Tesco Ireland: Reducing our carbon footprint

Company Description:
Tesco is Ireland’s leading food retailer serving over 1 million customers weekly from 107 stores throughout Ireland and employing over 13,000 people. We are committed to delivering low prices, value, choice, range and service. In addition, we are also proud supporters of the Irish food industry and last year alone Tesco bought €65 million worth of Irish food and drink exports, ranking Tesco ahead of France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands and the USA.

Business Issue:
Tackling climate change will require extraordinary commitment from us all. Our carbon footprint shows that emissions from electricity use accounts for our biggest impact. While we are investing significantly in energy efficiency in our stores, we also felt it appropriate to develop an energy awareness programme to help drive behavioural change throughout the business.

Solution Applied:

  • Energy awareness programme developed to provide the process and procedures for managing energy in our stores, depots and head office.
  • Specialist monitoring and targeting system installed in all stores so energy consumption can be proactively managed.
  • Daily usage recorded and transmitted centrally into easily digested reports.
  • Compliance checks completed and logged weekly followed up by internal audits.
  • Performance measured through two specific energy management key performance indicators (KPI’s).
  • Energy specialists appointed centrally to support stores in delivering targets while providing technical support as required.
  • Energy champions appointed to all stores and trained to monitor usage and maintain best practice.
  • Energy champions offer crucial link with staff by identifying simple, positive steps that can be taken to save energy in store.
  • Programme supported by strong visual communication package – posters, stickers and videos encouraging behavioural change.
  • All staff attended series of energy awareness briefings to outline the impact and the measures that can be taken at work and in the home.
  • Energy awareness programme now part of induction of all new starters.

Company Benefits:
“While we’ve set ourselves a tough target in reducing our carbon impact which will result in a significant benefit to our environment, the financial benefits of reducing our consumption in light of escalating costs can’t be underestimated,” Michael McNerney, Energy Manager, Tesco Ireland.

Stakeholder Benefits:
According to the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, Eamon Ryan, TD, “I must commend Tesco Ireland for the effective action taken on its path to becoming energy efficient…it is to be congratulated for its foresight and I have no doubt that many more businesses will follow suit”.

Key accountability for managing consumption must lie at source, which in our case is every store manager.

Investing in energy efficient technology and behavioural training of staff has dual benefits – our environment and financial savings.

Departments Involved:
Property, stores and distribution centres.

Solution Champion:
Michael McNerney, Energy Manager Tesco Ireland, michael.mcnerney@tesco.ie