Howdens depots switch to renewable energy

Trade kitchen supplier Howdens has announced that 96% of its depots nationwide have switched to using renewable energy as part of its strategy to achieve net zero emissions by 2050.

The majority of Howdens depots have now switched over to solar, wind or hydroelectric energy. Depot electricity emissions previously accounted for 10% of the company’s total business carbon footprint.

The switch to renewable energy sources means that, with more than 750 depots, the move will equate to a reduction of more than 6,500 tonnes of CO2 a year.

A small number of depots have not moved over to using renewable energy because their providers are arranged directly by their landlords. Howdens said it is working with those landlords to adopt green energy sources.

Rob Black, Howdens director of environment, social and governance, said of the move: “Switching to green, renewable energy across the majority of our depot network is a great stride on our Road to Zero. It supports our vision to become the UK’s leading sustainable kitchen and joinery business, and furthers our commitment to reducing the impact on the environment in all areas.”

Howdens also switched recently to vegetable oil fuel to run its fleet of vehicles in a “landmark commitment” to reduce CO2 emissions. By changing over to Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil (HVO) to run its fleet, Howdens said it should save 90% on CO2 emissions for every journey.

Earlier this year, Howdens committed to set near- and long-term company-wide emission reduction targets – which include to halve emissions by 2030 and to achieve net zero by 2050 – in line with the Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTi).

The goals are based on the Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTi), and Howdens is the first major UK kitchen to base targets in line with the SBTi. The Science Based Targets initiative is a global body enabling businesses to set ambitious emissions reduction targets in line with the latest climate science.

In 2021, Howdens achieved carbon-neutral manufacturing at its sites in Howden in Yorkshire and Runcorn in Cheshire. At these sites, 100% of production waste is reused, recovered or recycled with only 1% of waste going to landfill.

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