DS Smith introduces new targets to boost circular economy transition

KIEV, UKRAINE - April 17, 2019: In this photo illustration a DS Smith plc logo seen displayed on a smart phone

The new goals, introduced in the company’s Now and Next sustainability strategy, include conducting five reuse pilots and maintaining the production of fully recyclable and reusable packaging by 2025; decreasing Scope 1, 2, and 3 greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 46% by 2030 compared to 2019/20; involving ten million individuals (increased from five million) in circular lifestyles by 2030; and enhancing forest biodiversity and assessing nature’s reliance by 2025.

DS Smith’s chief executive officer Miles Roberts said: “We have made good progress with our Now & Next Sustainability Strategy, but the world around us demands that we all do more.

“That is why we are taking action today to ensure our commitments deliver at pace in a rapidly changing world, and accelerate our transition to a low carbon, circular, economy.”

Since the launch of the Now & Next strategy, the business has met nine of its 26 targets, including using 100% recyclable or reusable packaging, certifying 100% of the brand’s energy consumption with ISO50001, introducing 100 biodiversity projects across Europe and North America, implementing water mitigation plans in 100% of sites located in areas of high-water stress, and ensuring that 100% of the papers used in manufacturing are either recycled or chain of custody certified, among others.

An additional three targets are tracking ahead of schedule, which include the removal of one billion items of plastic by 2025, the optimisation of fibre for individual supply chains in 100% of new packaging solutions by 2025, and the engagement of five million people in the circular economy and circular lifestyles.

The brand has replaced 762 million pieces of what it calls “problem” plastics with fibre-based alternatives and created more than 30,000 circular-ready projects using its circular design metrics since 2020.

This year, DS Smith achieved a 10% reduction in CO2 emissions (15% compared to 2019) and reduced water abstraction by 4% in paper mills located in water-stressed areas.

DS Smith has set a commitment to achieve net-zero by 2050.

Roberts added: “To address climate change, it is critical we adopt low carbon, renewable, energy sources. But we must also address how we make and use things in our everyday lives, by moving to the circular economy.

“Through our Circular Design Principles, we already act as the gateway to the circular economy for our customers, helping some of the world’s most recognisable fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) brands meet their sustainability goals, alongside our own.”

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