With 45 manufacturing sites and over 1100 retail sites in the UK & Ireland we recognise the importance of reducing our impact on the environment. Manufacturing energy use is key to our performance in this area. As is the impact of our buildings, our vehicle and lorry fleet and the energy we purchase.
In 2016 we made a conscious decision to change our energy suppliers and are now purchasing renewable energy for our UK operations. This move has reduced our CO2 emissions by 92.5%; down from 180,330 tonnes of CO2 to 13,560 tonnes.
However, as our business grows we are still using more energy to meet the growing demands of producing more materials, which in-turn has increased our energy usage and our emissions. Our challenge now is to ensure that we continue to grow our business to the benefit of our customers and employees; whilst at the same time reduce our emissions and decouple our growth from our energy and emissions.
Our goal is to reduce the emissions we produce by 20% by 2025.
We are proud to say that 100% of our large energy usage sites have achieved ISO 14001 Environmental Management System certification and 78.7% of our energy is covered by ISO 50001 certification. Being ISO accredited is important to us as the management system helps us combine best practices, energy monitoring and awareness - shaping our approach towards our energy use. We are also part of the Triad programme*.
We are also focused on ensuring that the products we manufacture help our customers reduce their own carbon footprints, and the significant carbon footprint of buildings, which accounts for 40% of the UK’s total carbon emissions.
The energy savings generated by our insulation products are 90 times greater than the emissions used to manufacture them, and it only takes three months on average for these products to offset these emissions.
Our 2016 CSR report recognises the areas in which we are progressing, but is also open about the areas where we need to focus more. With continued hard work and the advice we receive from an external advisory panel we remain hopeful that we will achieve our 2025 goal.
In 2017 we will be publishing more details on how we are progressing and our actions to meet our target, as we know our stakeholders are interested in this important area.
To read our CSR review, or to find out more about our CSR policies, please visit www.saint-gobain.co.uk/csr/
*The Triad Programme - large businesses/energy users are asked to reduce their energy consumption at periods of peak demand on the grid.