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Marks & Spencer Sets 2012 Carbon Neutral Goal

Marks & Spencer, which recently announced the opening of its first ‘eco-factory’ designed to be carbon neutral, has announced performance updates across all of the 100 sustainability commitments it has made in its sustainability “Plan A.”

By 2012, the company says it aims to, among a number of initiatives, become carbon neutral and send no waste to landfill.

The company says it has reduced energy related CO2 emissions from its stores and offices by 55,000 tons; supported farmers investing in small-scale renewable energy production; opened three pilot ‘eco-stores’; ordered 140 new aerodynamic trailers; completed a carbon footprint for its food business; and increased sales of organic food by 48 percent.

M&S says it saved 1402 tons of packaging between April 2007 and May 2008 and by 2012 the company aims to:

  • Reduce its non-glass product packaging by 25 percent by 2012;
  • Use only recyclable or compostable packaging by 2012;
  • Use more sustainable raw materials in its packaging; and
  • Use clear and honest labeling regarding its packaging recyclability for consumers.

Marks & Spencer is rolling out a 5p charge for plastic bags in its UK stores from the beginning of May to encourage customers to reduce the number of bags they use and to raise money for environmental projects.

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