General FAQs


What is the goal of Project Gigaton?

Project Gigaton is an initiative announced in April 2017 which aims to inspire suppliers to reduce upstream and downstream (beyond-the-shelf) greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from the global value chain. Specifically, the goal of Project Gigaton is to avoid one billon metric tons, or one Gigaton, of CO2 emissions from global value chains by 2030.

One Gigaton is equal to the emissions from 211 million average passenger vehicles in a year, according to the Environmental Protection Agency’s greenhouse gas equivalency calculator.

Project Gigaton is the Scope 3 component of Walmart’s science-based emission reduction target, which was announced in November 2016. As part of this science-based target, Walmart has also set a goal to reduce Scope 1 and 2 absolute emissions in our own operations by 18% by 2025 (compared to 2015 levels).

What are the science-based targets Walmart has set?

Walmart was the first retailer with an emissions-reduction goal approved by the Science Based Target Initiative. According to the Science Based Target Initiative, targets adopted by companies to reduce GHG emissions are considered “science-based” if they are in line with the level of decarbonization required to keep global temperature increase below 2 degrees Celsius compared to pre-industrial temperatures, as described in the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC AR5).

As part of its goal, Walmart is working to reduce scope 1 and 2 absolute emissions in our own operations 18% by 2025 (compared to 2015 levels). We plan to do that through various means, including adopting new energy efficiency measures, using lower carbon energy sources, and by doubling our use of renewable energy. That will mean that 50% of our operations are powered by renewable sources. Project Gigaton, which aims to avoid one billon metric tons of CO2 emissions from global value chains by 2030, is the Scope 3 component of Walmart’s science-based emission target.

How is Walmart encouraging suppliers to participate?

At Walmart, we believe that committing to emission reductions is both beneficial to the environment and good for business. We believe that the integration of sustainable practices into operations and sourcing can have the benefits of competitive advantage, technological innovation, brand loyalty, and increased employee engagement. For this reason, we encourage every Walmart supplier to join Project Gigaton, showcase the impact they are having, and take advantage of recognition opportunities. For those suppliers doing good work, we’re sharing their stories and case studies within Walmart, the supplier community, and publicly.

Suppliers that commit to SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time Limited) goals and report emissions reductions during the annual reporting period will be eligible for recognition as Sparking Change or Giga-Guru suppliers – criteria can be found here.

Why did Walmart select the pillars of Energy, Agriculture, Waste, Packaging Forests and Product Use?

Walmart identified Energy, Agriculture, Waste, Packaging, Forests, and Product Use as the focus for Project Gigaton because each of these “pillars” represents meaningful opportunities to avoid upstream and downstream greenhouse gas emissions across numerous product categories. Each of these six pillars is specific enough to focus work and report results, while also being broad enough to involve the wide variety of products and suppliers that make up the Walmart assortment.

If suppliers prefer to set a broad emissions goal that captures emissions reduction work across many areas, e.g. a science-based target or intensity emissions reduction goal, they may do so by entering this goal as “Other” during the Project Gigaton sign up process. Suppliers are invited to set a goal toward one or more Project Gigaton pillars and report achievements annually. Please see Reporting FAQs (below) for more information.

Is the goal of Project Gigaton to inspire absolute, sequestered or avoided emissions?

Project-level avoided, sequestered, and absolute emissions reductions self-reported by suppliers to Project Gigaton will be counted toward Project Gigaton equally. At an enterprise level, these submissions constitute avoided emissions for Walmart.

Walmart recognizes the important difference between avoided, sequestered, and absolute emissions reductions. We’re committed to inspiring broad action across many industries and issues, which we hope will inspire changes that contribute to both avoided, sequestered, and absolute emissions reductions. Additional definitions and information can be found in the Project Gigaton Accounting Methodology.

How to Join FAQs


How do I participate in Project Gigaton?

