Tesco invests in eco software to reduce carbon footprint

30 Sep 2009

Grocery retail giant Tesco has invested in eco software that will automate its efforts to meet ambitious carbon footprint reduction targets.

The UK’s biggest retailer and the world’s third-largest grocery retailer said last night it has selected CA ecoSoftware to help fulfil its long-term commitment to drive down carbon emissions across its global operations.

CA ecoSoftware helps enterprises and managed service providers in a wide range of industries manage carbon, reduce energy use and become more sustainable.

The software also enables organisations to better manage and govern their sustainability strategies, bringing what have traditionally been disparate departmental efforts into a centralised, cross-enterprise process and program. 

With 468,000 Tesco employees working at more than 4,000 locations across 14 countries, the task of accounting for carbon emissions is time-consuming and complex.

Tesco has implemented CA ecoSoftware to help increase the efficiency, speed, and accuracy of its carbon accounting process.

“When we announced our plan two years ago to reduce our carbon footprint by 50pc across all of our global operations, we knew we were taking on a big task,” said Mike Yorwerth, IT director of Tesco plc.

“Since that time, a number of people across the business have been involved in measuring, documenting and reporting on our emissions – a time-consuming, largely manual task.

“We’re also overseeing hundreds of projects around the world designed to reduce our carbon footprint, all of which need to be prioritised and measured. With CA ecoSoftware, we expect to streamline the process of data management, helping to reduce errors and operational expenses, and improve our ability to communicate major milestones,” Yorwerth said.

Based on ambitious targets announced in 2007 using 2006 as a baseline, Tesco plans to halve emissions from existing buildings by 2020; halve distribution emissions of each case of goods delivered by 2012; and halve emissions from new stores by 2020.

The company has already halved its energy use per square foot in its UK stores and is diverting 100pc of waste from its UK business away from landfill, achieving this target almost a year ahead of schedule. 

CA ecoSoftware includes visual tools designed for evaluating sustainability initiatives, such as projects to reduce carbon emissions or energy consumption, as well as program and project management capabilities, automated assessments for use internally and externally (for suppliers or other third parties), and direct energy metering able to capture information from devices within the data centre and facilities across the enterprise. 

The UK Carbon Reduction Commitment is new legislation that will target the non-energy intensive sectors, ultimately requiring thousands of public and private-sector organisations to monitor and publicly report their carbon data. With the subsequent registration of their emissions data required in 2010, the pressure for more accurate and streamlined disclosure processes is mounting.

“Businesses today are doing more than just talking about energy, carbon and sustainability,” Terrence Clark, senior vice-president and general manager of ecoSoftware at CA, explained.

“From investigating ways to reduce energy costs and mitigating climate-change risks facing the organisation, to seizing emerging opportunities, organisations are taking action. Rising energy costs, an increasing demand for energy and the expanding scope of carbon regulations mean that these issues have changed from a minor concern to a corporate imperative.

“CA ecoSoftware can help organisations like Tesco manage their carbon footprint and improve overall governance of their sustainability initiatives, which in turn facilitates collaboration and better decision-making, leading to improved results,” Clark said.

By John Kennedy

Photo: Tesco has implemented CA ecoSoftware to help increase the efficiency, speed, and accuracy of its carbon accounting process.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years