Office efficiencies help CommonwealthBank hit CO2 target five months early

Financial services provider CommonwealthBank has met its 20% carbon reduction target five months ahead of schedule through the implementation of a number of energy efficiency projects across its properties.

The Australian based company’s target represented an overall reduction of 34,550 tonnes of carbon (CO2-e), which it reached in January 2013.

Achieving its goal early has meant the company has since continued to curb emissions and as of June 30 2013, surpassed its target by an additional 10,658 t CO2-e.

A series of energy efficiency projects carried out at its offices and branches have driven the company’s reductions. These include the Green Refresh Program, which works to replace outdated lighting in 869 branches.

The company has also upgraded the heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems in 50 branches and 12 commercial buildings, while IT software to hibernate all PC’s (desktops and laptops) when not in use has been rolled out.

Further technology driven efficiencies include the staged replacement of conventional laptops with Apple MacBook Airs, which it claims consume approximately 30% less energy.

Vehicle efficiencies have also been carried out, with the replacement of approximately 1,000 six cylinder vehicles with four cylinder vehicles in its ‘tool of trade fleet’.

In addition to building and technology efficiencies, the company relocated over 19,000 employees from 19 buildings across Sydney to three purpose built, sustainable campuses, which the firm claims is one of the most ambitious corporate consolidations in Australia.

CommonwealthBank CEO Ian Narev said: “We have reached our 20% carbon reduction target that we set in 2009 and we continue to look for ways to improve our environmental footprint. We actively support the transition to a low-carbon economy”.

In driving sustainability further, a cross-business unit team is now focusing on how best to move beyond the firm’s 20% carbon reduction target.

Leigh Stringer

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