There are just three steps to participate in Project Gigaton:

  1. Set a Goal: work within your organization to set an emissions reduction goal; all goals should be SMART goals: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time Limited.
  2. Sign Up: Visit the Walmart Sustainability Hub, where you can join us, set up a Project Gigaton Account and manage your company’s Project Gigaton participation.
  3. Bank Your Impact: Report your impact each year and get recognition for your progress; this year, results should be reported through your Project Gigaton account between October 1 – November 12, 2018. More information on the annual survey questions can be found in each of the Project Gigaton pillar pages: Energy, Agriculture, Waste, Packaging, Forests, and Product Use.

You’ll need a Retail Link account to sign up and create a Project Gigaton account; if you don’t have one, click here for more instructions. If you signed up or reported to Project Gigaton prior to May 2018, and weren’t prompted to create a Project Gigaton account, we’ve created an account for you and pre-loaded it with the information you provided. To access it, see instructions here.

Your Project Gigaton account will be your one-stop-shop to manage your company's participation in Project Gigaton – it’s where you can update your goals, add and remove users, provide permissions to be recognized, link up your CDP disclosure, and report and view your company's Project Gigaton results.

Do I have to join Project Gigaton to participate and report progress?

Yes, you must join Project Gigaton to participate, report progress, and be eligible for recognition opportunities. You only need to join once to be included in all future years of the program.

To join Project Gigaton, simply click the Join Us button found throughout this website and complete the sign up process.

Should I set a goal for my own operations, or supply chain?

Suppliers can join Project Gigaton by setting a goal for their own operations and/or value chain, i.e. scope 1, 2, or 3 emissions.

What if I don’t know how to set a goal?

If you’re not sure how to get started or set a goal, please use this website as a resource or seek a sustainability professional to help guide you. Specific goals lead to substantially better returns; so, when setting a new goal, make sure it’s SMART. SMART goals are:

  • Specific – what’s your impact area?
  • Measurable – can you measure progress?
  • Achievable – is this a reasonable goal?
  • Relevant – does this fit into your strategy?
  • Time limited – by when?

This website offers “toolkits” of resources and information for each of the Project Gigaton pillars (Energy, Agriculture, Waste, Packaging, Forests, and Product Use) to help suppliers get started or advance their existing work.

What are the expectations after I sign up?

After you Join Us, Walmart will review your goals, assess your eligibility for recognition, and may reach out for additional information. Suppliers are responsible for ensuring all the information in their Project Gigaton account (goals, contacts, etc) remains current. Your company’s Project Gigaton status is made available to various teams at Walmart, including the buying and sourcing teams responsible for your product.

Each year, you’ll be asked to report your emissions reductions toward Project Gigaton – participation in this annual process impacts your recognition eligibility. This year, results should be reported through your Project Gigaton account between October 1 – November 12, 2018. More information on the annual survey questions can be found in each of the Project Gigaton pillar pages: Energy, Agriculture, Waste, Packaging, Forests, and Product Use.

Is there a cost to participate?

There is no cost to participate.

Can I join Project Gigaton with an existing target or goal?

Yes, absolutely! You can Join Us by submitting an existing goal, or by setting a new one. However, we encourage all goals to be SMART goals:

  • Specific – what’s your impact area?
  • Measurable – can you measure progress?
  • Achievable – is this a reasonable goal?
  • Relevant – does this fit into your strategy?
  • Time limited – by when?

The timeline for your goal does not need to match the Project Gigaton program timeline. However when reporting results each year, the earliest reporting period acceptable for inclusion is from July 1, 2015 through June 30, 2016. The latest reporting period acceptable for inclusion is July 1, 2030 through June 30, 2031. For example, if your company’s goal and emissions reduction activities started in 2010, only the emissions reductions achieved after July 1, 2015 can be reported toward Project Gigaton.

Can I change my goals in the future?

Yes. You own your goals and may change or update them as your business requires it. To update your goals, update the Goals tab in your Project Gigaton account page with your new target. Re-assessment of your eligibility for recognition may take up to two weeks.

