Being a sustainable business
intu’s purpose is to help our customers flourish, and make our visitors smile. Our focus on corporate responsibility is a vital part of our strategy, helping to ensure our business is sustainable for the long term.
We recognise the need to minimise the impact we have on the environment, and environmental efficiency is a key tenet of our CR strategy. Not only is it the right thing to do for our environment, but it also has a cost-saving benefit as well. Our track record shows that we mean what we say.
Since 2010, we’ve reduced our carbon emission intensity by 64%. This was achieved primarily through our flagship LED lighting programme, which has saved over £25 million on electricity costs so far, cost savings that are shared with our customers through our service charge.
The UK Government has committed to reaching net zero carbon emissions by 2050. In line with this, we’re developing our own pathway to net zero carbon emissions, which will effectively end our contribution to climate change. A formal strategy for outlining how we will achieve this will be launched next year. For now, our journey to becoming a net zero business is focussed on maximising energy efficiency and we’re on track to halve our energy consumption in the next few years (compared to 2010 levels).
We already purchase certified renewable electricity for all our centres, and we’re working on enhancing our sustainable building design standards and looking at how we can provide more sustainable stores for our tenants.
We’re increasing investment in renewable technologies. We already have onsite solar generation at intu Chapelfield, which last year produced 11% of the centre’s annual electricity demand, and at intu Lakeside, 335 solar panels have been installed on the roof of the 225,000 sq ft leisure development. In the pipeline, we have two major new installations planned at intu Metrocentre and intu Eldon Square to be delivered in 2020, which will also include innovative solar car charging ports for electric vehicles. In July 2019, we joined global initiative EV100 to accelerate the transition to electric vehicles and the promotion of sustainable methods of transport.
Purple, a not-for-profit organisation that promotes the spending power of the UK’s 14 million disabled people – has said that the retail and leisure industry is missing out on a £249 billion market known as the ‘purple pound’.
It launched Purple Tuesday last year, a national day dedicated to the needs of disabled shoppers. As a long-term supporter of Purple, intu was one of the first of 700 businesses to sign up to the initiative and intu centres will take part once again in November by raising awareness and promoting what they do to support those with disabilities.
intu is working with a number of dementia and autism charities to create more accessible environments for visitors, this includes regular quiet hours at every intu centre.
“We want to ensure that intu shopping centres are accessible and inclusive destinations for everyone to enjoy,” says Amanda Campbell, intu’s corporate affairs and sustainability director. “We do this by working closely with our customers, visitors and important stakeholders like Purple to find new and innovative ways to improve our physical spaces, customer service and support for employees.”
We want to ensure that intu shopping centres are accessible and inclusive destinations for everyone to enjoy.
corporate affairs and sustainability director, intu
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