Less, Then Zero

Denver Zoo's Commitment to Wildlife Includes Protecting the Environment and Our Community

When it comes to resource consumption, we believe that less is more. That’s why we are committed to achieving Zero Waste by 2025, which means keeping 90 percent of our waste out of landfills. From the composting, recycling and repurposing we do all over campus to our new staff uniform shirts made from recycled water bottles, we’re working to reduce our impact on the environment, and take positive action to secure a safe and healthy planet for animals and humans. Read on below to learn about what we do to protect the environment and our community, and how your actions can make a difference for wild animals, both in our care and around the world.

What We Do at the Zoo

We have a rich and meaningful heritage as an organization committed to the conservation of animals across the globe and as a leader in animal care. But our commitment to species conservation extends to our commitment to protect the environment and our community through our sustainability program, which guides us towards our goal of operating in the most environmentally, socially and economically friendly manner, and ensures we are taking positive action to secure a safe and healthy planet for all living things. Our eight priority sustainability objectives include:

  1. Responsible sourcing of materials, food and services
  2. Waste diversion and promotion of a circular economy
  3. Water stewardship and conservation
  4. Reduction of fossil fuels through improving mobility, energy efficiency and supporting renewable energy sources
  5. Economic growth that supports positive social and environmental impacts
  6. Social leadership with the Zoo and surrounding communities
  7. Design for resilience to promote thriving environments in a changing climate
  8. Integrate ecosystem and biodiversity values into planning and development processes

Read more about the Zoo’s sustainability initiatives and how they support actions to mitigate the impact of climate change and other issues in an effort to protect wild animals and wild places.

Simple Ways YOU Can Make an Impact

Today, with at least a million species on the brink of extinction, our role as a Colorado wildlife conservation champion is more important than ever-and you, the members of our community, are absolutely critical to our success. There are many ways you can make a difference in your day-to-day lives, but none are as simple as reduce, reuse and recycle. We recently partnered up with Swire Coca-Cola, USA, our local Coca-Cola bottler and REPREVE to highlight how we’re keeping 90% of our waste out of landfills through composting, recycling and repurposing materials here on our 80-acre campus. Here’s a great video we recorded last year on how you can help!

*This video was recorded in 2019 before the current COVID-19 crisis hit Denver. Denver Zoo is enforcing all applicable city, county and state safety mandates.

Learn more about our Zero Waste initiative and other ways you can help wildlife by preserving their natural habitats and keep pollutants and toxics out of the environment at the Zoo and at home.