Will my participation be made public?

Supplier participation and reporting to Project Gigaton will not be made public without supplier permission. To set these permissions, update the Profile Sharing Consent tab in your Project Gigaton account. We encourage all companies to make their participation and goals public in order to be more transparent and drive accountability.

How big of a commitment do I need to make?

The goal you set is up to you – we welcome goals big, small, old and new, so please identify the right target for your organization. Consider selecting goals that are ambitious or “stretch” goals. We hope to see all suppliers build towards setting a science-based target.

Whatever type of goal you choose to pursue, we encourage all companies to make their goals SMART. SMART goals are:

  • Specific – what’s your impact area?
  • Measurable – can you measure progress?
  • Achievable – is this a reasonable goal?
  • Relevant – does this fit into your strategy?
  • Time limited – by when?
Can I participate if I’m not a direct supplier to Walmart?

To avoid double counting, only direct “tier 1” suppliers of Walmart products and services, including suppliers to all global markets and banners (e.g. Asda, Sam’s Club), are eligible to join and report to Project Gigaton. Other value chain members are encouraged to work through their eligible business partners to “get credit” for their emissions reduction activities as part of Project Gigaton.

Do I need to join all the pillars, or just one?

The pillars (Energy, Agriculture, Waste, Packaging, Forests, and Product Use) are a menu of options for you to choose from – suppliers are invited to join one or multiple Project Gigaton pillars. If suppliers prefer to set a broad emissions reduction goal that captures emissions reduction efforts across many pillars, e.g. a science-based target or emissions intensity goal, they may do so by entering this goal as “Other” during the Project Gigaton sign up process.

What if my emissions activities don’t fit into the Energy, Agriculture, Waste, Packaging, Forests or Product Use pillars?

While we did our best to identify pillars that would allow Project Gigaton to capture emission reduction contributions across the wide variety of products and suppliers, we recognize that your company may be undertaking activities that don’t fit within the Energy, Agriculture, Waste, Packaging, Forests, and Product Use pillars as they’re scoped today.

If this is the case, you can still Join Us by entering this goal as “Other” during the Project Gigaton sign up process. You will need to calculate and report your aggregate emission avoidance each year using a credible methodology.

Are there any organizations you recommend I work with for help?

There is no requirement to work with an outside organization as part of Project Gigaton, however we encourage you to find an organization or business to help you if you would like additional support. In our case, we have relied on organizations such as World Wildlife Fund, Environmental Defense Fund, The Nature Conservancy, The Sustainability Consortium, CDP, Sustainable Packaging Coalition and Conservation International; additional organizations are named throughout the pillar toolkits found on this website.

Reporting FAQs


When, what, and how will I report?

Reporting will be conducted annually each fall. The annual reporting process for Project Gigaton launches Oct. 1, 2018 and closes Nov. 12, 2018 and is conducted through your Project Gigaton account in the Reporting tab.

Collecting information and completing this survey takes time, so in advance of the survey launch, we encourage you to make sure you can access your Project Gigaton account and familiarize yourself with the specific data points you’ll be asked to report. More information on the data you’ll be asked to report and methodology for converting this information into emissions can be found underneath the What will you report each year and how will it be converted to GHGs? section of each “toolkit” found on this website (Setting a target, Energy, Agriculture, Waste, Packaging, Forests, and Product Use) and in the Project Gigaton Accounting Methodology.

How do I select my reporting dates? Can I report retrospectively?

During a given reporting cycle, suppliers may report up to two years of data, split into separate 12-month submissions. Over the course of Project Gigaton, no supplier should submit more than 15 years’ worth of data.

Suppliers specify the starting and ending dates of the reporting period they choose to use; this may be based on the calendar year, the company’s fiscal year, or another convenient 12-month period. It is best practice to report the latest or most recent 12-month period for which it has data available, although there is no requirement that data submitted correspond to the year it was submitted (for example, suppliers can report 2017 data to the 2018 Project Gigaton reporting cycle). Each subsequent year’s data should use the same reporting period dates to avoid gaps or overlap with the prior year’s submissions.

