Into Greener Pastures

Walgreens is developing a test store to meet top environmental standards. 

To take the company’s green efforts in building construction to the next level, Walgreens is developing a test store in Mira Mesa, Calif., which will be the greenest Walgreens in the chain. This building will have some of the most proven energy-saving devices and systems including:
Skylights to reduce dependency on electricity by using natural light
â–     Energy-efficient lighting and air conditioning
â–     Special plumbing fixtures to reduce water consumption
â–     Reduced irrigation to save water usage
â–     Use of coatings, finishes and cleaning products that are friendly to the environment
â–     More recycling of construction waste
â–     Designated parking for energy-efficient cars
â–     Bike racks and posted information about bike routes
In addition to protecting the environment, Walgreens has been selected to participate in a pilot program for retailers with the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), a nonprofit group dedicated to green building practices. As the only drugstore chain among 70 retailers in the program, the company will help develop environmental standards for retail construction.

Being part of the pilot program will also help Walgreens reach its goal to achieve a high rating from the USGBC’s LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) system. As the nationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction and operation of green buildings, LEED certifies that building structures meet or exceed a high level of environmental design and performance.

Walgreens is hoping that its test store in Mira Mesa will get a good grade from LEED. What the company learns along the way will benefit their employees, customers and the environment.

This was written by Iris Iglarsh, manager of internal communications for Walgreens. It was excerpted from a larger article that appears in PR News Going Green: Case Studies in Outstanding Green Business Practices, Volume 1. To order a copy, visit

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