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Environmental compliance

We maintain compliance with applicable environmental laws, regulations, and other obligations.

Environmental policy

Cisco’s Corporate Environmental Policy outlines our high-level framework, driving continuous improvement of Cisco’s environmental performance. We use our annual Purpose Report and ESG Reporting Hub to detail our environmental policies. Our Environmental Management System (EMS) drives continual improvement in our business processes, products, and services to address our environmental impacts.

Corporate Environmental Policy

Our approach to protecting the environment is to set long-term goals to address the environmentally significant impacts of our products and business operations. Our most material environmental issues are energy and greenhouse gases (GHGs), managing product end-of-life, and implementing circular economy principles to conserve the Earth’s resources.

Cisco is committed to:

  1. Reduce impact: Cisco addresses negative environmental impacts from our operations, extended operations (supply chain) including distribution and logistics, and throughout the lifecycle of our products.
  2. Expand policy coverage: We will continue efforts to implement our environmental policies consistently across all Cisco operations and legal entities worldwide, all extended operations, and all products.
  3. Govern with ISO 14001: Governance of our environment-related efforts using our externally certified International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 14001 EMS.
  4. Maintain compliance: We maintain compliance with applicable environmental laws, regulations, and other obligations. When our own requirements are more stringent, we operate to these higher standards. We expect this same compliance of our key business partners and contractors.
  5. Take a broad approach: The scope of our EMS includes energy management and GHG emissions, product and packaging materials, water, biodiversity and land use, solid waste from operations, liquid effluents, and non-GHG emissions.
  6. Collaborate: We will work with suppliers, industry organizations, customers, employees, advocacy groups, academia, and other stakeholders to address environmental impact.
  7. Prioritize actions: We will identify key environmental topics using our ESG materiality assessment,1 conducted every two years.
  8. Evaluate and improve: We will continue to evaluate and review annually, using our EMS, the impact of our business on the environment, set goals to reduce these impacts, and measure our progress; and report performance in our annual Purpose Report and on our ESG Reporting Hub.
  9. Drive progress with goals: We will set unambiguous, public environmental goals to drive improvement and demonstrate accountability.

For more information about Cisco’s EMS, please contact

1 ESG materiality, as referred to in this website and in our ESG reporting, and our ESG materiality assessment process are different from “materiality” in the context of Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) disclosure obligations. Issues deemed material for purposes of our ESG reporting and for purposes of determining our ESG strategy may not be considered material for SEC reporting purposes, nor does inclusion of information in our ESG reporting indicate that the topic or information is material to Cisco’s business or operating results.

ISO 14001 EMS

Cisco’s ISO 14001 EMS is a global framework that touches functions and aspects across our ESG efforts. It relies on individual accountability, management responsibility, measurement of key performance indicators, and a continuous improvement philosophy to support business and environment goals and drive environmental performance. Our EMS is certified by TUV SUD America Inc. to the international EMS standard ISO 14001:2015.

We select Cisco sites for ISO 14001 certification based on those with the greatest potential for impact. Criteria include:

  • Facility size and lab area
  • Building headcount capacity or persons housed
  • Primary facility function
  • Business or customer needs

We use our EMS to identify environmental impacts and risks at Cisco sites and set relevant local and corporate-level objectives. Following site selection, we calculate a baseline environmental score to measure performance over time, measuring impacts across corporate functional areas; associated products, activities, or services at that location; and the environmental impacts associated with the generation or use of materials, impacts on air and water, and depletion of natural resources.

Cisco’s corporate sustainability activities are included in our certified ISO 14001 EMS and are part of the internal and external audits we perform annually. Internal EMS audits assess how our environmental processes and goals have been implemented and how well we are improving our EMS at our certified sites. As part of our ISO 14001 certification, we also participate in annual audits conducted by a third-party registrar. These audits identify areas for improvement and measure performance, while also providing external validation and verification of our EMS processes and programs.

Cisco assesses existing sites and acquisitions against the certification criteria and incorporates them into the ISO 14001 certification roadmap to support business and customer needs. As of the end of fiscal 2023, 63 percent of Cisco’s real estate (by square footage) was ISO 14001 certified. The table below shows Cisco’s global ISO 14001-certified site locations by region.

Cisco ISO 14001-certified site locations
Americas (AMER) Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) Asia Pacific, Japan, China, and India (APJCI)
  • Atlanta, Georgia
  • Austin, Texas
  • Boxborough, Massachusetts
  • Fulton, Maryland
  • Herndon, Virginia
  • Kanata, Canada
  • New York, New York
  • Research Triangle Park, North Carolina
  • Richardson, Texas
  • San Jose, California
  • Toronto, Canada
Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA):
  • Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • Bedfont Lakes, United Kingdom
  • Brussels, Belgium
  • Dusseldorf, Germany
  • Galway, Ireland
  • Krakow, Poland
  • Netanya, Israel
  • Paris, France
  • Reading, United Kingdom
  • Vimercate, Italy
Asia Pacific, Japan, China, and India (APJCI):
  • Bangalore, India
  • Beijing, China
  • Hong Kong, China
  • North Sydney, Australia
  • Pune, India
  • Shanghai, China
  • Singapore, Singapore
  • St Leonards, Australia
  • Tokyo, Japan
Cisco Environment Management System ISO 14001 certification
KPI FY19 FY20 FY21 FY22 FY23
KPI: Number of Cisco sites with ISO 14001 certification FY19: 32 FY20: 31 FY21: 30 FY22: 30 FY23: 30

Cisco's Global eScrap Management Team

Cisco’s Global eScrap Management Aspect Team (SMAT) is responsible for setting objectives for ISO 14001 Cisco offices and aligning on objectives identified by Cisco's EMS and Environmental Aspect Management process. They drive Cisco’s environmental performance, pollution prevention, and continual improvement.

Compliance with environmental regulations

Cisco complies with applicable environmental regulations and laws in the countries in which we operate.

Read about Cisco’s position regarding relevant product-related materials, recycling, battery & packaging legislation under Materials (e.g., Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS), Registration, Evaluation, Authorization, and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH)) and Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE), Battery & Packaging Compliance.

For information regarding the homologation status for given Cisco products in certain countries, visit our self-service PAS (Product Approvals Status) database.

In the past four fiscal years, Cisco paid one environmental fine of approximately US$34,000 in fiscal 2020.