Climate Change

In 2009, Tesco became the first business globally to set the ambition to become zero carbon by 2050. Since then, we have set bold science-based targets for both our own operations and our supply chain, all aligned with the Paris Climate Agreement goal of limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees. We will reach net zero in our Group operations by 2035, and across our supply chain by 2050. 

As a business, we impact the climate in both our own operations and supply chain. We have completed a cradle-to-Tesco carbon footprint analysis for our UK operations to understand where the main sources of emissions come from and to help us develop reduction strategies.

To reach our operational net zero goal by 2035 on a 1.5 degree pathway, we have set ourselves a 2025 target of 60% absolute carbon reduction from our own operations compared to our 2015 baseline. To deliver this target, our climate strategy aims to improve and transform our own operations and work collaboratively with our partners and the wider industry to decarbonise our supply chain.

In 2020/21 we surpassed our 2020 milestone target for our own operations, with a 54% reduction in our Scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions across the Group compared to our 2015 baseline and a 10% reduction on 2019/20. Our 2020/21 Group Scope 1 and 2 emissions totalled 1,066,762 tCO2e.  

Our Scope 1 and 2 carbon footprint can be found here.

We measure and report our carbon emissions following the Greenhouse Gas Protocol. More information about how we calculate our carbon footprint, including reporting standards, definitions of Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions, current emission factors and our renewable electricity calculations can be found here.

Scope 1 emissions

Our Group Scope 1 emissions from heating, transport and refrigeration account for around 1 million tCO2e. We are taking action to transform our processes and operations towards a low carbon future, including installing aerofoil refrigeration technology and rolling out electric home-delivery vans in support of EV100.

Scope 2 emissions

100% of the electricity purchased across the Group is renewable and we are generating additional renewable energy with onsite solar panels and wind turbines. We have also signed the largest unsubsidised Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) portfolio in the UK, helping to transform the UK National Grid.

Scope 3 emissions

A large proportion of our overall footprint, our Scope 3 emissions, lies in our supply chain. We have recently updated our ambition to address these emissions, aligning to a 1.5 degree pathway and reaching net zero by 2050, The graph shows the estimated breakdown of our emissions from field to Tesco for our Group operations (2019/20 data). Unlike the emissions we control under Scopes 1 and 2, we need to rely on accelerated collaboration with suppliers and wider industry groups to reach our new scope 3 emission targets. In order to reach net zero, we will invest in carbon removal offsets to address any residual, unavoidable emissions which cannot be decarbonised through active efforts in our target year 2050. We will do this in line with the Science-Based Targets Initiative guidelines. We will shortly release our end-to-end roadmap to net zero, detailing the key actions that we will take to achieve our ambition.

Our total emissions footprint

Addressing climate change requires cross-industry action and supportive public policy. We engage with our peers as well as policy makers through our membership of various cross-industry forums, including the Aldersgate Group, Corporate Leaders Group and RE100. Through these and other groups, we share our climate change approach and learnings. This pre-competitive engagement offers us the opportunity to learn and inspire others to raise our collective ambitions in the transition to a low-carbon economy.

Climate and finance

In 2017, we also became signatories of the Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosure (TCFD). We are committed to assessing, mitigating and disclosing climate-related risks. Further information on this can be found in our Tesco PLC Annual Report and Financial Statements 2021.