M&S aims to be fully net zero on emissions by 2040
Marks & Spencer has revised its Plan A sustainability programme as it looks to become a net zero Scope 3 business across its supply chain and products by 2040.
To meet the aim, the retailer has set out a detailed roadmap using science-based targets aligned to the UN ambition of limiting global warming to 1.5c.
If successful, M&S said it will become fully net zero ten years ahead of the government’s UK-wide strategy. However, this will require it to cut its carbon footprint by a third by 2025, from a 5.7million tonne 2017 baseline.
M&S chief executive Steve Rowe has now written to the retailer’s suppliers around the world and has also hosted a business-wide event to get its 70,000 strong staff team behind the plans.
Rowe said: “We launched Plan A 14 years ago, because we knew then there was no Plan B for our planet. We now face a climate emergency, and in resetting Plan A with a singular focus we can drive the delivery of net zero across our entire end-to-end supply chain. This won’t be easy. We need to transform how we make, move and sell our products to customers and fundamentally change the future shape of our business.”
M&S has also announced that it has launched a new incentive programme to reward its 12.5 million Sparks customers when they donate preloved clothes to its Shwopping partnership with Oxfam. It has also embarked on an new partnership with Reboot the Future, a not-for-profit organisation that works with young people and business leaders to make it easier for customers to discuss the challenges and opportunities relating to lower carbon lives.
In a further move, the retailer has identified 100 staff members who will act as ‘Carbon Champions’ across key roles in buying, sourcing and operations and is also developing a programme to grow carbon literacy amongst staff.
Rowe added: “We must act now to rapidly cut our footprint. To deliver this, we need our colleagues to better understand the carbon impact of our products and processes, we need to back our suppliers to innovate and adapt to the changing environment and we must work together to help customers enjoy lower carbon lives.”
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