Reducing energy and emissions
From the roasting of our coffee to the lighting at our distribution centres, from the packaging of Tchibo products to their delivery to the customer – energy is indispensable in our business. But in our efforts to curb climate change, we do identify and reduce all unnecessary energy consumption – systematically and at all sites.
Identifying and implementing reduction potential
We have been recording, accounting for, and analysing all our transport-related carbon emissions since 2006 as part of our LOTOS (Logistics towards Sustainability) climate-protection programme, which we developed in cooperation with the Technical University of Hamburg and the German Federal Environment Ministry (BMU). The aims of the program are to continuously improve carbon accounting methodology, and to identify further potential for reduction. In 2013, we won the German Logistics Association (BVL) Sustainability Award for Logistics for our efforts, and its Austrian counterpart. We were able to further improve our own calculation method in the process: in 2013 and 2014, we first calculated our impact in accordance with the new CEN (Comité Européen de Normalisation) DIN EN 16258 standard, and had the results audited by external experts. As a member of the Clean Cargo Working Group, we also and additionally obtain more and more accurate data – and hence important – for the various seagoing vessel routes that we use. Based on these, we can compare the environmental performance of the different shipping companies.
Following the successful implementation of the LOTOS 2006 program to counter climate change, our Roadmap 2020 adopted at the end of 2015 builds on the goals already achieved, but also raises the bar. Given its clearly defined goal of a more eco-friendly setup of the entire logistics process by 2020, the Roadmap provides for a 40 % reduction of transport-related CO₂ emissions relative to 2006. The LOTOS target of a 30 % reduction in CO₂ emissions in absolute terms was already achieved in 2012. The absolute volume of transport-related CO₂ emissions was already down by more than 50 % in 2015 compared with 2006, partly due to changes in our sourcing structure.
In 2017, our transport-related CO₂ emissions were only reduced by around 21 % compared with the base year 2006. At 15.68 CO₂e per tonne-kilometre, the 2017 carbon footprint shows a year-on-year increase. This rise is mainly due to the fact that the use of high-emissions air freight transport had to be temporarily expanded due to a process change in Non Food’s procurement logistics.
By 2020, we plan to reduce emissions at the Gallin and Neumarkt warehousing sites by 15 %, and cardboard and paper consumption in B2B and B2C deliveries by 30 % per selling unit, all relative to 2014.
Using low-emission modes of transport
In modes of transportation, we rely on CO₂-efficient shipping: more than 90 % of our goods are transported by sea or waterway. From Bremerhaven, we use barges instead of trucks for the further transport of Non Food consumer goods incoming from overseas. We also use rail transport whenever and wherever possible. Optimised loading and utilisation of containers and trucks, and intelligent route management, are other measures we use to reduce CO₂ emissions.
Our desired use of low-emission means of transport wherever possible is being counteracted by temporarily necessary process adjustments in Non Food and the associated delays in purchasing. To avoid creating unnecessary pressure by shortening the production lead time for factories, there were more air freight transports in 2016 and 2017. However, we are currently working on reducing the share of air freight by optimizing the changed purchasing processes.
By outsourcing the supply of goods to our Tchibo shops to a service provider, we reduce kilometres and CO₂ emissions. We also avoid unnecessary interim storage and transport, and rely on direct delivery routes between roasting plants and distribution centres. In distribution, we systematically manage the volumes of goods towards the points of sale, e.g. through an innovative assembly-line system, thus ensuring greater efficiency with fewer emissions.
To generate additional options for climate protection in transport, we are testing new transport modes and routes, such as rail transport from China to Bremen, or long-truck transport between the Bremen and Gallin distribution centres. It has not yet been possible to establish a suitable rail link on this route. We have also developed a tool to take environmental aspects into account in tenders for transport services. This is currently also being tested.
Roasting plants: Increasing energy efficiency
Because roasting coffee consumes a great deal of energy, it is a focus of our energy and CO2 management. We wish to increase the energy efficiency at our roasting plants, so as to reduce CO₂ emissions.
As early as 2013, we introduced DIN ISO 50001 energy management at our two roasting plants in Hamburg and Berlin, which has reduced specific energy consumption by at least 1.5 % per year ever since. In 2016, the energy management system was successfully recertified in accordance with ISO 50001, and the roasting plants achieved year-on-year energy savings of 1.7 % in relation to the volume of roasted coffee produced. In 2017, Tchibo’s coffee-roasting plants in Berlin and Hamburg failed to achieve their energy savings target and recorded a 0.4 % increase in energy consumption per tonne of roasted coffee. The reasons for this are the requirements of the environmental authorities, which led to increases in the catalyst temperatures for several coffee roasters, and the commissioning of a new roaster, which consumed more energy during the break-in phase.
After analysing and evaluating the 2014 results in order to further optimise the processes, we converted the burners at the Berlin coffee-roasting plant in 2015, which saved heating gas in 2016. We also installed a new drum roaster at the Hamburg plant in late 2016, which – unlike conventional roasters – requires the use of only one burner instead of two. We switched off the energy management system that went into operation at the Berlin plant in 2016 in 2017 because the system did not meet our requirements. The development of completely new software is planned for 2018.
To gradually increase energy efficiency by around 5-10 % in absolute terms by 2020, Tchibo launched a major project in 2017: 50 % of the coffee roasters operated at the Hamburg plant will be replaced by much more energy-efficient machines. Overall, we have set ourselves the goal of reducing specific CO₂ emissions per tonne of roasted coffee by another 1.5 % by 2020.
Administrative offices, warehouses and Tchibo shops: electricity from renewable energy
Renewable energy and energy efficiency are a priority for us, and we strive for eco- and climate-conscious conduct in every respect. For example, for years our sites in Germany have been supplied with ok-power-certified electricity from 100 % renewable energy sources. This includes our two roasting plants in Hamburg and Berlin, the distribution centres in Gallin and Neumarkt, the company’s headquarters in Hamburg, and all Tchibo shops in Germany for which we buy the electricity ourselves. Since January 2016, we have sourced this electricity from the ‘green electricity’ provider Entega.
In 2017, we launched an energy-saving process at our distribution centre in Gallin, which we will continue. For example, we implemented an energy management system and insulated heating pipes in the outgoing goods area. The lighting was switched to LEDs in many areas. At the Neumarkt site, too, we began to switch to LED lighting at the end of 2017.
Because these energy efficiency measures were accompanied by an increase in storage capacity, the energy requirements and CO₂ emissions in the distribution centre remained at the previous year's level. The fact that the relative indicators nevertheless point to a reduction of CO₂ in relation to the building volume is due to the fact that we have now incorporated our warehouses in Isernhagen and Minden, and Senec in the Czech Republic into our energy management system, and that these locations don’t have a lot of automated conveyor technology. As part of our strategic development, we will redefine our targets and indicators in this area.