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Salesforce added a new section to its annual report highlighting its social activism

  • Salesforce added a new section to its annual report to stress its environmental, social, and governance activities.
  • Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff is known for his social activism and is one of most outspoken business leaders promoting work and pay equality.
Marc Benioff, CEO of SalesForce at the World Economic Forum in Davos Switzerland.
David A. Grogan | CNBC
Marc Benioff, CEO of SalesForce at the World Economic Forum in Davos Switzerland.

Salesforce has a new section in its annual report that's entirely dedicated to one of CEO Marc Benioff's biggest passions: social activism.

In its filing disclosed on Friday, Salesforce added a new section titled "Environmental, Social and Governance" that highlights the company's efforts in those areas.

"We believe the business of business is improving the state of the world for all of our stakeholders, including our stockholders, customers, employees, community, environment and society," it said.

Benioff is an outspoken critic of gender inequality at work and has been actively engaged in philanthropy through his non-profit arm, Salesforce.org. He's long promoted the 1 percent pledge, encouraging companies to dedicate 1 percent of their equity, time and profit to philanthropic causes.

Here's the full text of the section:

We believe the business of business is improving the state of the world for all of our stakeholders, including our stockholders, customers, employees, community, environment and society. We are committed to creating a sustainable, low-carbon future by delivering a carbon neutral cloud, operating as a net-zero greenhouse gas emissions company and by working to achieve our goal of 100 percent renewable energy for our global operations. In addition, we have spearheaded initiatives to drive equality in four key areas: equal rights, equal pay, equal education and equal opportunity. We also pioneered and have inspired other companies to adopt our 1-1-1 integrated philanthropy model, which leverages 1 percent of a company's equity, employee time and product to help improve communities around the world. Together with the Salesforce Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, and Salesforce.org, a nonprofit social enterprise, which are not included in our consolidated financial statements, we have given approximately $200 million to charitable organizations, logged more than 2.6 million employee volunteer hours around the world and provided more than 34,000 nonprofit and higher education organizations with the use of our service offerings for free or at a discount.

Below are some of the key highlights of our environmental, social and governance efforts:

*In fiscal 2018 we achieved net-zero greenhouse gas emissions and began delivering a carbon neutral cloud for all customers. In addition, we are committed to working toward 100 percent renewable energy for our global operations. To support this goal, in fiscal 2016, we signed two virtual power purchase agreements in West Virginia and Texas and, in fiscal 2018, we began sourcing 100 percent renewable energy for approximately 90 percent of our urban campus in San Francisco.

*As part of our ongoing work to promote equality in employee pay, opportunity and advancement, in fiscal 2017, we initiated our equal pay assessment and subsequently adjusted our pay practices to eliminate statistically significant gender-associated differences in pay, committing approximately $6 million to this end to date.

*In fiscal 2018, we announced that Salesforce Tower will feature the largest on-site water recycling system in a commercial high-rise building in the United States. The system is expected to reduce the building's water consumption and provide water recycling capabilities for all building tenants.

*We strive to integrate sustainability into our corporate events. For example, at Dreamforce 2017, we offset 100 percent of onsite event greenhouse gas emissions, as well as emissions from employee travel, through carbon credits purchased by us.

*We are active in and support organizations that move the United States and the world toward a more sustainable, low-carbon future. For example, we were a founding member of the Business Renewables Center, signed the Corporate Renewable Energy Buyers' Principles, helped to launch the Corporate Colocation and Cloud Buyers' Principles, disclose our annual carbon emissions to the Carbon Disclosure Project, and signed on to initiatives such as We Mean Business and the American Business Act on Climate.

*We have significantly increased the diversity of our Board over the past five years, including with respect to gender and race.

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