Tesco is set to install thousands of solar panels, set up solar farms and roll out an all electric delivery fleet as it significantly ramps up efforts to be carbon neutral.
The UK’s largest retailer has brought forward its target to be net zero carbon emissions by a whopping 15 years, now pledging to achieve its goal by 2035.
To reach this ambitious target, Tesco says it will begin rolling out electric delivery vans as soon as this month, with plans to make its entire delivery fleet electric by 2028.
Since March when the UK’s first lockdown was announced, Tesco has rapidly expanded its home delivery capacity to meet skyrocketing demand and now boasts 1.5 million delivery slots every week, making its fleet a focal point for its emissions targets.
Meanwhile Tesco announced plans to install thousands of solar panels across its store estate while investing heavily in solar farms in a bid to use only renewable energy by 2030.
In partnership with renewable energy investor Low Carbon, Tesco will build three solar farms in Anglesey, Essex and Oxfordshire capable of generating 130GWh every year.
This is enough to power nearly 45,000 three-bedroom homes, and Tesco plans to put surplus energy back into the national grid.
By switching to renewable energy, Tesco says 30,308 tonnes of CO2 will be saved every year, the equivalent of taking 14,457 cars off the road.
It comes as smaller retailers and business groups have urged the government to provide help to enable them to transition to greener operations.
In a joint letter penned by the CBI, BCC, FSB, Make UK and the Institute of Directors, the group said: “Big corporations have big budgets for green initiatives, but smaller firms need support to make sure they don’t get left behind.
“At a time when all political parties support the target that the UK should be carbon free by 2050, it’s now down to the government to ensure businesses aren’t disproportionately hit.”