Wherever possible, we seek to minimise the impacts of transporting products – especially as our global reach as a retailer continues to grow.
We have continued to achieve a reduction in UK transport CO2 emissions this year, with a reduction of 5.6%. This is the eighth consecutive year that we have been able to deliver such a reduction.
The consolidation of click and collect orders alongside product already destined for our stores has helped further increase efficiencies this year. Click and collect orders have increased to occupy around 7% of the total volume on our fleet, compared to 5% last year.
Our entire vehicle fleet is now fully compliant with the Euro 5 emissions standards, further helping drive down CO2 emissions. Meanwhile, we have completed a trial to select the optimum design of new lorry body known as the ‘teardrop’, which brings enhanced aerodynamics and fuel efficiencies.
Encouraging our drivers to adopt a fuel-efficient and safety conscious driving style continues to pay off. This year we have seen our average miles per gallon rate increase by 8%, which is a combination of the new vehicles and driver training.
All our core drivers have taken part in two day’s training in defensive driving this year, adhering to the highly respected Smith System of Defensive Driving. We rolled this out to our team in the Republic of Ireland during the year.
We have streamlined our operations in Ireland into a single operation, introducing reduced height double deckers and consolidating our routes there. Previously we had 11 ‘outbases’, which have been reduced to seven showing that we have reviewed our pattern of delivery volume and altered our network to retain its efficiency.
Our UK-based initiatives are mirrored by the commitments made by our third party forwarders and carriers. The long-term partnerships we have forged in this area continue to reap benefits. By selecting best-in-class partners we can be sure that they share our commitments to reducing environmental impacts and CO2 emissions.
Meanwhile, our own investments in warehousing and stock allocation systems and the use of data to drive efficiencies is also changing the way we operate against a background of geo-political changes.
Our future plans will need to take into account the need to secure our supply chain in a changing world and how we respond to increased complexity.
When we consider the relative impacts of the different methods of moving our products, it is clear that moving goods by ship has the least impact in terms of emissions per kilometre travelled and our ocean freight partners continue to focus on reducing emissions.
REDUCING CLOTHES MILES
We are all familiar with the concept of food miles; the distance ingredients have travelled from farmer to fork. Now we are extending this concept to clothes miles, removing unnecessary shipping of goods between source and point of sale.
With the introduction of the Singaporean operation, we will see an average 70% reduction in the CO2 emissions.
The DC employs good practice in terms of energy efficient lighting and heating, replicating the position within our UK network, including a commitment to recycling. We have recruited a local team of experts to support the opening and for the DCs on-going management, reducing the need for UK employees to fly back and forth.