Net Zero Carbon Reduction Plan

Sopra Steria is committed to achieving Net Zero emissions in line with the SBTi Net-Zero Standard


Sopra Steria are proud to be considered as early adopters of climate change standards since 2017 where we aligned our science-based targets well below 2oC which were validated by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi). Later in 2019 these targets were updated to be 1.5oC aligned.

In 2020, we adopted 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”, by taking the following actions:

  • Measure 100% of the organisation’s GHG emissions
  • Reduce GHG emissions as far as possible; and
  • Offset remaining emissions through projects that remove carbon from the atmosphere in the long term.

A Net Zero target date of 2028 was set under the UN Climate Neutral NOW programme.

In 2022, Sopra Steria committed to the SBTi Net-Zero Standard (hereafter referred to as ‘The Standard’) which has become the globally-accepted best practice standard for organisations setting Net Zero targets. The definition of Net Zero under The Standard will require Sopra Steria to strive towards achieving a 90% reduction in absolute emissions from a baseline measurement by no later than 2050. Consequently, Sopra Steria have proposed a revised Net Zero target achievement date of 2040. The SBTi have indicated that revised targets aligned with criteria set under The Standard, submitted by Sopra Steria Group in November 2022, will be validated around July 2023. As stipulated by SBTi, the baseline period can be no longer than 3 years prior to commitments. Therefore, we will change the baseline year from 2015 to 2019 upon validation by the SBTi in 2023.

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

Baseline and Current Emissions Footprint

In 2023, our total absolute Scope 1 and 2 (market-based emissions) decreased by 65.07%; and total Scope 3 emissions decreased by 26.1% compared with the baseline year of 2019. This has resulted in a total GHG emissions (i.e. Scope 1 + 2 on a market basis +3) reduction of 26.8% in 2023 versus 2019.

In 2023, Scope 2 (market based) emissions increased to 15tCO2(e) from zero in previous years. Historically, 100% of procured electricity for Sopra Steria Limited was from renewable sources backed by renewable guarantee of origin certificates (REGOs) and guarantee of origin (GO) certificates. During 2023, some landlords for buildings where Sopra Steria UK occupies office spaces, made a decision based on costs not to renew renewable electricity contracts with their energy suppliers. In addition, due to post-Brexit energy policies implemented by OFGEM Sopra Steria UK is no longer allowed to utilise GO certificates bought on our behalf by our European parent company, Sopra Steria Group. Therefore, this has caused the proportion of black electricity to increase in 2023 from zero to 42,668 kWh. 100% of the electricity consumed in office spaces where Sopra Steria UK is directly responsible for arranging the electricity supply with the energy supplier does come from renewable sources and is backed by REGO certificates.

Sopra Steria began to measure its total value chain emissions, in 2021, to begin a credible transition towards net zero which involves the calculation of Scope 1, 2 and all relevant Scope 3 emissions. This includes emissions associated with purchased goods and services (Scope 3 Category 1) which accounted for 88% of Sopra Steria’s total carbon footprint in 2023.

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

Emissions Reduction Targets

Sopra Steria will transition towards net zero emissions by the end of 2040 using a phased approach, ensuring that we commit to a steady decline in emissions using science-based targets to deliver positive outcomes through our climate action. Thereby, enabling Sopra Steria to support the Paris Agreement goals.

Near-Term Targets

  1. Sopra Steria commits to reduce absolute scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions by 54% by the end of 2030 from a 2019 base year.
  2. Sopra Steria also commits to reduce absolute scope 3 GHG emissions by 37.5% by the end of 2030 from a 2019 base year.

Long-Term Targets

  1. Sopra Steria commits to reduce absolute scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions by 90% by the end of 2040 from a 2019 base year.
  2. Sopra Steria also commits to reduce absolute scope 3 GHG emissions by 90% by the end of 2040 from a 2019 base year.

The Sopra Steria Group was one of the companies that road-tested the SBTi Net Zero Standard prior to its publication in late 2021.

Carbon Reduction Projects

Renewable Electricity

All electricity Sopra Steria consumes via supply contracts directly arranged by Sopra Steria with electricity suppliers, is backed by Renewable Energy Guarantees of Origin (REGO) certificates.

