Waste and metal recycler CEO Chris Sheppard said that decarbonisation is "key" to driving the green recovery of the global economy after the damage wrought by the coronavirus.
European Metal Recycling (EMR) has committed to achieving net zero emissions across its value chain by 2040, 10 years ahead of the target date that is widely regarded as being in line with the Paris Agreement.
The metal and plastic recycler unveiled a raft of new sustainability targets last week, centred around a pledge to achieve net zero emissions across its entire value chain within 20 years.
Its efforts, it said, would be split across four key areas: renewable energy, energy productivity, transport, and material handling.
Chris Sheppard, group chief executive, said the fresh sustainability offering "marked the start of an exciting journey" for the firm, which recycles around 10 million tonnes of metals and plastics every year.
"Our products don't come without some environmental cost," he said. "Imagine being able to say that we create these sustainable materials with a net-zero carbon footprint? To achieve this, we need to go on a journey that explores new technologies and ways of working, to design carbon out of our business."
EMR has set out a number of interim targets en route to its overall carbon neutrality goal. By 2030, it has vowed that it will transition its operations entirely to renewable electricity, electrify its entire car fleet and half its small goods vehicles, and deliver a 10 per cent energy productivity improvement per total kWh tonne of material handled.
Sheppard added: "Now more than ever, improving environmental performance, while supporting people and businesses to be more sustainable is essential. Committing to decarbonisation is key to driving the green recovery of the global economy in a post-Covid world, creating jobs and driving investment, while delivering on global climate objectives."
The announcement follows the company's recent decision to join three corporate initiatives led by non profit the Climate Group: the RE100 initiative, which aims to accelerate companies' transition to 100 per cent renewables; EV100, which encourages the development of electric vehicle fleets; and EP100, which is geared at improving corporate energy productivity.
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