USA – Walmart Inc., a multinational retail corporation, has announced that it is targeting zero emissions from its global operations by 2040, a small fraction of its total, in the latest climate-focused step amid heightened calls from investors and activists to reduce carbon footprints.
The world’s biggest retailer also plans to secure enough wind, solar and other renewable energy sources to power its facilities with 100 per cent green power by 2035, it said in a statement. It had previously said that it aims to secure half of its power from renewable sources by 2025.
All its vehicles, including long-haul trucks, will either be electric or zero-emissions. And the company will switch to eco-friendly cooling and heating equipment by 2030.
Walmart is committing to cutting emissions from its own operations, known as Scope 1 and 2. Though not an easy task, the target will zero out merely five per cent of its total emissions.
The retailing giant has put in some efforts through so-called Project Gigaton to address Scope 3 emissions, which are generated by its suppliers and customers, but the company has yet to set a net-zero target across all scopes.
As well, it plans to manage or restore at least 50 million acres of land and one million square miles of ocean by 2030, and transition to low-impact refrigerants for cooling and electrified equipment for heating in its stores, clubs, and data and distribution centers by 2040.
“We must all take urgent, sustained action to reverse nature loss and emissions before we reach a tipping point from which we will not recover,” said Kathleen McLaughlin, executive vice president and chief sustainability officer for Walmart, Inc. and president of the Walmart Foundation.
“People have pushed past the earth’s natural limits. Healthy societies, resilient economies and thriving businesses rely on nature. Our vision at Walmart is to help transform food and product supply chains to be regenerative, working in harmony with nature – to protect, restore and sustainably use our natural resources.”
Walmart is a member of a the We Mean Business Coalition, a group of companies that committed to reduce emissions in line with the goals set out in the 2015 Paris Agreement.
With studies showing a sharp decline in animal populations, as much as 60%, and depletion of the Amazon rainforest, Walmart is also taking steps to manage or restore land.
For every acre of land the company develops, Walmart says it will preserve one acre of natural habitat. The company will push for regenerative agriculture practices and sustainable fisheries management.
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