citizen, Allstate is committed to dedicating resources to help mitigate and manage the risks associated with climate change. This document outlines this commitment and includes Allstate’s progress towards mitigating its climate change–related impact, and its goals to further reduce that impact.

The following climate change statement was developed by Allstate’s cross-functional Sustainability Leadership Committee, composed of various internal stakeholders including leaders from the following departments: Sourcing and Procurement, Corporate Relations, Law and Regulation, Corporate Administration and Real Estate, Product Operations, Enterprise Risk and Return, Protection Finance, Investments, and Claims.

Managing our energy use allows us to run our facilities more efficiently while also lessening the potential impact of our activities on the environment.

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This year, we made important progress in managing energy use and emissions, including:

  • Achieving energy-use reductions: We met our long-term goal of a 20 percent reduction in energy use from the baseline established in 2007. Given the great strides we have made over the past six years, we are reviewing this goal in 2015 and are considering new long-term energy-use targets.
  • Continuing to increase the efficiency of our data centers: In 2014, we added more energy-efficient components to two key elements of our Hudson, Ohio, data center’s systems: three new variable speed chillers, which keep the servers cool, and an uninterruptable power system (UPS), which provides power in emergencies. As a result of these improvements, as well as more efficient use of technology and real estate, the Hudson facility reduced its power usage by 22 percent, from nearly 30 million kilowatt hours in 2010 to 23 million in 2014.
  • Engaging employees: Energy efficiency comes from thousands of small decisions made by employees—whether to turn on the office lights for a weekend work session versus working productively from home, or even unplugging printers and monitors at work when they’re not in use. We are currently exploring ways to more effectively educate and communicate with employees about energy use, including enlisting the Allstate Ambassador program to help us engage employees in all of our offices and facilities.

Energy Reduction

We met our long-term goal of a 20 percent reduction in energy use from the baseline established in 2007.

Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Emission Reductions

Measuring energy use accurately is our first step toward managing it effectively. Information about our power use currently comes from a variety of vendors in a multitude of formats, making it difficult to aggregate information and compare efficiencies at various locations.

Over the next several years, we will standardize our energy-use measurement processes so we can establish a baseline across facilities, analyze usage and identify areas for future improvement. We are also incorporating building automation technology into our facilities as we upgrade systems, which will enable us to have a clearer picture of power use for heating, cooling, lighting and business operations.

By making our buildings greener, we discover new ways to reduce our operational costs and the potential impact our activities may have on the environment.

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When we build new facilities, we seek, wherever possible, to embed sustainability considerations into the design and construction processes, from incorporating recycled and renewable resource materials to using low-flow plumbing fixtures and ENERGY STAR®–rated appliances. The highlights of our green building programs in 2013–2014 included:

LEED® Green Building Certification:

Allstate currently has three buildings in our portfolio that are LEED-certified:

  • The Rochelle Data Center in Illinois achieved LEED Gold certification in February 2010 from the U.S. Green Building Council® (USGBC).
  • The Chubbuck, Idaho, call center is LEED-certified to the Silver level for Core & Shell as of February 2012 and LEED-certified for Commercial Interiors certification as of January 2013.
  • F-Building, at Allstate’s home office, achieved LEED’s Certification level following the renovation of three of its floors.

Green Building Highlights 2014

Renewable Energy Credits: Ten percent of the energy used at our home office campus in Northbrook, Illinois, was purchased using renewable energy credits (RECs); buying these credits supports the growth and development of renewable power sources. We will make the same 10 percent commitment in 2015.

Lighting Efficiency: In 2014, we reduced our lighting costs at Allstate’s headquarters by replacing old three-lamp fixtures with more energy-efficient two-lamp fixtures.

Upon its completion in 2015, we will apply for LEED certification for a 45,000-square-foot leased call center in Draper, Utah.

Electric-Car Charging Stations: To accommodate and encourage the use of environmentally friendly electric cars, we have 11 electric charging stations—three each at Willow Road and South Plaza in Northbrook; three in Ogden, Utah; and two in Jacksonville, Florida. In 2015, we are adding two more stations to our Hudson, Ohio data center.

Managing Growth: Consolidation has been a big part of our sustainable real estate strategy in previous years. However, with the economic upturn and Allstate’s growth across business lines, we have started to hire more people, proudly growing our organization and expanding our footprint in a strategic way. In addition, in 2014, we integrated Esurance’s 400,000 square feet of leased space into Allstate’s real estate portfolio for the first time since the 2011 acquisition. Our strategy going forward will be to seek greater efficiencies in the leased and owned facilities we operate, while supporting our businesses with the space they need to serve our customers and communities.