The earliest reporting period acceptable for inclusion is from July 1, 2015 through June 30, 2016. For suppliers reporting to the 2019 reporting cycle, the earliest possible reporting period will shift to July 1, 2016 through June 30, 2017; each ‘earliest possible’ reporting period will shift accordingly for each future reporting cycle thereafter. This is intended to encourage continuous progress and delivery of more current results to Project Gigaton. The latest reporting period acceptable for inclusion is July 1, 2030 through June 30, 2031.

If you’re a new supplier to Walmart, only emissions reductions from the year your company becomes a supplier to Walmart can be reported to Project Gigaton.

After reporting, can I change the data I’ve submitted?

Any amendments to reported data will be handled on a case-by-case basis. To start this process, please notify Walmart by emailing corpsu@wal-mart.com.

How will the data I report be converted to greenhouse gas emissions?

More information on the data you’ll be asked to report and methodology for converting this information into emissions can be found underneath the What will you report each year and how will it be converted to GHGs? section of each “toolkit” found on this website (Setting a target, Energy, Agriculture, Waste, Packaging, Forests, and Product Use) and in the Project Gigaton Accounting Methodology.

What if I already report to CDP?

If your company already reports to the CDP Climate Change Questionnaire each year, your disclosure can be leveraged to report emissions reductions to Project Gigaton. To report to Project Gigaton using your CDP disclosure, you must grant permission through your company’s Project Gigaton account (tab: Profile Sharing Consent) for Walmart to use your CDP data and the following CC4.3b fields must be completed in your CDP disclosure:

  • Activity type and description
  • Estimated annual metric tons CO2e savings
  • Scope
  • Estimated lifetime of the initiative
  • Percent of CO2e savings dedicated toward Project Gigaton (assumed to be 100% unless otherwise noted)

Please use the CDP Climate Change Reporting Guidance to properly respond to question CC4.3b. If you haven’t received a request to disclose from CDP but would like to volunteer to do so, please contact walmart@cdp-sc.com and CDP will help you get started.

So long as you’ve signed up for Project Gigaton, granted permission for Walmart to use your CDP disclosure, and completed the necessary fields in CDP, you can report to Project Gigaton using your CDP Climate Change Questionnaire.

Do I report only emissions reductions related to my business with Walmart?

Suppliers choose which emissions reductions to report toward Project Gigaton. Suppliers may choose to report all, or a portion, of the total emissions reductions achieved by their company globally. Supplier reductions not connected to products sold at Walmart can be counted toward Project Gigaton. Reductions achieved through Walmart-led programs or independent supplier activities can be counted toward Project Gigaton. Project Gigaton does not require reported emissions to be attributed to Walmart in order to count towards the gigaton target.

How is this Project Gigaton different from the Sustainability Index?

The Sustainability Index is a scorecard developed by The Sustainability Consortium (TSC) which is designed to collect information on consumer product life cycles — from raw materials, sourcing, manufacturing and transporting, to selling, customer use and end of life. The results are then analyzed so Walmart can use them to benchmark supplier performance, identify risks, and focus suppliers on continuous improvement on sustainability “hot spots” across the entire product lifecycle.

Project Gigaton focuses only on measuring greenhouse gas emission reductions achieved by suppliers in the reporting year. In many cases, suppliers taking action to improve on certain Sustainability Index “hot spots” will achieve emissions reductions which can then be reported to Project Gigaton. Project Gigaton is focused on elevating supplier goals and progress specifically tied to climate and GHG emissions reductions.

Will the data I submit to Project Gigaton be audited?

Walmart will not be auditing supplier results, so it is up to you to ensure accuracy. Suppliers are encouraged to verify emissions management prior to submission. We expect suppliers to submit accurate information, and encourage you to make your results public.