Walmart, the US owner of UK supermarket chain ASDA, has committed to derive 50% of the group’s energy demand from renewable sources by 2025.
The target comes under a recently approved plan to reduce its carbon emissions by 18% within the same timeframe, in the process claiming to become the world’s first retailer to have its emissions reduction plan approved by the Science Based Targets Initiative.
The details were announced by president and chief executive Doug McMillon at last week’s Net Impact Conference in Seattle, Washington, and included a further commitment to work with the group’s suppliers to reduce emissions by 1 gigaton by 2030.
“We want to make sure Walmart is a company that our associates and customers are proud of – and that we are always doing right by them and by the communities they live in… That’s really what these commitments are about. And that’s why we’re so passionate about them,” McMillon said.
Walmart already claims to be one of the largest private-sector investors in renewable energy – particularly wind and solar – and in 2015 was deriving a quarter of its total energy demand from renewables.
Its new plan – an extension of targets previously set in 2005 – will see the supermarket chain expand its use of renewable energy and combine it with various energy efficiency measures to achieve the desired reduction in carbon emissions.
This reduction, Walmart said, would be the equivalent of taking more than 211 million passenger vehicles off the road for a calendar year.