Energy Efficiency

Sopra Steria has continued to address energy efficiency, leading to a year-on-year reduction in our energy intensity (per full time employee) of 10.9% in 2023. Since the baseline year of 2019, our absolute energy footprint has decreased by 57%.

In 2023, Sopra Steria’s Energy Efficiency Working Group implemented the following energy efficiency initiatives:

  • In collaboration with the building maintenance contractor 36 current transformer (CT) sensors were installed at our UK headquarters at Three Cherry Trees (TCT) Lane in Hemel Hempstead. The CT sensors enable monitoring of electricity consumption, at a granular level, across key usage areas of the building. The data from the sensors is presented in a report which is discussed at monthly meetings, of the Energy Efficiency Working Group, where opportunities to reduce electricity wastage are identified through analysis of consumption trends and anomalies.
  • Further upgrades of lighting to energy efficient LEDs were completed in 2023 as part of the office refurbishment at Three Cherry Trees Lane in Hemel Hempstead. This is expected to contribute to an annual reduction of 88,920 kWh in electricity consumption and 17.20 tCO2(e).
  • As part of upgrades to gas heating controls at the Hemel Hempstead office boiler lock outs were installed, so when the outside air temperature is above 18oC the gas boilers used for heating the office shut down. This measure is expected to facilitate a 27,852 kWh reduction in gas consumption and 5.4 tCO2(e).

Business Travel and Internal Carbon Price

In the UK Sopra Steria applies an internal shadow carbon price to business travel. This facilitated a reduction of 57.6% in business travel emissions per full-time employee in the reporting year 2023 since the baseline year of 2019.

Waste Management

100% of waste from collections managed directly by Sopra Steria is diverted away from landfill.

Supply Chain Emissions

In 2023, supply chain emissions accounted for 88% of Sopra Steria’s full value chain GHG emissions.

Sopra Steria is actively collaborating with its supply chain and other organisations, developing a refined methodology for measuring purchased goods and services related emissions. This will entail increasing the use of Supplier Specific data to reflect performance of the individual suppliers with regards to GHG emissions reductions.

During FY2023, Sopra Steria issued a survey to UK suppliers representing 54% of our procurement spend as part of a Scope 3 Supply Chain pilot project. We worked with respondents to ascertain whether they had set GHG emissions reduction targets aligned with the SBTi. During 2024, through our sustainable procurement programme, we will be building on this pilot project to engage more suppliers in order to quantify our Scope 3 Supply Chain GHG emissions and progress against reduction targets. This methodology will help to reduce our reliance on estimating supply chain emissions through use of actual data based on emissions reported by suppliers as well as provide opportunities for effective supplier engagement to collaborate around innovation that leads to reducing emissions.

Carbon Offset Initiatives

In 2021 Sopra Steria purchased carbon removal offsets for GHG emissions from its offices, data centres and business travel that it did not avoid. Offsetting the GHG emissions from these sources in this way means that they had no net effect on the amount of GHGs in the atmosphere, making emissions from these sources net zero.

Since 2015 Sopra Steria had made its GHG emissions from offices, data centres and business travel carbon neutral by investing in projects that avoided future GHG emissions, particularly renewable energy projects in India.

In 2020, as part of its strategy for becoming net zero by 2028, Sopra Steria migrated its offsets for carbon neutral certification 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 that absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, and that do not simply replace trees in deforested areas.

Future Initiatives

Through the work of our Energy Efficiency Working Group, at Sopra Steria we will continue to collaborate with our building maintenance contractor to explore energy savings opportunities that will lead to increased energy efficiency and facilitate a further reduction in Scope 1 and 2 emissions.

In addition, through our Responsible Procurement Programme we will build on the work done as part of the Scope 3 Supply Chain Emissions Pilot Project and increase effective engagement across our supply chain to implement innovative initiatives that will facilitate a reduction in our Scope 3 emissions.

Board Approval

Sopra Steria Limited’s Board of Directors has approved this Net Zero Carbon Reduction Plan for the Financial Year ending on 31st December 2023.

Director’s Name: John Neilson (CEO)

Date: Monday, 13th May 2024

Download the full PDF version of the Net Zero Carbon Reduction Plan

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