Building Sustainability into Our Leased Portfolio

In 2014, we began work on a new leased call center in Draper, Utah, where we occupy 45,000 square feet of space. The building was already LEED-certified for its shell, so it has been relatively easy and cost-efficient to meet LEED specifications as we complete the interior. We will apply for the building’s interior space to become LEED-certified in 2015. In addition, the building allows us to consolidate a new agent call center with a claims operation and legal office formerly housed in Salt Lake City, reducing our overall footprint and achieving efficiencies with shared break rooms, bathrooms and other facilities.

We are committed to recycling and conservation programs to minimize the potential impact that our activities may have on the environment.

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As a service business, Allstate is not an extensive user of water, nor do we generate significant amounts of waste. However, we are committed to recycling and conservation programs to minimize the potential impact that our activities may have on the environment. In 2014, our home office recycled 9,190 pounds of PET (or polyethylene terephthalate) plastic bottles, 4,775 pounds of aluminum cans and more than 6.8 million pounds of paper. In 2015, we are implementing an extensive, enterprise-wide recycling program with our enterprise shred vendor so we can better track and manage our recycling efforts.

Water Stations

Plastic water bottles are a major source of solid waste. At least 2 million tons of these disposable containers currently clog America’s landfills.1 In addition, manufacturing and transporting bottled water consumes significant amounts of fossil fuel, increasing the level of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the atmosphere. At Allstate, our employees and guests can reduce their consumption of bottled water by using the filtered-water stations located throughout our facilities.

We began 2014 with 168 water stations and added four new ones during the year in our home office buildings. We also installed 28 new water stations in our Hudson, Ohio, and Jacksonville, Florida, facilities.

1 The Water Project.

In 2014, our filtered-water stations dispensed nearly 23 million ounces of water—enough to fill 17 swimming pools. More important, that same amount of water would fill 1,360,028 typical water bottles. If we laid these bottles end-to-end, the chain would stretch more than 170 miles.

Going Paperless

We make it easy for Allstate customers to go green through a series of options for electronically receiving bills, policy statements and communications. In 2014, we expanded three initiatives—eSignature, ePolicy and eBill—to cut our frequency of mailings by 3.2 percent from 2013 levels, equivalent to 22.2 million fewer sheets of paper or 200 fewer metric tons of paper waste.

More customers signed up for these services in 2014 as well: Use of our online customer self-service hub, “My Account,” rose from 36 percent to 44 percent of customers; eBill usage increased from 22 percent to 28 percent; and eSignature adoption nearly doubled from 6 percent to just under 12 percent.

Not all paper can be eliminated, so we’re also working to make sure we recycle as much of it as possible. Our secure shred program reduces environmental impact while also protecting customers’ confidential information. Through the program, we ask employees and agency owners to put all paper waste into special recycling bins. The content is first shredded, then recycled. We are currently working to establish goals and reporting measures to track the success of the secure shred program and should have data on it in next year’s report.

Upgrading Allstate’s Recycling Program

Allstate employees already recycle at many office locations, but in 2015 we are developing a comprehensive program to recycle aluminum cans, as well as glass and plastic bottles, at many of our locations. An integrated, enterprise-wide program will allow us to track results, identify opportunities for improved participation and engage Allstaters in improving the environment. We are currently interviewing potential partners, and working on communications and education to engage employees in this effort.

Food waste is the single largest source of solid waste in the country, and, as it decomposes, it generates significant quantities of methane, a potent GHG.

Reducing Employee Cafeteria Waste

Nearly 35 million tons of food waste went into American landfills in 2012, the most recent year of reporting by the EPA.2 In our hometown of Chicago, organic materials (which are mostly food) make up nearly a third (29 percent) of the waste collected by the Department of Streets and Sanitation.3  Food waste is the single largest source of solid waste in the country, and, as it decomposes, it generates significant quantities of methane, a potent GHG.

While Allstate’s cafeterias are extremely small contributors to the worldwide food-waste problem, we are piloting a program to reduce our impact in 2015. At our home office campus, we will be using a pulper/dehydrator to grind and remove water from kitchen waste, cutting the volume of kitchen waste by 95 percent in the process. The 5 percent that remains will be a fine, textured material that can be used as fill in landscaping.

2 Municipal Solid Waste Generation, Recycling, and Disposal in the United States: Facts and Figures for 2012, EPA, 2012.
3 Compost
Recycling: Preliminary
Paper, Chicago
Coalition, 2011.