Sunset over rolling hills


SSCL adopts the UN Climate Neutral Now definition of Net Zero as “the state where a balance between anthropogenic greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and removals is achieved”.  It will reach Net Zero defined in this way by taking the following actions:

  1. Measuring all of its GHG emissions
  2. Reducing its GHG emissions at source as far as possible; and
  3. Offsetting its remaining emissions through projects that remove carbon from the atmosphere in the long term.

The Net Zero Carbon Reduction Plan (CRP) lays out SSCL’s approach and annual progress towards its objective of achieving Net Zero emissions by 2028.

Baseline and Current Emissions Footprint

SSCL’s total absolute emissions (Scope 1, 2 and 3) declined by 5%, from 14,874 tCO2e (in the baseline year, 2017) to 14,195 tCO2e (in the reporting year, 2020).

The PDF version of SSCL’s Net Zero CRP provides a full breakdown of its emissions.

Emissions Reduction Targets

SSCL will implement a phased approach, through intermediate targets, to achieving Net Zero emissions by the end of 2028.   The Net Zero CRP document gives the milestone dates.

To support its progress to Net Zero, SSCL has adopted the following emissions carbon reduction targets, against a 2017 baseline:

  • 24% reduction in Scope 1+2 emissions per full-time employee by the end of 2020; and
  • 20% reduction in Business Travel emissions per full-time employee by the end of 2020.

We project that SSCL’s absolute GHG emissions will decrease to 11,837 tCO2e by 2025 (a reduction of 20%) and to zero by 2028 (a reduction of 100%).

Science-Based Targets

The Science-Based Targets (SBTs) that Sopra Steria Group has set apply to SSCL. The following SBTs are aligned to the 1.5 degree pathway and approved by the Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTi):

  • 42% reduction in Scope 1+2 (market-based emissions) by end of 2025. This is our 10-year SBT for all our Scope 1 and 2 emissions. Sopra Steria expects to achieve this target by procuring more renewable energy and through emissions reduction activities;
  • 85% reduction in Scope 1+2 (market-based emissions) by end of 2040. This is our 25-year SBT for all our Scope 1 and 2 emissions. Sopra Steria expects to achieve this target by procuring more renewable energy and through emissions reduction activities;
  • Ensure that the Group’s suppliers that account for at least 70% of its supply chain emissions control their GHG emissions by 2025; and
  • Ensure that 90% of the Group’s suppliers that account for at least 70% of its supply chain emissions have set GHG emissions reduction targets by 2025.

SBTs do not include carbon offsets.

The SBTi is currently developing a new standard for ‘Near Term’ (5 to 10 years) and ‘Long Term’ (to 2050) Net Zero, to be released in late 2021. Sopra Steria Group is one of the companies road-testing this standard.

We project that with carbon removal offsets, our GHG emissions will decrease to zero by 2028, a reduction of 100%.

Carbon Reduction Projects

SSCL maintains and continually improves its environmental management system, which is externally certified to the ISO 14001:2015 standard.

SSCL has completed or implemented the following environmental management measures and projects since the 2015 baseline year.

  • Renewable Electricity: By 2019 SSCL had raised to 100% the proportion of electricity consumed in the UK from renewable sources, reducing Scope 2 emissions to zero on a market basis.
  • Energy Efficiency: Measures include the replacement of fluorescent tubes with LED lighting; upgrade to more energy efficient electrical appliances; and extending the application of a shadow internal carbon price to office emissions. These measures have contributed to a 29% reduction in energy intensity (per full-time employee) in 2020 compared with the previous year.
  • Business Travel and Internal Carbon Price: SSCL applies an internal shadow carbon price to business travel. This facilitated a year-on-year reduction of 10% in business travel emissions per employee in Q1 of 2020 (pre-pandemic) against Q1 in 2019.
  • Waste Management: 100% of waste from collections managed directly by SSCL is diverted away from landfill. Over 137,000 items of single-use plastic food and drinks packaging eliminated from on-site canteens each year.
  • Sustainable Purchasing: To reduce the environmental impact of printing, SSCL goes beyond double-sided and “pull” printing to using “closed loop” paper made from recycled fibre. Closed loop paper requires no deforestation and uses less resources to manufacture than paper from virgin fibre: 83% less water; 72% less energy and 53% lower CO2
  • Carbon Offset Initiatives: Since 2017 SSCL has offset unavoided emissions from offices, business travel and data centres to become certified carbon neutral. In 2020 it migrated its offsets for offices to a new partner accredited by the United Nations Climate Neutral Now programme. This partner invests in projects that remove the primary GHG carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, particularly afforestation projects in Uruguay that create new land for trees, and that do not simply replace trees in deforested areas.  As a result, SSCL became Net Zero for office emissions while remaining carbon neutral for business travel.

Future Initiatives

SSCL will continue to extend its use of carbon removal offsets to all relevant sources of emissions, so that 100% of all emissions are Net Zero by 2028:

  • 2022: All operations under direct control
  • 2025: Certain indirect operations (e. waste, indirect fuel & energy, employee commuting and downstream leased assets) added
  • 2028: Indirect operations related to the supply chain (purchased goods and services) added.

The Carbon Reduction Plan for Net Zero 2028, incorporating the UN Climate Neutral Now initiative, is a key component of our wider Environmental Sustainability programme. This programme integrates our ISO14001 certified Environment System, efficient resource consumption, renewable energy, circular economy, sustainable supply chain and support for our clients with solutions and services in their transition to a Net Zero economy.

Our planned future initiatives will see investment in the installation of electric vehicle charging points and extending the upgrades to more energy efficient LED lighting.

During 2022, Sopra Steria Group and SSCL plans to embrace the new SBTi standard (to be released in late 2021) for ‘Near Term’ and ‘Long Term’ Net Zero Targets in addition to continuing with the UN Climate Neutral Now Net Zero Initiative.

Board Approval

Shared Services Connected Ltd’s Board of Directors has approved this Net Zero Carbon Reduction Plan for the Financial Year ending on 31st December 2020.

Read our plan here

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