Simon Property Group, one of the largest retail real estate investment trusts, is encouraging its customers to return purchased items in-store rather than online to reduce carbon emissions.
Simon owns Johnson Creek Premium Outlets and Pleasant Prairie Premium Outlets in Wisconsin.
According to Simon's independent studies, carbon emission can be reduced by up to 40 percent when purchases are returned in-store versus by mail.
“Where you shop matters,” said Aharon Kestenbaum, head of sustainability, Simon. “And where you return also matters. Online returns are a growing problem that adversely and materially impacts the environment. Returning online purchases to the store offers consumers and retailers the opportunity to lessen that impact.”
As the pandemic continues online returns have increased. Simon notes online returns doubled in 2020 to $102 billion with apparel returns as high as 40 percent of items ordered online.
You can find more about Simon's sustainability initiatives here.