// Wilko announces ambition to reach Net Zero by 2040
// It is part of the UK high street’s commitment to the BRC Climate Action Roadmap
// The roadmap outlines steps to decarbonise the retail industry and its supply chains
Wilko has pledged to reach net zero carbon by 2040 by becoming the latest signatory of the BRC Climate Action Roadmap, which aims to tackle UK retail’s role in the climate crisis.
The home and gardening retailer said it would activate measures over the next two decades to put decarbonisation at the core of all business decisions, to reduce carbon emissions, increase its use of sustainably sourced products, and to help its customers and team members to live low carbon lifestyles.
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Wilko is one of 63 retail signatories on the Climate Action Roadmap, and follows its pledge last June to help reduce plastic pollution by signing up to The UK Plastics Pact.
Each retailer that has committed to the BRC’s roadmap believes that, with government support, the retail industry can decarbonise stores by 2030, deliveries by 2035 and products by 2040.
The roadmap sets out five areas of action: putting decarbonisation at the core of all business decision making; reducing carbon emissions from shops and distribution centres; ; moving to net zero logistics operations; increasing sustainably sourced products; and helping customers and employees to live low carbon lifestyles.
Wilko said it has already started to make headway on its pledge across its 415 shops nationwide and via its distribution and office buildings, along with alterations to its extensive range of own brand products.
- Introducing a new LED lighting system in stores in 2017. Since then it has rolled it out across distribution and support centres giving an energy saving result of up to 60 per cent
- Upgrading the electric motors that run its air conditioning across its entire store network by the end of 2020 – saving a potential of 918 tonnes of CO2 and 2.97 gigawatt hours over the lifecycle of the motors
- Signing up to the UK Plastic Pact in 2020, removing 800 tonnes of single use plastic from product packaging since
- Removing glitter and single-use plastics from boxed Christmas cards, wrapping paper, gift bags, crackers and gift sets – making most of Wilko’s range recyclable
- Eliminating all glitter from the fancy-dress costumes it sells each Halloween and removing the equivalent of 20,000 plastic bottles and 520,000 sheets of paper from the packaging used for its Halloween costume and decoration ranges
- Becoming the first retailer to remove plastic from all of its own brand wipes – including beauty, cleaning, household, pet and more
“We’re a family owned business that’s been freeing up hard-working families to be the best they can be for over 90 years,” Wilko chief executive Jerome Saint-Marc said.
“One of our core values is to show we care and, we understand the importance of climate change to our customers who expect us to take action on their behalf and make better choices about caring for the environment.
“That’s why we’ve been working with the BRC for a number of years on their Better Retail Better World programme and, why we’re delighted to now add our support to their Climate Change Roadmap, which echoes our future environmental goals, working together to make a big difference.”