Last year we reported that because the government had changed the original Carbon Reduction Commitment system, we were reviewing which carbon reduction certification scheme to follow. We decided that the Carbon Trust was the best option and are pleased to report that we have achieved the Carbon Trust Standard in 2012. The Carbon Trust Standard is widely considered as the world’s leading mark of achievement for carbon footprint reduction. Achieving the prestigious Carbon Trust Standard means that we have been recognised by a third party for our efforts in reducing carbon emissions and for our commitment to further these reductions.
To achieve this, Arcadia had to:
- Provide an accurate footprint measurement including all required emission sources;
- Demonstrate an absolute reduction of footprint or equivalent relative efficiency improvement; and
- Demonstrate good carbon management including governance, accounting, reduction methods and targets.
ENERGY EFFICIENCY AND CO² EMISSIONS
This year we have again reached our target to reduce energy by 3%, achieving a 3.7% reduction. This saved 13.8 million Kilowatt-hours (kWh), which is enough to power more than 3,000 UK homes for an entire year. A kWh means one kilowatt (1,000 watts) of electricity produced or consumed for one hour. For example, a 100-watt light bulb left on for 10 hours consumes one kilowatt-hour of electricity. This resulted in a reduction in CO2 emissions of 3,054 tonnes, bringing our total saved since 2008 to over 19,000 tonnes through reduced electricity and gas consumption.
This was achieved through various initiatives targeting our electricity and gas consumption. For example, as part of our plan to use the most energy efficient lamps in our stores, we have replaced current lighting with 478 LED lamps in our store atriums. LEDs are 70-80% more energy efficient and these will save us 6386 kWh or 14.7 tonnes of CO2 per year (note that different commodities emit varying levels of CO2).
Next year we plan to replace lighting above the escalators at TOPSHOP Oxford Circus and convert all incandescent lamps to LEDs in BHS lighting departments. Another plan for next year is to convert heaters in some of our stores which currently use diesel oil into gas heaters which will use a third less energy to provide the same amount of heating. We have identified thirteen stores where we can do this.
Our initiative to introduce Energy Management Software in all our stores was realised this year and our next step is to interrogate the reports we are receiving from it, which will enable us to more accurately target reductions.
Meanwhile at our head offices, our IT team is playing its part in helping to reduce energy consumption. During the year we embarked on a programme to migrate computer users to a ‘thin client’ model, which uses around a quarter of the power of a desktop PC. We have installed 2,813 ‘thin clients’ during the year, saving approximately 895,000 kWh.
This approach provides greater efficiency and enhances remote support. In future we hope remote access will enable our teams to power down computers and peripheral devices from a remote location, even out of hours.
Upgrades of our servers have seen us replace 68 of them with up-to-date versions that use less electricity and produce less heat. This saves 17,300 kWh per year while the removal of 48 other servers is saving 100,000 kWh per year.
Over the last few years our retail estate has moved towards a ‘virtualisation’ or consolidation model, reducing 34 servers to six, with an annual power saving of 60,400 kWh.