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Energy Consumption

Reducing Energy Consumption

As a business, we use energy to light and heat our stores, distribution centres and offices. We have been working for many years to reduce the amount of energy we use, recognising opportunities to reduce our overall GHG emissions and operating costs for the business.

Our energy consumption in 2017/18 was 80,400 MWh, an increase of 7 per cent over the previous year, mainly as a result of a colder than average winter and a warmer than average summer which required greater heating and cooling respectively.

Our absolute combined total of Scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions decreased by 11 per cent to 21,326 tonnes CO2e.  This represents a reduction of 61 per cent against our long-term GHG reduction target to cut emissions from stores and distribution centres by 45 per cent per square foot by 2020 (against a 2006/07 baseline).

Over the last ten years, we have worked hard to establish a culture where energy efficiency is part of business as usual. The ownership for energy consumption sits with our store managers who have direct accountability for energy costs, therefore driving high levels of awareness and engagement among our employees. Store teams are aided by our central building management system which monitors energy consumption through a network of automated meter readers in all of our High Street stores and our larger Travel stores. These meters enable us to identify any discrepancies quickly and take appropriate corrective action.

This year, we completed phase 3 of a three-year project to roll-out energy efficiency best practice to stores.  The project has involved assessing energy performance of each store, benchmarking against expected consumption levels, and then altering energy settings for lighting, heating and air conditioning to minimise energy consumption, whilst maintaining a welcoming and comfortable environment for customers.

This year we have introduced additional air conditioning controls to 330 High Street stores and 384 Travel stores which switch off air-conditioning units when temperatures are within an optimal range. This project has provided an average reduction of 18 per cent in energy consumption across our stores.

Emissions from lighting make up a significant part of our carbon footprint and improving the efficiency of our lighting therefore remains a priority. This year, trials have continued to identify the best form of lighting to replace current LED lights which are now coming to the end of their life.

We have identified new equipment which provides sufficient lighting for wall displays and till points, reducing the need for more energy-intensive perimeter lighting in store. These lights are expected to deliver a further 10-15 per cent reduction in consumption, and roll-out will commence next year.

We estimate Scope 1 and 2 emissions from our international stores to be approximately 2,000 tonnes CO2e for this year, which is approximately 10% of the value for UK operations. Accurate calculation of our international footprint is difficult as many of our energy supplies are provided by landlords.