Responsibility

Our environment

We need to give back more to the planet than we take out and protect our business from the impact of climate change. Our strategy is to drive change across our operations and our supply chain, but also use our capabilities and voice to influence the automotive industry to support urgent action to tackle the climate crisis.

At Auto Trader, climate change is treated as a Board-level governance issue. Our newly formed Corporate Responsibility Committee evidences our commitment to drive improvements in our environmental and wider sustainability performance and ensure as a business we are making real progress with our environmental commitments.

Our environmental commitments can be split into two main components:

1. Net zero carbon emissions

We are at the start of our carbon net zero journey but we are committed to making progress. We recognise the seriousness of the climate crisis and we have signed up to the UN’s “Climate Neutral Now” initiative and also the Science Based Targets initiative (‘SBTi’), committing to set ambitious emission reduction targets. To help us accurately assess and develop strategies to reach carbon net zero, we have undertaken further work to evaluate our emissions more comprehensively and we will use the outcome of this work to inform our goal to set a net zero target with clear interim targets to measure our progress.

Total CO2 emissions1

  2021 2020 restated
  UK Global UK Global
Scope 1 34 45 195 241
Scope 2 277 291 392 424
Total (Scope 1 & 2) 311 336 587 665
 
KwH ('000s) 1,284 1,383 2,263 2,561
 
Scope 3 6,337 9,249
Total (Scopes 1, 2 & 3) 6,763 10,094
 
Revenue £262.8m £368.9m
Carbon intensity2 25.40 27.36

1. Scopes 1 and 2 are reported in tonnes of CO2 equivalent.
2. Absolute carbon emissions divided by revenue in millions.

Sustainability network

We have a well-established Sustainability Network comprised of passionate employees with a goal of making life at AutoTrader more sustainable. The Network is sponsored by our Commercial Director, Ian Plummer. The Network meets monthly and since its creation has built a wider network of over 200 people who all now share and implement sustainability ideas. They aim to increase awareness and encourage positive changes for individuals, as well as in our offices, in a bid to reduce our overall environmental impact. Since the group started, they have made positive changes such as: getting rid of single use plastic takeaway boxes in the Manchester canteen; producing branded reusable water and coffee cups for staff to reduce single use plastic cups; starting a plastic recycling bag system to reduce people getting bags when they buy their lunch; and introducing more environmentally friendly menu options in the canteen and for catered lunches for meetings, i.e. cooking with ingredients that have lower food miles, less meat, and more vegan options. We also use Fruitful Office to deliver fruit to our offices each week. The company plants one tree in Malawi for every order of fruit they receive. The trees help the organisation to mitigate the effects of global warming and deforestation, providing incomes to local communities.

Carbon literacy

We embarked on our carbon literacy training early in 2019. The training is structured to scale our impact from global to individual. One of the most effective parts of the course is making the connections between individuals and the impact of climate change. By the end of the training our Carbon Heroes (what we like to call our carbon literate colleagues) commit to a group commitment focused on making climate positive changes within our business. They also make personal commitments. These have ranged from changing energy suppliers, to commuting differently and reducing unnecessary travel. The groups have been working on meat free Mondays in our canteen, raising carbon footprint awareness and looking at our business travel policy. We have also planted a tree in the UK for every person who has completed the carbon literacy training.

18% of our business has now been through the training as at 31 March 2021. We also have a group of accredited Carbon Heroes who will become our next generation of facilitators to ensure that more of our business can experience the training. We want to reach every person in our business so it is vital we continue at pace to run sessions and aim to train 50% of our employees over the next financial year. As well as training our employees, we also plan to support Cooler Projects to create a carbon literacy toolkit with members of the automotive retail industry. The toolkit will be made available to all retailers and the charity will also offer training to accredit trainers from different retailer businesses.

Our offices

As an operator of an online marketplace, we have a relatively small carbon footprint. Our offices in London and Manchester are both highly graded by the BREEAM standard, which sets best practice standards for the environmental performance of buildings through design, specification, construction and operation. Our London office has an ‘outstanding’ rating, and our Manchester office an ‘excellent’ rating. All our offices (with the exception of one subsidiary office) use greener energy suppliers and as our employees return to the office, we will reinstate our operational initiatives to reduce our emissions: we have invested in video conferencing equipment in our London and Manchester offices, installing clickshare and polystudio in our offices to facilitate enhanced virtual meetings and collaborative online working; the use of passive infrared sensor lighting in the London office which is activated by movement; and switching off electrical items while the office is closed. As a technology business, one of our main components of waste generated in operations is the disposal of technology equipment such as laptops. We are now working with local programmes to repurpose laptops. We have greatly reduced the use of paper in our offices by reducing the number of printers and removing waste bins by desks. Where possible, we have replaced paper-based communications with online digital alternatives, including marketing reports and communications to employees, customers and shareholders. 95% of our invoices are delivered via e-billing and nearly all of our supplier invoices are received by email. We operate recycling systems in the offices established with local authorities and recycling schemes to encourage less waste.

