As we approach the UN’s next climate change summit COP26, hosted by the UK in Glasgow later this year, it’s clear that climate change and the absolute need to reduce carbon emissions is a top priority for any business. At Marshalls, we know we have a role to play in helping the UK achieve its ambitious carbon reduction targets and we’re fully committed to doing everything we can to get there – and that includes looking at our energy supply.
Our sustainability strategy is to Create Better Futures for everyone; socially, environmentally and economically. We’ve been at this for over 20 years, and since 2008 we’ve managed to reduce our total carbon footprint by 50%. More recently in 2020, we had our carbon emissions reduction targets approved by the Science Based Targets initiative – this is an organisation set up by the UN and WWF to set the standard for carbon reductions. We’ve also switched our electricity to a certified green energy supplier, and it now supplies all parts of our business which means that all our electricity now comes from renewable sources.
For some years, we’ve investigated different types of energy for our business operations, including wind and solar. For our sites, wind energy is still in the feasibility study phase but our solar energy project is now well underway. In 2015, we installed solar panels at our Sandy site in Bedfordshire, which generates over 200,000kWh per year on average.
Moving forward, all Marshalls’ manufacturing sites have had solar energy assessments in order to evaluate potential for solar panel installation and we now have a target of undertaking one major solar panel project every year. We have also been engaging with local councils in the UK to look into potential solar energy projects and our new Dual Block Plant project in St Ives has been designed to be compatible with solar energy supply with the aim of using solar power for all FLT and electric car charging points.
For more information on our approach to sustainability, visit www.marshalls.co.uk/sustainability.