Sustainable Company Awards 2023

Energy efficiency initiative of the year, Americas and nature-based initiative of the year, Americas: Norfolk Southern

As part of its sustainability strategy and a commitment to reduce carbon emissions, US transportation company Norfolk Southern has developed a new energy-efficient corporate headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia.

Opened in 2021, the building achieved US Green Building Council (USGBC) LEED Gold certification in 2022 for its sustainable practices, including water conservation, energy efficiency, and indoor environmental quality.

Norfolk Southern reports it achieved a 16% reduction in energy use compared with the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) baseline, the industry standard for measuring building efficiency.

Along with undertaking measures to reduce in water use within the building, the facility also captures at least 75% of stormwater and reuses it for site landscaping, wastewater conveyance, and cooling tower water.

Also winning the award for Nature-based initiative of the year, Americas, in 2022, Norfolk Southern donated its third land conservation easement to the Lowcountry Land Trust (LLT) at Brosnan Forest, a 14,400 preserve in Dorchester, South Carolina.

The property is home to a diversity of plant and wildlife species including 90 groups of the endangered red-cockaded woodpecker, which Norfolk Southern says is the largest population on a single tract of privately owned property.

Additionally, over six miles of streams and 600 acres of wetlands have been restored, along with 2,000 acres of loblolly pine, which is one of the most threatened ecosystems in North America. 10,000 acres have also been enrolled into a forest carbon offset project.

Josh Raglin, chief sustainability officer at Norfolk Southern, commented: "At Norfolk Southern, sustainability means not just forging a better tomorrow, but actively building a better planet for future generations.

"Our headquarters represents innovation and Norfolk Southern's commitment to a greener future. Our ongoing restoration efforts at Brosnan Forest underscores our long-term dedication to environmental stewardship.

"From enhancing energy efficiency to implementing nature-based solutions, we're focused on creating a positive impact for our customers, communities, and the planet."

Norfolk Southern - Brosnan Forest