Environmental Sustainability

Integrating environmental sustainability

We recognize the importance of the environment in creating a healthy, sustainable future for all

Human health and the health of our environment are intertwined, connecting our mission to improve human health with our commitment to operate sustainably. We are committed to integrating environmental stewardship into the fabric of how we operate. Our elevated climate action goals highlight our commitment to net zero emissions across our operations and value chain by 2050.

On our path to net zero, we are incorporating sustainable solutions into our value chain and beyond. Our innovative technology is being used around the world for biodiversity conservation efforts, sustainable agricultural practices, and climate change studies to create a more sustainable future.

Our 2030* targets1

total giving

Net Zero
by 2050 (Scope 1, 2, 3)

causes supported

emission reduction
(Scope 1, 2, 3)

countries reached

Carbon neutral
in direct operations
(Scope 1, 2) by 20232

total giving

renewable electricity

causes supported

landfill diversion

countries reached

reduction in water intensity

total giving

Design for Environment
product development

causes supported

reduction in packaging

countries reached

$20 million
philanthropic support
for sustainability initiatives

  • * Except where noted otherwise
  • 1. 2019 baseline
  • 2. Beyond SBTi verified targets

We ensure that our efforts are aligned to the leading practices and organizations addressing environmental action

  • UN Global Compact Business Ambition
  • Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) 
  • We Mean Business Coalition
  • Data externally assured

Reducing our environmental footprint across our global facilities

Visual representation of San Diego i3 Campus. Initiatives are representative of global operations.

Visual representation of San Diego i3 Campus. Initiatives are representative of global operations.

Diverse, Inclusive, and Equitable Culture

Cultivating a sustainable value chain

In alignment with our net zero emissions goal, we consider it business-critical to work with suppliers and partners who share our commitment to a sustainable and equitable future. We engage on climate-related issues and hold them to the same high standards of business conduct that we set for ourselves.

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Illumina's Innovative Instruments

Developing sustainable products

Through the integration of Design for Environment (DfE), we apply environmental criteria to resource selection, design, energy use, data processing efficiency, and end-of-life management. A few of our key accomplishments include:

  • Enabled ambient shipment of sequencing flowcells for select platforms 
  • Replaced formamide with safer, plant-based chemistry in microarray 
  • Introduced cartridge disassembly tool to optimize recycling 
  • Created energy savings through Enancio and DRAGEN

Returnable. Reusable. Recyclable.
Our packaging is more sustainable than ever.

We lead with sustainable, responsible, and proactive business practices, which extend to how our products are developed and produced, and how we move materials through our value chain. Many Illumina products are temperature-sensitive, creating unique requirements in packaging, shipment, and storage. We recognize opportunities to reduce our packaging footprint and we have established targets to support our commitment. We continue to investigate and implement changes to increase circular economy engagement.

Returnable Insulated Containers

Returnable Insulated Containers

Insulated containers used for refrigerated and frozen in vitro diagnostic product (IVD) shipments can be returned to us for reuse.

  • Launched a container reuse program where returned containers are inspected, sterilized, reworked, and reused 
  • 70 lb of tertiary packaging waste diverted from landfill with each use and subsequent reuse.
Recyclable Insulated Containers

Recyclable Insulated Containers

A move to plant-based paper insulated containers results in a recyclable solution.

  • Fully curbside recyclable and compostable using standard paper-recycling streams
  • The insulated containers for frozen and refrigerated shipping are made with plant-based renewable materials, which requires less energy and diverts from landfill
Reusable Bulk Sustainable Solutions

Reusable Bulk Sustainable Solutions

New insulated pallet shippers for frozen and refrigerated products are validated for multiple uses and returnable for refurbishment and reuse.

  • Supplier return facilities inspect and refurbish for return shipment to Illumina
  • Pallets are modular and break down flat for easy return of multiple units via land or ocean
  • Supports internal movement network and customer bulk orders


SPG Sustainability Award 2022
Dow Jones Sustainability Indicies
ECOVADIS Gold Rating

Genomics for good in action

Sequencing to Save the Lemurs
A DNA Database for Plants, One Species at a Time
Illumina Announces the Thirteenth Agricultural Greater Good Grant Winner