Standard Life Aberdeen has accelerated its climate change commitments to achieve a 50% reduction (from the 2018 baseline) in scope 1, 2 and 3 operational emissions by 2025, an ambitious start towards Net Zero by 2050. This includes business travel and working from home emissions.
Our approach to managing our operational emissions is to reduce as much as we can and then offset what remains. A dramatic change in the nature of our operational carbon footprint, which we have been monitoring since 2006, occurred during the pandemic as emissions from our offices and business travel reduced. Travel which made up 65% of our footprint in 2019 only represented 14% of emissions in 2020, by building on the technology we have become accustomed to, we can continue to reduce business travel from the pre-pandemic levels.
Additionally, although we continue to roll out efficiency measures in our largest offices, in 2020 we went from having under 1% of our employees working from home to over 95%. This meant that home working became the largest source of emissions, accounting for 55% of our carbon footprint.
Working from home (WFH) or hybrid working is likely to be a lasting feature of working life, therefore we are developing a strategy to tackle home-working emissions. We calculate our WFH emissions based on accepted, robust and audited models but we feel it’s imperative we go further than best practice. We have partnered with Pawprint, an eco-tech company to help employees measure, monitor and reduce their carbon footprint via a set of tailored questions and challenges. We are a pioneer of the Pawprint for Business app which allows us to gather anonymous data to remove some of the assumptions in our current WFH emissions analysis. By informing people of their biggest carbon impacts the app then challenges them to make either large or small changes to address this.
As we look to new ways of living and working, another initiative we are now offering to UK employees is electric car leasing which is an environmentally friendly and cost effective way to travel. Providing greener and more sustainable choices for employees as part of the flexible benefits package is an important step to helping everyone have the opportunity to make sustainable changes.
Stephen Bird, Chief Executive Officer, commented:
“ESG is not a hygiene factor and it is not a bolt on activity, we all have a responsibility to constantly analyse our own progress and ambition. We also know that commitments need to be more than words. We need to be held to account on both our plans and progress – through clear and specific targets, and transparent and credible reporting. As a business we are carbon neutral, through offsetting 110% of our operational carbon footprint and by accelerating our climate change commitments we hope to demonstrate our constructive contribution towards decarbonisation.”
We are also not just looking at our own operational emissions we are also engaging with our supply chain and asking our key suppliers by spend to also adopt their own Net Zero plans by 2025.
Andrea Ward 07876 178696
Iain Dey (Edelman Smithfield) 07976 295906
Latika Shah (Edelman Smithfield) 07950 671948
Notes to editors
About Standard Life Aberdeen
Standard Life Aberdeen plc is a leading global investment company. We have offices in over 50 locations worldwide and employ around 6,000 people.
In April 2021, we announced our intention to rebrand to abrdn. The new name will be used for our publicly listed company and all client and customer facing businesses. The rebranding roll-out process for the new name and associated visual identity will begin in the summer and progress through 2021, alongside implementation of a full stakeholder engagement plan to manage the transition.
Our expertise and resource enables us to offer a wide range of investment solutions and services designed to meet our clients’ needs today, tomorrow and for the longer term. We manage and administer £535 billion of assets worldwide.
Wherever we are in the world we strive to make a positive long-term impact. This means delivering world-class investment solutions. It also means operating ethically, encouraging good practices among companies we invest in, and providing support and expertise for the benefit of the communities in which we operate.
Standard Life Aberdeen plc is headquartered in Scotland. It has over 1 million shareholders and is listed on the London Stock Exchange.
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abrdn plc is registered in Scotland (SC286832) at 1 George Street, Edinburgh, EH2 2LL