2019 Global Impact Report
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Clean and Renewable Energy

Our goal is to power our offices and data centers worldwide with 100 percent renewable electricity. In FY19, 100 percent of the electricity we used at our offices and data centers globally came from clean, renewable sources.

UNSDG Goal 7: Affordable Clean Energy

Our Progress

This means that all of the data centers that run our cloud applications—in both the U.S. and Europe—are using renewable electricity.

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Our commitment to clean energy has been recognized by the EPA through its Green Power Partnership program. Workday has achieved 100 Percent Green Power Purchaser status for the U.S. market, which we have maintained every year since 2008.

Scope 2 Market-Based Emissions

Offices and data centers globally

Scope 2 Market-Based Emissions Graph

Our Renewable Strategy

Our first priority is always energy efficiency. We aim to use as little energy as possible because the cleanest energy is the energy you never use.

On-Site Generation

Where feasible, we will prioritize on-site renewable energy generation, such as solar arrays at our offices. For example, our first new-construction office building has on-site solar providing up to one-third of the building’s electricity needs.

Supplier-Sourced Renewable Energy

We engage actively with our colocation data center providers to encourage renewable energy investments that are mutually beneficial. In FY19, Workday data center partners provided 15,117 MWhs of renewable energy to power operations in Virginia, Amsterdam, and Dublin. Workday will continue to encourage this type of supplier relationship through our advocacy as a member of BSR’s Future of Internet Power initiative.

Green Tariffs

Where appropriate, we take advantage of green tariff programs through energy suppliers for our offices. We review these tariff programs to ensure they meet the quality criteria in line with the GHG Protocol’s Scope 2 Guidance. While currently only a small portion of our global office electricity load, we hope to grow our use of these utility-supplied renewable energy options going forward.

Renewable Energy and Environmental Attribute Certificates

In locations where we can’t feasibly add on-site renewables, we purchase renewable energy from newer projects within the same market. Where possible, we aim to purchase from projects located on the same grid as our facilities. We prioritize high-quality certifications of verified renewables, such as Green-e RECs, EKOenergy GOs, and I-RECs, as well as renewables directly from local utilities that meet the Quality Criteria outlined in the GHG Protocol. We prioritize wind, solar, and small-scale hydro.

Long-Term Investments

Where feasible, we engage in strategic renewable energy investments, such as virtual power purchase agreements (VPPA), that add clean energy to regional grids where we have operations. For example, our first VPPA will power our four Virginia data centers with 100 percent renewable electricity.

Creating Pathways to Clean Energy

In 2018, we partnered with Bloomberg, Cox Enterprises, Gap, and Salesforce to sign the first-ever small buyer aggregate virtual power purchase agreement (VPPA), with 42.5 MW collectively acting as the anchor buyer for a large 100 MW off-site solar project. Once this project is operational in mid-2020, it will power all four of our data centers in Virginia with clean electricity.

Traditionally, only the largest corporate buyers have participated in utility-scale renewable energy power purchase agreements, and usually one large buyer acts as the anchor buyer for each deal. This has often prevented many smaller buyers from participating in the market for new renewable energy projects. Our group aims to create a blueprint for other smaller buyers to engage in similar aggregation projects, thereby catalyzing the development of new renewable energy projects that displace high-carbon electricity on the grid.

Corporate Renewable Energy
Aggregation Group Case Study

Corporate Renewable Energy Aggregation Group Case Study Video Video Play Icon

LevelTen Energy: Published on Jan. 17, 2019

Green From the Ground Up Photo

Green from the Ground Up

The new Workday headquarters building at our Workday campus in Pleasanton was built from a foundation of sustainable design. The building—our first new-construction office building—opened in 2019, and was constructed to achieve LEED Platinum, the highest level of LEED certification. A large 865 kW on-site solar array will provide up to one-third of the building’s daily electricity needs with clean energy.

An innovative grey water system will recycle on-site water, saving up to 720,000 gallons of potable water annually. Almost all of the plants used throughout the landscaping are drought-tolerant to minimize freshwater use.

We are encouraging alternative commuting as well. The building is adjacent to a local BART station, enabling employees to easily take the train to work. We are also adding more than 40 electric-vehicle charging stations that will be free for employees to use.

Our Energy Consumption

The primary form of energy that Workday purchases is electricity, which is consumed in our data centers and our offices worldwide. Below is a summary of our estimated electricity consumption by primary source for our reporting period.

94,889
Overall MWh
78,424
DC MWh
16,465
Office MWh

Regional electricity use

Regional Electricity Use Chart

Regional Data Center electricity use

(in MWh)

Regional Data Center Electricity Use Chart

Grid Mix Renewable Energy

Grid Mix Renewable Energy Chart FY19

Market-based Renewable Electricity Sources

Detailed emissions and energy data is provided here.