- On the 4th of February 2020 we announced that we want to be net zero carbon by 2030 across our value chain: our operations, our supply chain and the use of our products by our customers. Net Zero cannot be delivered at the last minute and if we want to hold warming below the 1.5 degrees threshold those of us that can must bring net zero forward. With the right leadership, there is still time to get the world back on track, and we must play our part. A business of our size, scale and reach has a responsibility to act. It’s clear that climate action is necessary, and the time to act is now, driving change that is good for people and planet.
- Transparency and collaboration are key on this journey. We have publicly reported our carbon footprint across scopes 1, 2 and 3 for many years, and use this to drive progress against targets. For our progress toward our net zero carbon commitment we will continue to report on our targets and performance on an annual basis.
Our approach and targets are grounded in the science. It is crucial we apply a common science-based approach and our targets have been validated by the Science Based Target initiative. This tells us that by 2030, we need to have halved our entire carbon emissions across our business, our supply chain and the impact of the use of our products in customer homes. Science-based targets provide companies with a clear pathway to future-proof growth by specifying how much and how quickly they need to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions.
- Only a wave of action by business, governments and individuals will solve the climate crisis. Our ambitious public target allows our business and suppliers to align behind the same goal. But more than that, we hope it can inspire others, creating a ripple that helps catalyse the exponential change the world needs. As a participant of the UN Global Compact, we are proud to support the Business Ambition for 1.5°C. We’re working with our partners at Business in the Community to galvanise support for a 2030 trajectory and the WWF to invest in nature. We are also members of RE100.
- Following a science-based approach makes it clear that all three scopes must be included in a science-based target commitment when scope 3 emissions total more than 40% of the overall value chain carbon emissions. Scope 1 emissions are the direct emissions that are created from our activities including the running of our 5,000 vehicles (engineer vans, shuttle buses and broadcast operations trucks) and the use of diesel generators on site. Scope 2 emissions are indirect emissions that come from the production of electricity or heat used from the grid that heat or power the buildings we own or occupy. Scope 3 emissions are the indirection emissions that come from other activities we are engaged in. For us this includes business travel and employee commuting, our entire supply chain, the full life cycle of our products and the emissions resulting in the use of our products in our customers' homes. We report our scope 1,2 and 3.
- We believe that climate action can and should be undertaken with people at its heart. A ‘just transition’ for workers and communities as the world’s economy responds to climate change was included as part of the 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change. From the construction and use of the new sustainable buildings we create, to the sourcing of new low carbon vehicles, we will work to ensure that the impact we have is not only the good for the planet, but for people too.
- Our commitment will see Sky halve its overall carbon footprint in ten years. And whilst we continue to reduce our emissions, we will continue to offset our remaining (scope 1 and 2 + business travel) emissions in natural carbon sinks including mangrove restoration and reforestation.
For our scope 1 and 2, over the next 10 years we will:
- Halve our carbon intensity across the Group.
- Continue our commitment to use 100% renewable energy and invest in on-site renewable.
- Transition our 5,000 vehicles to zero emissions.
- Focus on sustainable product design and delivery to drive towards net zero carbon.
- Continue to increase energy efficiency measures across our new and existing buildings and ensure that all new and refurbished buildings are certified BREAM Excellent.
For our scope 3 we will:
- Continue to ensure sustainability and efficiency is at the heart of our product design. We are founding members of the European voluntary agreement for energy efficiency and eco-design of set top boxes.
- Halve the carbon footprint from the use of our products in customer homes by 2030.
- Collaborate to ensure resource efficiency is placed at the heart of the UK’s industrial strategy in its path to net zero with University and industry partners as part of our involvement in the UK Future Industrial Resource Efficiency Strategy.
- Work with our 11,000 suppliers to act and use our voice, influence and partnerships to advocate for change.
- Continue to increase our engagement with suppliers on climate change through CDP Supply Chain.
- Continue our close collaboration with manufacturing suppliers of our Sky Products such as supporting energy efficiency audits and enabling investment in on site renewables.
- Expand this approach to our wider supply chains.
