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WHSmith’s transport delivery network is a long and complex one, covering well over a thousand stores across the length and breadth of the UK. The emissions from our fleet of lorries make up a significant part of our carbon footprint and we work hard to maximise efficiency wherever we can. Since 2007, we have reduced our CO2e emissions per pallet moved by 21 per cent.

We work with our transport providers to carry out regular and in-depth reviews of our transport operations to help us to optimise routing and delivery frequency. The recent addition of double deck trailers which are suitable for both High Street and Travel distribution centres has helping achieve greater efficiencies by creating a more integrated fleet across the Group. In addition, our transport management system provides real-time data to monitor driver behaviour. All full-time drivers are trained on defensive driving to reduce harsh braking and acceleration and reduce time spent with the engine idling, all contributing to reductions in overall fuel consumption for the fleet.

Where we can, we look for opportunities to collaborate with our suppliers and other companies to reduce emissions, for example, sharing vehicles with third parties in more sparsely-populated areas like North Wales. Another initiative is our Collection Service where we share space in our lorries and reduce traffic on the roads. If a supplier site is near to one of our transport routes, we collect products from their site, using spare capacity in our lorries and reducing the overall emissions associated with transporting our products.

We monitor the emissions associated with our business travel and report this as part of our GHG footprint above. Business travel is a small proportion of our overall carbon footprint, however we continue to look at ways to reduce our business travel emissions, using tools like video conferencing to reduce travel where possible. The expansion of our international business continues to result in more air travel by our teams, and this is reflected in our emissions data.