Health and safety

We are committed to maintaining a safe workplace for our employees, customers and visitors and anyone affected by our business’s activities. It is therefore our policy that all of the Group’s facilities, products and services comply with applicable laws and regulations governing safety and quality. During the financial year 2021, there were no major injuries reported under the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations.

2. Supporting car buyers

Our success comes from a breadth of expertise and we want to combine that with our voice to influence the automotive industry to support urgent action to tackle the climate crisis. We can also use our data and partnerships to upskill our customers on alternatively fuelled vehicles (‘AFVs’) and help consumers make more informed choices to improve outcomes for the environment.

Promoting the advancement of new technologies and cleaner, more efficient fuel types is an important issue for us. That’s why we actively support the industry’s efforts to increase the consumer adoption of AFVs. We regularly meet with various Government departments, including HM Treasury and the Department for Transport’s Office for Low Emission Vehicles, to share our data and insights to help guide policy around the topic; we also support the industry trade bodies with their initiatives.

On our marketplace, we have taken steps to make it easier for car buyers to search for AFVs by improving search filters to include battery range, charge time and quick charge time which also appears on full page adverts. We have also introduced a new electric vehicle hub and regularly publish articles and videos on electric vehicles. Through our acquisition of KeeResources we now have data tools that enable manufacturers to promote their electric vehicles as a viable alternative to petrol and diesel engined cars by highlighting the total cost of ownership.

We are working with academic institutions to develop our understanding around electrification. Over the coming months we will support retailers through EV training and detailed pricing EV data as well as increasing our data sharing with Government and industry bodies to help ensure public policy is based on the latest insight.

Whilst the current market is far from predictable, it’s a safe bet that those buyers looking to make a purchase early next year are looking at your adverts on our marketplace right now. So what do you need to do to prepare for January?👇https://t.co/qwwUW9oYTs
EVs have proven again to be a bright spot in the latest @SMMT figures says @IanJPlummer. Fuel anxiety, greater environmental awareness, and the ‘cool factor’ are all helping to drive sales. https://t.co/Liuj74ZpOF
The record growth we’ve seen in used car prices in recent months shows no signs of slowing with November marking the 20th month of consecutive price growth. So where are prices currently at and what we can expect in the near future. Find out now 👉 https://t.co/LknZuxwuiT https://t.co/9JDMTOzn2s
Did you know that 42% of buyers in January this year did their research in December 2020? With this trend set to continue this year, @AndrewKorpela shares some advice on how to entice January's buyers to your adverts right now, setting you up for success next year. https://t.co/uuCOTMTCcG
It's no secret that we've seen the number of buyers considering an electric vehicle grow through 2021. But are buyers really interested in electric vehicles and how does this translate into buying intent? Find out in our The Road to 2030 Report👉https://t.co/ag3HZOMpFT https://t.co/2EZcsZKEHO
We recently marked our 1 year anniversary since we launched RPM, our online learning platform for retailers. In the last 12 months, we’ve found that retailers who’ve attended these masterclasses go on to sell their vehicles 10% quicker! Find out more - https://t.co/gXfP03yPAA https://t.co/3X02xWECId
Auto Trader Connect is now live to all retailers who requested access and who's partners have integrated with us. Auto Trader Connect puts the power of real-time data in your hands, enabling you to more efficiently manage your forecourt. Find out more - https://t.co/ygKfaAbven https://t.co/B8XGCfI4xD
We're still seeing retailers underpricing stock. With demand still high, there is a huge opportunity to make additional profit by pricing to market. https://t.co/AFIvnD8cOt
Of all the sales in January 2021, 42% were the result of searches made in December 2020. Make sure you're advertising all of your stock now so that you can kick of 2022 with a bang. https://t.co/jOjKQRTACD
We’ve seen 4 years of price growth in just 5 months and this shows no signs of slowing, with mid November seeing the average price of a used car rising to a staggering £19,852. https://t.co/8j0qtqT9yd

Auto Trader Group plc
Registered in England (Company number: 09439967)

Auto Trader Limited
Registered in England and Wales (Company number: 03909628)

Registered address:

1 Tony Wilson Place
Manchester
M15 4FN
VAT number: GB 614 8918 20

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