Carbon neutral by 2030: KONE sets ambitious greenhouse gas reduction target

The Finnish KONE Corporation, a global leader in the elevator and escalator industry, announced on 29 September that it has set science-based targets for significant reductions in its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by the year 2030. KONE’s targets are the most ambitious in the industry and have been validated against the latest climate science by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi). In another first for the industry, KONE has pledged to have carbon neutral operations by 2030.

KONE commits to a 50% cut in the emissions from its own operations (scope 1 and 2 emissions) by 2030, compared to a 2018 baseline. This target is in line with limiting global warming to 1.5°C, which is currently the most ambitious criteria for setting science-based targets. In addition, KONE targets a 40% reduction in the emissions related to its products’ materials and lifetime energy use (scope 3 emissions) over the same target period, relative to orders received.

Henrik Ehrnrooth, President and CEO, KONE Corporation said “Tackling climate change is the most important challenge of our time. At KONE, we have a key role in making urbanization more sustainable, and we believe that sustainable business practices are a requirement for long-term success. Together with our customers, partners and suppliers, we are now taking even stronger action and leading the way in our industry to create more sustainable urban environments,”

The Science Based Targets initiative identifies and promotes best practices for companies to set ambitious and meaningful, science-based GHG reduction targets, and independently assesses and approves these targets. Companies’ GHG emissions reduction targets are considered “science-based” if they are in line with what the latest climate science says is necessary to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement – to limit global warming to well-below 2°C and pursue efforts to limit warming to 1.5°C. The Science Based Targets is a joint initiative by CDP, the United Nations Global Compact, the World Resources Institute (WRI) and World Wildlife Fund (WWF). Around 1,000 companies have committed to taking science-based action and over 450 have validated targets.

To reach the 50% GHG emissions reduction in its own operations by 2030, KONE will cut its absolute emissions related to its vehicle fleet and facilities. To achieve this, KONE continues with a variety of actions, such as restructuring its vehicle fleet composition to incorporate more hybrid and electric vehicles as well as optimizing vehicle routing for maintenance visits. Additionally, KONE will increase the sourcing of renewable electricity at its facilities worldwide to 100% in 2030. On top of the ambitious emissions reduction targets, KONE will achieve carbon neutral operations by 2030, through offsetting the remaining emissions.

A clear majority of the emissions associated with KONE’s activities occur outside its immediate operations in the value chain. To achieve its product-related emissions reduction target of 40%, KONE will cut the emissions from product lifetime energy use and materials by further improving the energy efficiency and material circularity of its products.

KONE is taking strong actions across the whole supply chain. The company is working together with its suppliers to reduce the carbon footprint from operations and manufacturing, to increase the use of sustainable materials, and to limit the use of hazardous substances. In addition to measuring these impacts, KONE carries out stringent sustainability maturity assessments with its suppliers.

Being a leader in sustainability has long been a strategic target for KONE. Earlier this year, KONE received three outstanding recognitions in climate and sustainability performance: a place on CDP’s prestigious A List for Climate Change as the only elevator and escalator company, a position on the same organization’s CDP 2019 Supplier Engagement Leaderboard, and 32nd place on Corporate Knights’ 2020 Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World.

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