Retailers race ahead on green goals

RETAILERS have exceeded their environmental targets relating to waste, transport and energy, according to a new progress report.


The report, “A Better Retailing Climate”, shows how the sector is performing across a range of impacts.


In each case it has exceeded expectations, except for the one involving consumer engagement. In this case, retailers are still “on track”, to reduce the customer impact in the supply chain, across food waste, packaging and carrier bags.


The update, published by the British Retail Consortium (BRC), shows that those signing up to the commitments have beaten the waste target to send just 15% of waste to landfill by 2013 – last year 10% of waste was sent to landfill.


Delivery emissions have also been cut by 27% (the target was 15% by 2013), while buildings emissions were down 33% last year (against a target of 25% reductions by 2013). They had also committed to cutting emissions from refrigeration by half, but have reached 52%.


BRC environment policy adviser Alice Ellison said new targets would now be set.


Setting targets can, according to experts, drive innovation within businesses. However, there can sometimes be a temptation to set targets too low, so there is a need to constantly re-visit them.


  • Click here for a report from a recent Footprint Forum on sustainability reporting
  • Click here for how to excite staff with your targets
  • Reducing fleet emissions is covered in this month’s Footprint, out next week