UK Retailers collaborate on Climate Change roadmap

Climate Change

Twenty retailers, including Marks and Spencer, Amazon, Missguided and Next have signed the British Retail Consortium’s roadmap to tackle the causes of climate change.

Retailers to tackle climate change ahead of Government target. This commitment is unique in that it includes the supply chain.

While many are concerned with the current coronavirus crisis, the
British Retail Consortium is stating that climate change remains as “one of the biggest threats to the planet” and the aim of this decarbonisation plan is to help retailers reduce their carbon emissions.

Climate Change

Twenty major retailers have today signed a declaration to develop a roadmap to tackle the causes of climate change.

The declaration notes that retailers “are coming together through the BRC to develop a ground-breaking decarbonisation plan that will guide the industry on the steps necessary to accelerate progress to a Net Zero UK, ahead of the Government’s 2050 target.”

Led by the BRC, the declaration commissions the creation of a roadmap that will provide retailers with the guidance and support necessary to decarbonise. Not only are they committed to cutting carbon emissions associated with their shops, distribution centres and logistics, but also, and most importantly, their supply chains and the products people are buying every day.

The research will be conducted by environmental experts and published in the form of a roadmap, along with a wider industry commitment, in the run up to COP26.

The BRC study says that by 2018 retailers had reduced their carbon emissions by 36%, well ahead of the original 2020 target of 25%. Supermarkets had reduced their greenhouse gas emissions from refrigeration by 55%, behind the 2020 target of 80%, and retailers had cut the proportion of waste that they send to landfill to 2%, where the 2020 target is 1%.

At the same time, retailers have reduced the amount of waste they produce, relative to shop floorspace, by 35% in 2018, the amount of water they use in stores by 19%, and have reduced carbon emissions from transport by 9%.

Helen Dickinson, chief executive of the BRC, said: “We are facing a climate emergency; it is ever more important for businesses to unite to tackle these global challenges. While we can see significant progress being made, we should not underestimate the scale of the challenge before us.

“The public want to know that the food they eat, the clothes they wear and the goods they buy are ethically made and responsibly sourced. Better Retail Better World brings together retailers to collaboratively play their part in creating a sustainable future.”

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