Last week I had the pleasure of interviewing Christopher Ong, Vice President Business Development, First Choice & GoGreen for DHL Asia Pacific , Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa. The express division has cut its emissions by 19%, an impressive achievement given the large size of DHL. Globally DHL employs around half a million people.
How has it achieved these savings?
Firstly the chairman identified that it was important for the company to reduce its emissions, as part of being a good corporate citizen.
Secondly, it set a carbon reduction target, of globally reducing emissions by 30% per kg delivered, by 2015.
Third it put in place a measurement and tracking system. Unlike many organisations which centralise their data collection for the purpose of tracking emissions, DHL developed a system where the data entry is decentralised system.
Fourth it got staff using the system. Initially it was hard to motivate staff to do this. However with strong management support, monthly data entry into the system is now the norm. Each month each facility fills in a on-line questionnaire, entering in information such as the litres of diesel used. This only takes a few minutes.
Fifth, graphs and reports from the system are printed out at each facility, and put on the facility noticeboard where they are prominent to staff and drivers.
Sixth, it has fostered competition, encouraged ideas that reduced energy consumption, and empowered staff to take actions to reduce their energy use. For example, in their facilities in Singapore DHL now practices “lights off at lunchtime”, an idea suggested by a staff member.
Chris highlighted the fact that saving energy saves money, and that the Global Financial Crisis has actually accelerated their savings. He said that their total savings to date of 19,000,000 kgs have come from lots of people each saving a few kgs each day. Financial savings so far total ten million euros. His advice to other organisations:
- Be able to measure your emissions accurately.
- Give power to the people on the ground. Give them the information they need – what their emissions are now, what they were, how much they have saved. The results can be very immediate, and this reinforces what more can be done.
DHL provide a inspiring example for other organisations to follow. This good news interview with Christopher Ong can be found at https://carbonetix.com.au/wwx/good-news-interviews.