Sustainability Report 2015

Our performance

Greenhouse gas emissions

Through our materiality assessment, we identified the wider impacts of a changing climate and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions as our most significant environmental issue for our own performance, and through the advice we provide to our clients.

We believe businesses can become more resilient by identifying and adapting to climate change risks in their value chain. We are therefore leading the way in the development of methodologies for companies to use for this purpose. In FY15, we completed the three-phase climate resilience project for ERM, which involved: understanding how our offices have been impacted by weather events in recent years; developing recommendations to build resilience to these impacts in locations with a greater frequency of extreme weather events; and identifying opportunities for ERM to be involved in the transition to a lower carbon economy. In FY16, we will continue the ongoing development of our Climate Resilience Strategy as part of our longer-term business planning and approach to risk management.

Our emissions

We strive to grow our business while reducing our GHG emissions per employee. We set a target for FY15 to reduce our total emissions by 3 percent per full-time equivalent (FTE) employee from FY14. We saw a minor decrease of 1.20 percent in our emissions intensity, down from 5.10 tCO2e emissions per FTE down to 5.04 tCO2e emissions per FTE.

Our total GHG emissions in FY15 were 23,199 tCO2e, an decrease of 0.20 percent from 23,245 tCO2e in FY14 (which has been restated from 23,786 tCO2e reported previously due to methodology changes). Our largest source of GHG emissions is business travel, accounting for 57 percent of total emissions, followed by broader energy consumption, including electricity and fuel consumption in buildings in which we lease office space (associated with heating, ventilation and cooling systems, and shared and common areas of our offices) and direct office electricity and fuel consumption, accounting for 22 and 20 percent of total emissions, respectively.

Business travel

The nature of our business often requires our people to travel significant distances to undertake work for clients. Where possible, we will be focusing our efforts on using more environmentally-friendly modes of transport to client sites, and on continuing to reduce the amount of travel associated with internal meetings. For example, we continue to invest in technology that enables meetings to be conducted via video conferencing. In FY15, we generated 13,228 tCO2e emissions via business travel, a 5 percent increase from FY14. The majority of these emissions resulted from air travel, which accounts for 74 percent, or 9,793 tCO2e, of our business travel emissions

For more information on emissions by scope (1, 2 and 3), region and changes to data methodologies, see the supporting data section. Our reporting of scope 2 emissions has been updated to align with the latest GHG Protocol released in 2015. All data has been calculated using market-based approach, unless otherwise stated.