SWA and FWD reveal net zero roadmap and calculation tool

The FWD and SWA have revealed a UK wholesale net zero roadmap that consists of a bespoke carbon calculator tool for members, as well as a step-by-step climate action guide to help wholesalers reach net-zero targets.

Set to be unveiled at the FWD conference and presented in the near future to the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs and Department for Energy Security and Net Zero, the report reveals the UK wholesale value chain was responsible for producing 18m tonnes of CO2 equivalents in 2021.

It then goes onto explain that wholesalers are only directly responsible for approximately 4% of these in the operation of their businesses (referred to as Scope 1 & 2 emissions), with the majority in the chain upstream from manufactures and suppliers (referred to as Scope 3 emissions).

Alongside the roadmap, the SWA’s has launched its ‘Decarbonising the Scottish Wholesale Sector’ in which it explores the sector’s carbon emissions and attitudes to climate action and sets out its plans to reach net zero by 2040, in time for Scotland’s net-zero target of 2045.

Read more: SWA partners with sustainability experts

The SWA research for north of the Border identifies key sources of operational greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions for the sector as road transport, particularly HGVs, at 67.3% followed by electricity at 17.7%, refrigerants at 6.5% then use of fuel to heat buildings at 8.6%.

The SWA also asks the Scottish Government for capital cost support for a swift vehicle fleet transition, investment in zero-emission transport infrastructure, and support for a rapid transition to renewable electricity.

Colin Smith, SWA chief executive, commented: “The SWA and our members are sector leads in decarbonising our fleet emissions within Scotland’s food and drink supply chain. In this report we outline the primary sources of operational GHG emissions within our sector. We also highlight by region and business size the key motivations for member action, the barriers that we must overcome, and crucially the support needed if we are to make decarbonisation of the wholesale sector a reality by 2040 – our net-zero ambition as a sector across the UK – and in time for Scotland’s net-zero target by 2045.

“This report is an important step on our sustainability journey, during which the SWA will work hard to drive a just transition to a net-zero economy that can benefit all of Scotland’s wholesale sector.

“While the report shows that wholesalers overwhelmingly are willing to take action to achieve a just transition to net zero, the upfront capital investment required is the key barrier which is why that is one of our key policy asks of government.”

FWD, chief executive James Bielby added: “It is clear wholesalers are acting across all areas of their business, but more help and encouragement is needed to enable the sector to fully measure progress towards net zero. This is no longer an added extra, it’s a business essential for a wholesale channel which is sustainable – in both senses of the word.”

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Paul Hill is the Editor of Better Wholesaling. He can be found on Twitter at @BW_PaulHill, or contacted via paul.hill@newtrade.co.uk and 07960935659.


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