In our seventh year of carbon neutral certification, we decided to go one step further and become ‘carbon neutral plus’. This means we offset more emissions than the business generates to achieve a positive environmental impact.
As well as offsetting carbon emissions, we strive to decrease them. A recent assessment found Liberty Wines reduced carbon emissions for the third year running in 2020, achieving a reduction of 34% since 2017.*
Our greenhouse gas calculations include all scope 1 and 2 emissions, plus selected scope 3 emissions – outsourced transport, business travel, remote working, waste, water and paper use. The total emissions we saved in 2020 versus the previous year are equivalent to the volume generated by the annual electricity usage of 80+ homes, or the consumption of 44,300 gallons of diesel.
In another new initiative, we are proud to support Seawilding, a charity based in Scotland that works to restore degraded marine habitats and species, improve water quality and sequester carbon. Two key projects, both taking place in Loch Craignish, are a five-year scheme to grow up to one million juvenile native oysters, and a seagrass restoration project. Seagrass meadows are important habitats for marine life and sequester carbon faster than the rainforest but, according to Ocean Seagrass Rescue, 95% of the UK’s seagrass meadows have disappeared.
Through Carbon Footprint’s offsetting programme, we are helping fund several global projects such as planting trees to protect forests and biodiversity in Kenya (main photo), reducing deforestation in the Amazonian rain forest and installing and maintaining wind turbines in Maharashtra, India.
Nationally and globally, behaviour change following the Covid-19 pandemic reduced carbon footprints. Provisional UK government figures show a 10.7% reduction in carbon emissions in 2020 and theIntergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has forecasted a global 4-8% reduction. Our year-on-year reduction achieved in 2020 was 29%.
To achieve results so far ahead of the national and global averages, we implemented some key initiatives with a focus on energy and transport – the biggest sources of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Some examples are:
- Our Clapham headquarters switched to 100% renewable energy - We used lower-emission rail or sea shipments wherever possible and consolidating orders - Route-planning software increased van fill-rates and improved delivery efficiency - Our first electric van is about to be introduced in London
Managing Director David Gleave MW explains the importance of these moves: “After years of conversations with grape growers and hearing first-hand the impact of erratic or extreme weather on their harvests, I’m in no doubt as to the need to address climate change with a sense of urgency. As a fast-growing company it’s imperative that we build a sustainable future, and it’s gratifying to see our annual emissions fall as business levels increase. The move to ‘carbon neutral plus’ certification seemed a natural next step and enables us to make a positive contribution to the environment. We’re also pleased to support Seawilding and the valuable work they’re doing to restore native oyster populations and protect marine habitats.”
* Liberty Wines has assessed carbon emissions annually since 2013. In 2017, we set a new baseline year due to a substantial increase in the quality and amount of data available.