As the largest energy services and solutions company in the UK and Ireland, we have an opportunity as well as a responsibility, to reshape our future to one that’s fairer and more sustainable.
That’s why we’ve developed our Climate Transition Plan to set out our plans to become a net zero business by 2045 and help our customers be net zero by 2050, while ensuring a fair and affordable transition for all.
And it’s also why our strategy and purpose are rooted in providing energy services and solutions that’ll help our customers live sustainably, simply and affordably. In support of this, our People & Planet Plan sets out our net zero targets, and how we’ll continue to develop the diverse and inclusive team that’ll help us get there. Our Climate Transition Plan is the next step, explaining how we intend to achieve these goals.
“Getting to net zero is complex and like everyone else, we don’t have all the answers yet. But what I do know, is that our future as a business depends on delivering net zero and just as we’ve done for the last 200 years, we’ll continue to evolve and seize the opportunities the energy transition offers to ensure a fair and affordable transition for everyone.”
Chris O’Shea, Group Chief Executive
Being a net zero business by 2045
As we aim to inspire our customers to live more sustainably, we need to lead by example. This has led us to cut our carbon emissions by more than 70% over the last decade as we’ve moved our core activities away from large scale centralised power generation alongside gas and oil exploration and production, to focus on providing services and solutions that help our customers live sustainably, simply and affordably. And we’re now progressing towards being a net zero business by 2045 at the latest, with an interim target of reducing our total carbon emissions by 40% by 2034 from 2019.
As part of our plan, we aim to:
- build a zero emission fleet in the UK by 2025. This is five years earlier than the UK’s ban on internal combustion engines and builds off the nearly three million miles we’ve already driven in our electric vehicle (EV) fleet;
- cut emissions across our properties in the UK by a further 50% by 2030 with low carbon and energy efficiency technologies and tariffs, as well as taking a ‘FlexiFirst’ approach to working which allows colleagues to combine the flexibility and convenience of working at home with time in the office to connect and collaborate; and
- redirect investment into low carbon and transition assets that drive the transition forward - from our aspiration to secure up to 800MW of solar, peaking generation and battery storage by 2025, to repurposing energy assets we’ve relied on for decades and giving them a clean lease of life. This includes opportunities to convert our Rough gas storage facility to store hydrogen, as well as transforming our Whitegate power station to utilise hydrogen or carbon capture and storage.
Helping our customers to be net zero by 2050
With around 90% of our carbon emissions coming from our customers, the biggest thing we can do to tackle climate change is to help them use energy more sustainably. We already help our customers reduce their emissions which in 2022 was equivalent to the annual emissions of around 600,000 homes. And we’ll build on this by focusing on helping our customers be net zero by 2050 at the latest, with an interim target of delivering a 28% reduction in the carbon intensity of customer energy use by 2030 from 2019 levels.
Towards this, we aim to:
- roll out energy efficiency and energy management solutions that give greater comfort and control over energy. For example, we plan to deliver over 6 million more smart meters by 2025 and nearly double the number of Hive heating customers so that no one has to heat an empty home or room;
- deliver low carbon technologies that empower customers to make the shift from fossil fuels. And by 2025, we hope to deliver 100,000 EV charge points a year to make EVs the new normal, install up to 20,000 heat pumps a year as an alternative to gas boilers, and grow a substantial position in the UK battery optimisation market so that more of our customers can generate and manage their own renewable energy; and
- supply cleaner energy by aiming to provide zero carbon electricity and investing up to £100 million in renewable assets each year by 2025.
Ensuring a fair and affordable transition
EV charge points we plan to deliver each year by 2025
aiming to provide zero carbon electricity and investing up to £100 million in renewable assets each year by 2025
For the transition to net zero to be a success, we can’t just focus on carbon emissions. Governments, regulators and energy companies amongst others, must prioritise people alongside planet, and work to deliver a smooth transition that doesn’t leave anyone behind.
So we’ll continue to champion the needs of our customers to ensure a fair and affordable transition by helping them navigate the changing energy landscape with our innovative services and solutions, whilst continuing to be there for those who need extra support with their energy bills. We’ll also work with colleagues to grow a greener and more inclusive team by generating thousands of high-quality green collar jobs with a focus on diversity and inclusion. And we’ll support communities by backing sustainable initiatives as well as collaborate with partners to ensure a low carbon supply chain.
The journey ahead
While our net zero targets are based on science corresponding to a well-below 2°C pathway initially and 1.5°C by mid-century, we’ll continue to review them and seek opportunities to accelerate action wherever we can.
But accelerating action and getting to net zero won’t be quick or easy. And it’ll need everyone to do their bit. We’ll need decisive action from government to establish key policies and support mechanisms. We’ll also need customers to actively be part of the energy transition, and we’ll need to stay in step with technology to provide services and solutions that do just that.
The world is at a turning point. So together let's take action to seize the opportunities and overcome some of the challenges, and ultimately build a more inclusive and sustainable future for everyone.
We look forward to reporting progress against our climate targets and transition plan in annual reporting. We’ll also do a full review of our transition plan every three years and share it for shareholder advisory vote at the AGM.
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"It’s our role to take everyone on the journey towards Net Zero living"