“In writing down this plan, staff members see a path to help them hold leadership accountable. People are saying, ’Finally, we’re really going to do this.’”

Jesse Phillips-Kress

Director of Facilities
Seattle Aquarium

Seattle Aquarium’s Sustainability Master Plan, completed in October 2021, builds on their significant efforts made to date and positions the Aquarium as a sustainability leader in both the Pacific Northwest region and the Zoo and Aquarium industry. During our planning process, the Aquarium formed an exciting vision to become regenerative — producing more environmental benefits than harm. 

We kicked off this project by establishing baselines and benchmarking against peer organizations. We gathered information from a diverse process team of staff and leadership, who formed the plan’s overall vision and chose five broad goal areas: energy and emissions, water and effluents, waste, materials, and engagement. Focus teams then formed more specific targets and strategies for each goal area. More than 25 percent of Aquarium employees were involved at some point throughout the process.

The completed Sustainability Master Plan, set to be made public in 2022, lays out 160 actionable strategies to help the Aquarium meet its goals. In developing these strategies, we ensured they supported the Aquarium’s diversity, equity, and inclusion work, aligned with the Aquarium’s conservation mission and values, and did not negatively impact animal health and well-being.