Towards more sustainable homes

In order to decrease the greenhouse gas emissions from the use of its products, Kingfisher works to improve the performance of its ranges.

Main project's drivers for reducing the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions

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Energy and resource efficiency

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Energy Decarbonisation

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Energy efficiency improvements

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Improving efficiency in non-energy resources

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Emission removal

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Financing low-carbon issuers or disinvestment from carbon assets

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Reduction of other greenhouse gases emission

Project objectives

To improve the environmental impact of its products, Kingfisher particularly works on 3 topics:
- sustainable sourcing of 100% wood and paper products
- improving characteristics of light bulbs and energy-using products
- switching to peat-free products

We made sustainability improvements across many of our product ranges and updated our Sustainable Home Product Guidelines. Sustainable Home Products have a lower environmental impact or help customers to live more sustainably. They include everything from insulation, water efficient taps and chemical-free gardening ranges, to products made from responsibly sourced wood and recycled plastic. We have a target of 60% of Group sales to be from our Sustainable Home Products (SHP) by 2025, including 70% of sales for own exclusive brand products (OEB).

Peatlands are an important and unique habitat and store twice as much carbon as the world’s forests. However, huge areas of peatland have been destroyed, with the use of peat in horticulture a contributing factor. Moving to peat-free gardening is one of the biggest contributions our industry can make towards tackling climate change. For almost 30 years, Kingfisher has been working to remove peat from its products in the UK.

These initiatives are part of the company’s roadmap to achieve a 40% reduction (per million pounds (£) turnover) of CO2 emissions from purchased goods and services and use of sold products, by 2025 from a 2017/18 baseline (scope 3). This target is approved by the Sciences Based Targets initiative, confirming it aligns with a 1,5°C trajectory.

Focus on lighting products 

The company has a strong focus on reducing the emissions from the use of its products. Customer use of light bulbs or energy-using appliances for instance, make up 40% of the company’s scope 3 emissions. By improving energy efficiency, it can reduce product-related emissions and help customers save on their energy bills. Since 2017/18, we have reduced emissions associated with our lighting range by over 50% by switching to LED products and from appliances and cooling products by over 20%, by selling more induction hobs and more efficient air conditioning and extraction devices. In total, we have reduced emissions from energy-using products by 1.4 million tonnes of CO2e since 2017/18.

 

Focus on peat-free products

Peatlands store more carbon than forests and are a unique and important habitat. Removing peat from our garden ranges is one of the most important actions we can take to help tackle climate change. 

 

Our GoodHome high-quality 100% peat-free compost is now on sale in the UK, France, Poland and Romania, at the same price as our previous peat-based ranges. It uses coir and other ingredients to replace peat. 

We work closely with our suppliers and growers to develop, test and refine our peat free products. This process has taken many years due to the challenges of finding suitable replacement ingredients that are widely available and ensuring that peat-free products are affordable. We have also needed to address scepticism among some users and parts of the industry about the performance of peat-free products.

 

How close are we getting to peat-free? In 2021/22 for the UK, Ireland, France, Poland and Romania, 63.8% of bagged growing media used alternative non-peat materials, compared with 52.2% in 2020/21 (Romania not in scope for 2020/21). 

We significantly expanded our range of peat free compost products in 2021 to include, for example, grow bags, rose compost and herb compost products. We are working on developing a peat-free ericaceous compost. Most compost and other growing media are sold by B&Q (around 77% of our total), who have committed to be 100% peat-free across bagged growing media in 2023. In 2021, they reached 71.5%. Our banners in France and Poland are also working towards being 100% peat-free.

 

Working with plant suppliers. We’re working with our plant suppliers to phase out peat from pot and pack bedding and hardy plants. The majority of our bedding plant ranges are now peat-free but other categories, for example house plants, are more challenging and further innovation is needed to identify high-quality and widely available alternatives to peat.

Emission scope(s)

on which the project has a significant impact

Scope 1

Direct emissions generated by the company's activity.

Scope 2

Indirect emissions associated with the company's electricity and heat consumption.

Scope 3

Emissions induced (upstream or downstream) by the company's activities, products and/or services in its value chain.

Emission Removal

Carbon sinks creation, (BECCS, CCU/S, …)

Avoided Emissions

Emissions avoided by the activities, products and/or services in charge of the project, or by the financing of emission reduction projects.

Scope 3 - Switching to LED, induction hobs, reducing emissions from energy-using products such as appliances.

In total, we have reduced emissions from energy-using products by 1.4 million tonnes of CO2e since 2017/18. This takes account of a product’s estimated lifetime carbon emissions from energy use. This has reduced the intensity of our emissions from the supply chain and customer use of products by 19.7%, meaning we are on track to meet our target of 40% by 2025.

The company reports the breakdown of its CO2e in line with the three scopes defined under the WRI/WBCSD GHG Protocol. This activity sits within it scope 3 reporting, category 11 use of sold products.

Bioregional performs a set of calculations to assess the energy and carbon impact of energy-using products and renewable energy systems in Kingfisher’s range, which are in use by customers. Examples of products included are lighting, heating appliances (gas and electric), white goods, air conditioning, solar thermal collectors. The calculation quantifies this energy use, of all energy-using products sold in a given year, over the expected lifetime that customers would use them for.

From the energy use figure, the lifetime emissions are calculated as a snapshot of the products sold in the reporting year. This calculation takes into account the carbon intensity of the grid of the country in which it was sold, using publicly reported figures for recent years. For its UK operations, these are obtained from DEFRA/BEIS (‘2021 UK Government GHG Conversion Factors for Company Reporting’, version 1.0 (expiry 1 June 2022). For all its non-UK operations, it obtains the emission factors from the IEA (source: IEA Emissions Factors, 2021 edition) and extrapolate to expected carbon intensity figures to estimate the carbon emissions from use of the product in future years.

Key points

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Invested amount

Product range reviews are incorporated into our processes and therefore there is no additional cost for this project.

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Starting date of the project

2017

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Project localisation

UK, France, Spain, Portugal, Poland, Romania.

Project maturity level

Prototype laboratory test (TRL 7)

Real life testing (TRL 7-8)

Pre-commercial prototype (TRL 9)

Small-scale implementation

Medium to large scale implementation

Economic profitability of the project (ROI)

Short term (0-3years)

Middle term (4-10 years)

Long term (> 10 years)

Illustrations of the project

Kingfisher’s projects contribute to the following SDG:

  • Goal 7: Affordable and clean energy
  • Goal 11: Sustainable cities and communities
  • Goal 12: Responsible consumption and production
  • Goal 13: Climate Action
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Contact the company carrying the project :

annevirginie.dissard@kingfisher.com

Kingfisher’s other projects :