Arçelik Becomes Carbon-Neutral
“Carbon neutrality” means the balance between emitting carbon and absorbing carbon from the atmosphere. In line with this, “carbon-neutral” is the term used to describe the status of an entity (such as a country, company, service, product or event), where the carbon emissions caused by it have been balanced out by ensuring an equivalent amount of carbon savings.
Human activities such as burning fossil fuels, deforestation and land use cause carbon emissions that exceed what can be absorbed by natural ecosystems. This resulted in an increase in the concentration of atmospheric CO2 by 47% since around 1750. The rise in atmospheric CO2 levels is a major cause of global warming.
It’s essential to achieve carbon neutrality by the mid-21st century in order to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius – a threshold that the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC) suggests is safe. This target is also set out in the Paris Agreement signed by 195 countries.
Nearly 30 countries have varying commitments to go carbon-neutral. More and more countries, such as the UK and France, have passed legislation for becoming carbon-neutral by 2050. The EU has proposed restructuring its economy to achieve the same goal and will allocate more than EUR 500 billion to combat climate change, from electric cars to renewable energy and agriculture. China recently pledged to become carbon-neutral by 2060. To achieve carbon neutrality, countries can commit to the transition to cleaner vehicles and greener economies, reduce carbon-intensive manufacturing and switch to renewable energy alternatives.
As far as businesses are concerned, more and more global companies have been committing to reach carbon neutrality. EY has a global carbon-neutral target for its Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions by the end of 2020. Novartis aims to achieve carbon neutrality across its value chain (Scope 1, 2, and 3) by 2030. AT&T has committed to be carbon-neutral throughout its global operations by 2035, and Volvo has announced plans to become carbon-neutral by 2040 (with a target to reduce emissions by 40% and generate 50% of its global sales from electric vehicles). Surely, there will be many more to follow suit.
How Arçelik does its part as a progressive global citizen?
As a leading company in sustainability, we succeeded in becoming carbon-neutral in global production* with our own carbon credits and have taken another important step in the fight against climate crisis.
This marks a milestone in our sustainability efforts covering nearly 150 nations with our “Respecting the World, Respected Worldwide” vision. Developing climate-friendly products that use less resources and that are accessible to all in line with the 2030 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, we have demonstrated our commitment to accelerating a low-carbon future.
“Within the scope of the Carbon Financing Project for Energy Efficient Refrigerators in Turkey, we received the right to 305,407 tons of CO2e emission reductions between 2013 and 2018. With this carbon credit we obtained by introducing innovative refrigerators with high energy efficiency level to the Turkish market, we achieved a meaningful shift from ‘business as usual’ to a new technology and thus, our global production facilities* will become carbon-neutral in 2019 and 2020 fiscal years. For us, sustainability is both a must for the future of humanity and a profitable business model”, comments Hakan Bulgurlu, our CEO.
In 2013, we initiated The Carbon Financing Project with the consultancy of GAIA Carbon Finance. The 305,407 tons of carbon credit we earned via the project, was verified by a 3rd party verification company RINA in compliance with the Verified Carbon Standard. And now, we will use this credit to offset our direct and indirect GHG emissions (Scope 1 and Scope 2) generated in global production plants in 2019* (verified by an independent third party, BSI Group) and 2020. This will allow us to become carbon neutral in global production in 2019 and 2020 fiscal years without purchasing any carbon offset credit, in accordance with PAS 2060 carbon neutrality standard, self-declared by us.
Given our ecosystem, we have identified the reduction of greenhouse gasses and increasing the awareness among all stakeholders across the entire value chain, starting with local operations, as our top priorities to help solve the climate crisis. Through our carbon-neutral roadmap based on the Science-Based Targets Initiative (SBTi), we plan to continue the Carbon Financing Project for another 4 years and to contribute to the reduction of GHG emissions through various investments in renewable energy, and verification for our efforts at our own Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Recycling Plants. Having committed to the SBTi in 2017, efforts are underway on finalizing our global Scope 1-2-3 emission reduction targets.
With our innovative products and improved operations, we make a positive impact by
reducing our carbon footprint and preserving vital resources. By designing circular and
regenerative business models, we offer solutions that address the climate crisis, plastic pollution, food waste, water and energy resources. We have set ambitious targets for zero waste and carbon neutral operations and are obtaining concrete results.
In order to tackle the climate crisis and achieve carbon neutrality, we will focus on the following practices:
Investing in renewable energy systems at own production sites
2030 target: Establishing 15 MW of renewable energy systems
Purchasing electricity from documented renewable sources
In 2019, 100% of electricity was purchased from documented renewable sources in Turkey and Romania operations.
2030 target: Purchasing 100% of electricity from documented renewable sources in global production plants, where market allows.
Investing in energy efficiency projects in production
2030 target: Reducing energy consumption per product in manufacturing by 45% (compared to 2015 baseline in South Africa, Russia, Turkey, Romania, China, Thailand and Pakistan operations)
For further information about our declaration on the climate related risks and opportunities, please refer to 2019 Sustainability Report, “ESG Related Risks and Opportunities”.
*Singer Bangladesh which was acquired in 2019 and Voltbek in India which started production in 2020 are excluded from calculations.
84% of total GHG emissions generated by our global plants have been verified by BSI, an independent third party in 2019. GHG emissions generated by Turkey, Romania (refrigerator production), Russia, China, South Africa production plants (expect Wilsonia) have been certified by an independent third party in 2019. GHG emissions from South Africa-Wilsonia, Thailand, Pakistan and Romania washing machine production plants are not verified by an independent third party and the data is based on Arçelik declarations.