- For over 10 years, we have been campaigning to raise awareness of the importance of protecting and restoring the world’s natural carbon sinks and having a positive impact on our climate. Through our work with WWF, Sky Rainforest Rescue avoided 3.7m tonnes of carbon. As an order of magnitude, this represents fifty times our direct operational carbon footprint.
- The health of our Oceans is essential to achieving net zero carbon. Healthy oceans absorb approximately 40% of the world’s carbon emissions. Through Sky Ocean Rescue we are using our voice to restore ocean health through the reduction of single-use plastic pollution and the restoration of key habitats including seagrass.
- We launched an investment fund two years ago called Sky Ocean Ventures.. It is accelerating ideas to help us all to kick our plastic habit. We're looking for transformational products and solutions that can change the way millions of people live, enabling us all to use less plastic and recycle more.
- There is a difference between carbon neutral and net zero carbon. While they sound similar, they are in fact different. The first area of difference is in scope. Typically, a business will be carbon neutral for its operations (scope 1 and 2) whereas a commitment to net zero carbon will be across scopes 1, 2 and 3. This could be much greater than a company’s own emissions. Secondly, Net Zero requires a different type of offset: to be net zero carbon the offset needs to remove the carbon from the atmosphere through the investment in natural carbon sinks or carbon capture and storage. As a carbon neural business, since 2006 we’ve invested in natural carbon sinks such as mangroves restoration, and reforestation, but also, included renewable energy projects. With Sky Zero, we’re committing that 100% of our ‘carbon neutral’ offsets for our direct business will be in nature, sequestering carbon. You can read more information on our carbon neutral approach.
- From 2030 we will offset any remaining carbon footprint across our entire value chain in natural carbon sinks such as forests, mangroves and seagrass and continue to reduce our footprint beyond that point whilst continuing to reduce carbon emissions to be net zero.
- When we calculate our customer carbon footprint as part of our scope 3, we include all the products we provide to our customers. We don’t include the use of other products, such as TV sets and any broadband and mobile devices not provided by Sky. That’s in line with the GHG protocol. We are however mapping the wider digital impact of our industry through a collaboration with Bristol University to enable more informed decision-making to reduce the wider carbon footprint of digital services.
Jeremy Darroch, Group Chief Executive, Sky, said: “We are entering a critical decade on the long road to climate recovery, and all businesses have the opportunity to accelerate progress and become part of the solution.
“Every business depends on and is fundamentally connected to the environment, and we have a responsibility to protect it. We need to take action now – because the world can’t wait.
“We’re on the journey, and we want to bring everyone with us. Sky Zero will transform our business, advocate for change and inspire our 24 million customers to go zero.”
Andrea Leadsom, Secretary of State for Business and Energy: “This Government is committed to both tackling climate change and to making the UK the best place in the world to grow a business. An ambitious commitment like this one from Sky shows these can be done at the same time, and I am sure many other businesses will follow suit.”
Tanya Steele, WWF Chief Executive, said: “Sky’s net zero pledge is ambitious and hugely welcome as it stretches across its supply chain and will reach millions of its customers. Only a handful of UK businesses are showing the leadership that is needed to help tackle the climate crisis in this way, despite the devastating toll that climate change is taking on our planet. We hope that Sky’s pledge will inspire and support customers and communities to live a lower-carbon lifestyle so the impact will be felt throughout the country.
“We are running out of time to act. More companies urgently need to follow Sky’s lead and commit to a science-based target limiting global temperature rise to no more than 1.5°C. The Government must deliver the policies that businesses need to cut their carbon and minimise their impact on nature, not just within their organisations but throughout all their business activities including the products and services they offer to customers.”
Ambassador Luis Alfonso de Alba, UN Special Envoy for the 2019 Climate Action Summit, said: “We need concrete, realistic plans by 2020 to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 45% over the next decade, and to net zero by 2050.
“Climate change requires an unprecedented effort from all sectors of society and business leadership demonstrated by setting science-based targets at 1.5°C will send strong market signals as we look to identify the scalable and replicable solutions needed to secure a world where no one is left behind.”