Delhaize Belgium has announced that all of its 763 stores in the country are now CO₂ neutral.
The retailer achieved a 70% reduction in CO₂ emissions in all its stores in just over ten years. The remaining 30% was offset by starting up and supporting sustainable projects at home and abroad.
By the end of 2021, Delhaize aims to make its entire operation in the country CO₂ neutral.
The amount of CO₂ in the atmosphere has increased significantly in the last 100 years, and the retailer aims to reverse this as it negatively impacts the climate.
CO₂ reduction has been high on Delhaize's priorities due to the chain's Lion's Footprint programme.
Lion's Footprint is the group's sustainability plan, which outlines its commitment to the environment.
The retailer aims to reduce its ecological footprint with a three-step plan: achieve plastic neutrality, combat food waste, and achieve CO₂ neutrality by the end of 2021.
Delhaize undertook a number of steps to achieve its goal of carbon neutrality.
The retailer began by identifying the most significant contributors to carbon emissions within its operations and found that the 763 stores were responsible for more than three-quarters of Delhaize's total CO₂ emissions.
The retailer began using green electricity and installed heat pumps, solar panels, energy-efficient LED lighting, and energy-efficient fridges and freezers and doors to combat emissions to rectify this.
CEO of Delhaize, Xavier Piesvaux, said, "The CO₂ issue is one of our top priorities today because we must act now to leave a healthy planet for future generations.
"As one of the largest retailers in Belgium, we want to create a positive impact, and our CO₂ emissions are our responsibility. The CO₂ neutral stores is a step in the right direction, and it shows that together we can make a difference, that we can work together on a CO₂ neutral planet."
Delhaize succeeded in emitting 70% less CO₂ than 12 years ago through the measures outlined, equating to more than 93,000 tonnes of emissions less per year.
The savings per year equate to 25,833 fewer cars on Belgian roads or the emissions of more than 11,000 households on an annual basis.
© 2021 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Conor Farrelly. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.