At Philips Lighting we have just completed our analysis of the most recent data published by the CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme. It reveals that organisations included in the scheme emitted a total of over 41 million metric tonnes of carbon dioxide during the 2015/16 period. This is equivalent to the greenhouse gas emissions of 8.7 million passenger vehicles driven for a year, or the CO2 emissions from the electricity usage of 6 million homes for a year.

Yet only a third (32 per cent) of these organisations confirmed they disclose carbon emission reduction targets in their annual reporting, with 15 per cent saying they don’t and over half (53 per cent) refusing to disclose whether they do or not.

Similarly, only 29 per cent of organisations disclose their performance against carbon emission reduction targets, with 16 per cent not disclosing their performance and 55 per cent not confirming whether they do or not.

Less than half of the organisations reporting to the scheme (45 per cent) say they actively engage employees to reduce carbon emissions at work.

Total CRC emissions by organisation type, 2015/16

The CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme

The CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme is a mandatory carbon emissions reporting and pricing scheme that covers large public and private sector organisations in the UK that use more than 6,000MWh of electricity per year and have at least one half-hourly meter settled on the half-hourly electricity market. The sectors targeted by the scheme generate over 10 per cent of UK CO2 emissions.
Our analysis reveals that private sector companies reporting to the scheme averaged 22,929 metric tonnes of CO2 emissions last year. To absorb this level of CO2 4,586 hectares of forest would be required; the equivalent of 6,423 soccer fields.

The 496 public bodies reporting to the scheme averaged only 13 per cent less, emitting 19,839 tonnes of CO2 during the year.

The CRC scheme was designed to reduce the emissions of those organizations with the largest carbon footprints in the UK, but our analysis suggests that the country’s largest public and private sector bodies still have a long way to go.

In our sustainability program, Brighter Lives, Better World, we have outlined ambitious targets to be achieved by 2020 including: to be carbon neutral, use only electricity from renewable sources, and send zero waste to landfill. Globally, over two-thirds of our electricity now comes from renewable sources.

Making concerted efforts to improve energy efficiency saves organisations money, improves their reputation and contributes to our climate change mitigation targets.

There are relatively straightforward actions organisations can take that can make a significant difference in a short space of time. With Philips InterAct Office, real estate owners don’t have to rip out and replace existing cabling. The system uses wireless gateways that connect the lamps and luminaires. By combining high-efficiency LED lighting with connected system management, energy savings of up to 70 percent can be achieved. We are set to introduce the Philips InterAct Office in the UK later this year.