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Our net zero
commitment

 

Net zero refers to the balance between the amount of greenhouse gases produced vs the amount removed from the atmosphere. We reach net zero when the amount we add is no more than the amount taken away.

 

The UK Government has a target to become net zero
by 2050. As a responsible business, we aim to achieve it
ahead of this: our near-term targets are to halve carbon
emissions before the end of 2030, before fully achieving
net zero across our entire value chain by 2040.

 

In June 2021, we signed up to the Science Based Targets initiative (‘SBTi’) Business Ambition for 1.5°C. By doing so, we are committed to achieving net zero before 2050 and to reducing emissions in line with the Paris Agreement goals. Our goal at Auto Trader is to achieve net zero earlier than this and we are committing to achieving net zero across our entire value chain (Scopes 1, 2 and 3) by 2040 and every year thereafter. Our near and long-term targets have been validated by the SBTi, with our near-term targets forming a core component of our net zero strategy.

We have committed to:

 

  • Reduce absolute Scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions by 50% before
    2030 from a 2020 base year
  • Reduce absolute Scope 3 GHG emissions by 46.2% over the
    same timeframe
  • Reduce absolute Scope 1, 2 and 3 GHG emissions 90% by 2040
    from a 2020 base year

How we’re taking action

To meet the SBTi’s definition of net zero, we need to reduce our emissions by at least 90% and then use carbon removal initiatives to neutralise any limited emissions that cannot yet be eliminated. It is therefore essential that we fully understand the source of our emissions.

 

We have built on the work to understand our full Scope 3 emissions across all entities within the Group, in addition to our Scope 1 and 2 emissions, providing us with a complete understanding of our carbon emissions throughout our value chain so that we can identify where we need to focus our efforts.

 

We have made further progress during the year to reduce our direct carbon footprint – our offices are predominantly on renewable energy tariffs and our data centres have been migrated to the cloud.

Addressing our Scope 3 emissions is a bigger challenge and something we have less control over. The make up of our carbon emissions is heavily weighted towards Scope 3, and within that purchased goods and services, use of sold product sand employee commuting are our major contributors. In order to meet our 1.5°C commitments and net zero ambition, we will undertake targeted actions. Within our Scope 3 emissions are emissions relating to the projected lifetime emissions of vehicles temporarily held on balance sheet by Autorama – we expect the volume of vehicles held on balance sheet to reduce over time.  Another key focus area will be on supplier engagement and working with our procurement team to understand the emissions of our suppliers so we can engage with them further on their sustainability plans. From a business travel perspective, we are reducing our fleet of vehicles and are aiming to switch any remaining business vehicles to EV or low emission. We are also encouraging rail travel over flying where possible for business travel.

 

The switch to Connected Working will result in less employee commuting and whilst we are still encouraging collaborative working, the advance in technology and communication tools should lead to less travel, be that commuting to the office or to visit a customer.  We have also successfully launched our employee salary sacrifice scheme to lease an electric vehicle.

The initiatives helping us
achieve our long-term targets

Our carbon transition plan is our framework for ensuring we realise
our aim of being net zero by 2040, whilst also supporting consumers
in making more sustainable vehicle choices, along the way.

Our carbon transition plan

 

We want to minimise our impact on the environment, thereby protecting our business from the impact of climate change.

 

Our strategy is to put the brakes on carbon, not only across our own operations
and supply chain, but also using our capabilities and voice to influence the
automotive industry to support others in the transition to a low carbon
economy and take urgent action to tackle climate change.

SOME OF THE ACTIONS WE'RE TAKING

Switch 100% of our fleet vehicles to be EV or low emission

Fully migrate all of our data centres to to the cloud

Reduce overall electricity use by 50% and procure 100% renewable energy for our remaining needs

Achieve a 50% reduction on our business travel emissions

Achieve a 50% reduction in commuting emissions

Require 50% of suppliers to have meaningful carbon reduction targets

Our total CO₂ emissions1

2023

2022

2020
(base year restated)


UK

Global

UK

Global

UK

Global


Scope 1

342

363

276

294

441

487

Scope 2 (location based)

297

310

368

385

510

542


Total (Scopes 1 and 2)

639

674

644

679

951

1,029


KwH (‘000s)

 

2,714

2,775

2,618

2,767

3,462

3,766

PG&S

19,537

23,562

50,149

Capital goods

498

794

477

Fuel & energy-related activities

133

196

244

Upstream transportation & distribution

72

115

210

Waste generated in operations

5

16

16

Business travel

365

63

1,141

Employee commuting & working from home

1,746

1,004

716

Upstream leased assets

129

106

33

Use of sold products

56,323

102,807

302,267

End of life treatment of sold products

31

50

191

Investments

26

27

29


Scope 3 (total)

78,865

128,740

355,473


Total (Scopes 1, 2 and 3)

79,540

129,419

356,502


Revenue 3

£510.4m

£491.1m

£458.9m

Tonnes of CO2 equivalent per FTE 2

68.5

107.9

334.1

Tonnes of CO2 equivalent per £million turnover 3

155.8

263.5

1,091.9


Scope 2 (market based)

3

91

N/A

% renewable

99%4

76%4

N/A


  1. Scopes 1, 2 & 3 are reported in tonnes of CO₂ equivalent.
  2. Based on average number of employees in the Group throughout the year (2023: 1,160, 2022: 1,199, 2020: 1,067). The average number of employees included Autorama FTEs for the period 1 April to 31 March for each period reported.
  3. This includes Autorama revenue for the period 1 April to 31 March for each period reported.
  4. Emissions from our data centres are included within our Scope 2 emissions. It has been confirmed by our provider that our data centres continue to be powered by 100% renewable – we have received a certificate covering the period to 31 December 2022 and the period 1 Jan to 31 Mar 2023 is currently being verified by a third party.

Also in this section

Supporting the industry

The government’s plans to reach net zero are ambitious and a lot need to happen in the coming years to ensure the infrastructure is in place to support the mass consumer adoption of EVs. We are also playing an active role supporting the industry with their own sustainability plans.

Read More

Supporting consumers

To support consumers in making the switch to more environmentally friendly vehicles we have increased the coverage and exposure we give electric vehicles (‘EVs’) across all our platforms. In particular, we have introduced an EV hub on our website where consumers can access articles and videos on electric vehicles, reviews and advice.

Read More

TCFD reporting

We support the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (‘TCFD’) and its recommendations and are committed to assessing the impacts of climate risks and opportunities across our operations and supply chains.

Read More

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