Tesco aims to be a zero-carbon business by 2050
Tesco CEO Sir Terry Leahy has called on governments around the world to work with private companies to ensure that innovation in low-carbon growth is not unnecessarily hindered by red tape.
Announcing the opening of two zero-carbon stores in Thailand and the Czech Republic, Sir Terry Leahy said governments needed to create the regulatory environment that will allow private companies to lead the way in bringing about economic growth that is sustainable in every sense, working to make green choices cheaper, simpler and more attractive to consumers.
“Regulation has its place in setting the right framework for action on climate change, for example through an effective carbon price. But I believe in the power of the market and in people's creativity to tackle major challenges. Governments can help create the right framework, but they cannot match the energy
and innovation of the market.”
Sir Terry told a distinguished panel of representatives of government and industry, including Lord Stern and South Africa's Minister of Economic Development Ebrahim Patel* that it was private companies like Tesco that will lead the way to greener economies.
“As economies develop, we need to do our best to make their growth as green as possible. We opened the first zero-carbon store in the UK last year and we're now applying the lessons we've learned across the world. We're sharing our experience with suppliers and working with them to address key challenges such as deforestation and how to control emissions from refrigeration.”
While consumers in industrialised economies are responsible for two-thirds or more of carbon emissions, this can't be allowed to happen in emerging economies, Sir Terry added:
“The challenge is to tap into consumer power. Encourage consumers
to go green, not just by saving energy but buying products with a low carbon footprint – if we can do that, then we will create a mass movement in green consumption.”
Tesco is leading by example. The ground-breaking new stores located in Bang Phra, 40km east of Bangkok and in Jaromer will help Tesco to reduce carbon emissions across its global business by 50% by 2020. Tesco aims to be a zero-carbon business by 2050.
The zero-carbon hypermarket at Jaromer will open in February next month. The store has a distinctive timber structure and roof, with wooden cladding to minimise the carbon associated with
building the store.
The Bang Phra zero-carbon store, set to open in the second half of 2011 in Chonburi province, will generate renewable energy onsite from 10 wind turbines plus a solar farm with panels located on the shop roof, car park canopies and neighbouring vacant land.
Tesco's new Leadership Academy in Jungu, Incheon, South Korea will also be a zero-carbon development and will open in July 2011.
South Africa will host the next United Nations Convention on Climate Change in Durban from 28 November-9 December 2011. This follows the talks last year in Cancun and in Copenhagen at the end of 2009.