THE SMMT and the RMI have joined forces with the Carbon Trust in an attempt to help dealers be more green.
The project aims to help motor retailers reduce their carbon emissions by 50,000 tonnes each year and reduce their annual energy bills by more than £6m.
The Carbon Trust will visit 30 dealers to recognize opportunities to improve energy efficiency across the industry. All major brand dealerships of varying energy spends and occupying buildings of different ages will be visited in order to be representative of the industry as a whole.
A report will then be available to traders giving guidance on cutting energy use and saving money. It will also provide dealers with information on the business case for action as well as case study examples.
SMMT’s chief executive Paul Everitt, said: ‘This is an important step in cutting the sector’s environmental footprint and demonstrating our commitment to lifetime sustainability.
‘Vehicle manufacturers have focussed heavily on improving the efficiency of their production facilities and cutting the emissions of their products, making increasingly significant progress. This project will ensure the same attention is paid to retail sites, improving the overall environmental performance of the industry.’
‘Current carbon emissions from UK motor dealerships are around one million tonnes a year. We are confident that this carbon footprint could soon be reduced by at least five per cent through our partnership with SMMT and RMI’, said Keith Horgan, partnership development manager at the Carbon Trust.
‘We also expect to find many more opportunities for the retail motor sector to reduce its energy use in the longer term and estimate that dealers could ultimately save £25 million or more on their energy bills by becoming more energy efficient.’
Operations manager for the RMI Steve Latham, added: ‘These days our customers expect us to be energy efficient and to set a green and clean standard. Today we sell and promote many new cars with very efficient engines, producing lower CO2 emissions, therefore it is imperative we do everything possible to reduce energy consumption in our dealerships and reduce our costs in these difficult trading conditions.’
by JAMES BATCHELOR