ARKANSAS, January 27 (Future Headlines)- In a groundbreaking announcement on Thursday, IKEA, the global furniture giant, declared its commitment to a monumental reduction in emissions, targeting a 50% cut by its 2030 financial year. This ambitious goal marks a substantial increase from the previous target of 15%, a milestone that IKEA had already surpassed in the fiscal year 2023. Inter IKEA, the entity responsible for manufacturing IKEA products and overseeing franchise operations, aspires to achieve a significant reduction in absolute greenhouse gas emissions across its entire value chain. This comprehensive approach encompasses emissions generated from raw material production, manufacturing processes, transportation, customers’ product usage, and the eventual disposal of IKEA products.

The 50% reduction target is measured against the 2016 financial year, representing a quantum leap in IKEA’s commitment to combating climate change. Notably, the prior target of 15%, established in 2017, was already outperformed in the fiscal year 2023. This remarkable progress underscores IKEA’s proactive approach to sustainability, reflecting a tangible impact on the reduction of carbon emissions across its operations.

Inter IKEA’s commitment to reducing emissions spans the entire lifecycle of its products. From sourcing raw materials to the ultimate disposal of goods, the company aims to implement sustainable practices. IKEA acknowledges the significant role played by its use of raw materials, such as wood, constituting nearly 46% of the company’s total emissions. This acknowledgment has prompted a strategic focus on transforming raw material sourcing and production processes to align with sustainability goals.

In the latest financial year, IKEA achieved a commendable 12% reduction in emissions, showcasing the effectiveness of its sustainability initiatives. This progress is attributed, in part, to the increasing adoption of fully renewable energy sources in more of its manufacturing facilities. A total of 142 additional factories, including both IKEA-owned and supplier facilities, transitioned to 100% renewable electricity. This brings the total number of such facilities to 408, underlining IKEA’s commitment to clean energy across its supply chain.

In specific terms, the estimated emissions for the 12 months through August 2023 amounted to 24.1 million tonnes of CO2 equivalent. This represents a notable reduction from the 27.2 million tonnes recorded in the 2022 fiscal year, showcasing a year-on-year decline of 22%. The 2023 emissions figure is a significant 22% lower than the baseline emissions recorded in 2016.

As part of its commitment to reducing emissions, IKEA has identified specific areas for improvement. Raw material use and, notably, the glue used in wood board materials are highlighted as key contributors to the company’s overall emissions. To address this, IKEA initiated the use of glue made from industrial corn starch in one of its wood board factories in Lithuania. This innovative step is aimed at replacing glue derived from petroleum. While the adoption of sustainable glue represents a positive move, IKEA acknowledges the current challenges in terms of availability and looks forward to scaling up this eco-friendly alternative. The glue used in wood board materials alone accounts for 5% of IKEA’s total emissions. By progressively implementing sustainable alternatives, IKEA aims to make a substantial impact on reducing its overall carbon footprint.

IKEA’s commitment to sustainability extends beyond its manufacturing processes to the impact of its products in customers’ homes. The company recognizes that the use phase of its products contributes significantly to its overall emissions profile. In the fiscal year 2023, emissions from product use at home saw a reduction, influenced by lower overall sales volumes in certain categories like lighting and appliances. Additionally, the increased sale of energy-efficient LED light bulbs played a role in curbing emissions during the product usage phase.

Looking beyond the immediate future, IKEA has set its sights on achieving net-zero emissions by 2050, underscoring a long-term commitment to sustainability. Importantly, this vision excludes the use of carbon offsets, emphasizing IKEA’s dedication to authentic emission reduction rather than relying on external mechanisms.

In November, IKEA submitted its new emission reduction targets to the Science Based Targets Initiative. This organization plays a pivotal role in setting standards for emissions reduction goals and evaluating the adequacy of companies’ plans. IKEA’s proactive engagement with this initiative highlights its commitment to transparent reporting and adherence to globally recognized sustainability standards.

Reporting by Emad Martin