Our progress

WPP’s carbon footprint

  CO2 emissions (tonnes)
2006 2007 2008 2008
        (renewable
energy
rated zero
emissions)
Office energy use 144,354 120,032 112,901 94,376
Air travel 1 81,733 92,269 89,500 89,500
Other (includes unmeasured
impacts, e.g. couriers
and taxis)

33,913

31,845

30,360

27,581
Total 260,000 244,146 232,761 211,457
1
Air travel data partially estimated.

WPP’s office energy use (megawatt hours)

  2006 2007 2008
Energy use 297,406 251,685 223,720

In 2008, we emitted 232,761 tonnes of CO2, a 10.5% reduction on our 2006 baseline level. Our main climate impact is from consumption of electricity and gas in our 2,400 offices and employee air travel. We add an additional 15% to our CO2 footprint to account for unmeasured impacts such as couriers and taxis. This year we invested in projects to improve office energy efficiency and to install videoconferencing units to reduce travel. We expect emissions reductions from these projects to be evident in our carbon footprint in 2009 and beyond.

In 2008, we used 223,720 megawatt hours of energy in our offices which resulted in emissions of 112,901 tonnes of CO2, a 22% reduction on our 2006 baseline. This was achieved despite a 14.5% increase in our property portfolio by floor space since 2006. We estimate that we have saved over £6 million through reductions in office energy use between 2006 and 2008. The above emissions calculations follow new UK government guidelines, which state that emissions from renewable energy should be calculated using the same conversion factors as conventional grid energy, rather than rated as zero emissions. If the renewable energy we purchase is rated as zero emissions, we have reduced CO2 emissions from office energy use by 35% since 2006.

We emitted 89,500 tonnes of CO2 from our air travel. We collect air travel data via an external provider, as part of our airline procurement process. We have detailed analysis covering our major cities relating to approx 70% of our journeys. We estimate the balance based on internal records.

In 2008, we offset 195,000 tonnes of CO2 through support for renewable energy projects.

We report our greenhouse gas emissions to the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), a collaboration of institutional investors and participate in the CDP’s Supply Chain Leadership Collaboration.

In 2008, we began producing detailed carbon footprints for our operating companies. We are distributing these to our climate champions and to company CEOs. This will encourage ownership of energy management and enable companies to assess their progress.