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2021 Sustainability Report: Climate Leadership

Over the past few weeks, we’ve taken a closer look at Republic Services’ Elements of Sustainability that anchor our 2030 sustainability goals: Safety, Talent, Climate Leadership and Communities. Today’s focus is Climate Leadership.

Through landfill and fleet innovation, recycling and circularity of key materials and renewable energy production, we are committed to environmentally responsible operations that increase efficiency, grow our business and help our customers meet their goals.

Our 2030 Climate Leadership goals and progress made over the past five years can be found on pages 39 and 40 of the 2021 Sustainability Report

Science Based Target

Reduce absolute Scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions 35% by 2030 (2017 baseline year)

Circular Economy

Increase recovery and circularity of key materials by 40% on a combined basis by 2030
(2017 baseline year)

Renewable Energy


Increase beneficial reuse of biogas by 50% by 2030
(2017 baseline year)

Here are a few stories that exemplify our commitment to Climate Leadership:

Climate Action at Our Landfills

At Republic’s operations, 87% of our landfill acreage is covered by gas collection systems. By maximizing biogas collection, we minimize gas escaping as fugitive emissions. Landfill emissions make up more than 85% of the Scope 1 and 2 emissions addressed by our Science Based Target goal. To manage these emissions, we need to be able to effectively measure them. The current challenge for landfill operators is in quantifying fugitive emissions, which is done through modeling, as opposed to direct measurement. This year, Republic Services moved to a more representative emissions modeling methodology known as SWICS (Solid Waste Industry for Climate Solutions). Learn more >

Heavy Equipment Innovation

Our efforts to increase efficiency and reduce emissions aren’t limited to our on-the-road fleet. Our heavy equipment fleet also provides opportunities for innovation. At our landfills, we’ve begun rolling out hybrid bulldozers that feature electric drives. The hybrid bulldozer has a traditional diesel engine, but the torque converter and transmission are replaced by a generator and electric motor, delivering meaningful fuel savings. To date, our electric-drive bulldozers are using an average of 19% less fuel than their fully diesel counterparts, and idle time has been reduced, resulting in lower emissions. Learn more >

Recycling for a More Sustainable World

Republic Services provides recycling solutions for millions of customers across the country, conserving precious natural resources, contributing to the circular economy and helping communities meet diversion goals. In 2021, our 71 recycling facilities processed 5 million tons of materials, returning valuable cardboard, paper, plastics, metals and glass to the marketplace for reuse while making steady progress toward our Circular Economy goal. And our recently announced Polymer Center will help enable greater plastics circularity. Learn more >

It’s stories like these that will help us reach our 2030 Sustainability Goals! Stay tuned next week as we zero in on the fourth and final Element of Sustainability: Communities