Walmart Canada launches major emissions reduction initiative

April 9, 2019

1 Min. Read

More than 200 of Walmart’s Canadian suppliers including Maple Leaf Foods, Unilever Canada and Agropur Cooperative are signed on to the project.
Removing one gigaton of emissions from global supply chains is equivalent to the reduction of the emissions from 211 million average passenger vehicles in a year. That’s more than five times the total number of vehicles registered in Canada in 2017.

MISSISSAUGA, ON, April 10, 2019 – Today Walmart Canada announced that it is joining Project Gigaton, a global Walmart effort to reduce emissions from global supply chains.

First launched by Walmart Inc. in the US in 2017, Project Gigaton seeks to reduce emissions by a gigaton – or one billion metric tonnes – by 2030. To date, more than 1,000 suppliers from 40 countries have formally signed on to the project.

More than 200 of Walmart’s Canadian suppliers – including Maple Leaf Foods, Unilever Canada, Agropur Cooperative and many more – have already made Project Gigaton commitments. Removing one gigaton of emissions from global value chains is equivalent to the reduction of the emissions from 211 million average passenger vehicles in a year. That’s more than five times the total number of vehicles registered in Canada in 2017.

The launch of Project Gigaton in Canada took place during Walmart’s annual Sustainability Milestone Summit in Bentonville, Arkansas with Doug McMillon, President and CEO, Walmart Inc. and Judith McKenna, President and CEO, Walmart International.

“At Walmart Canada, we have taken a number of steps to reduce our environmental footprint and enhance the sustainability of our operations, but there is more we can do,” said Lee Tappenden, President and CEO, Walmart Canada. “Through Project Gigaton, we will work in a collaborative fashion with suppliers, environmental groups and other key stakeholders in our collective pursuit of seeking to avoid one billion metric tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions from global value chains by 2030.”

About Project Gigaton’s Canadian Suppliers
Hundreds of suppliers worldwide have already signed on to Project Gigaton. In Canada, several suppliers have already committed to the Project, with new or existing emissions-reduction programs. Those suppliers include Maple Leaf Foods, Unilever Canada and Agropur, among many others.

“Maple Leaf Foods is on a sustainability journey with a goal of being the most sustainable protein company on earth,” said Michael McCain, President and CEO, Maple Leaf Foods. “Joining Walmart Canada’s Project Gigaton is a natural continuation of our sustainability commitment. Our existing emissions-reduction projects are complemented and enhanced by the resources provided by the initiative and we are proud to be part of this effort.”

“The Unilever Sustainable Living Plan sets an ambitious goal of halving the greenhouse gas impact of our products across their lifecycle and becoming carbon positive in our operations by 2030,” said Gary Wade, President Unilever Canada. “We are pleased to partner with Walmart Canada and contribute to the achievement of Project Gigaton as it aligns with Unilever’s sustainability objectives and recognizes the need for urgent action against climate change.”

“What sets us apart is our unique business model, based on cooperative values, and the sustainability-focused vision embraced by our members of a ‘Better Dairy. Better World.’ We are very pleased that Walmart Canada is tackling greenhouse gas emissions and we are proud to work together on this project, which is aligned with our corporate social responsibility program,” said Robert Coallier, CEO, Agropur.

About Project Gigaton
Project Gigaton is part of a series of Walmart sustainability initiatives, focused on addressing social and environmental issues in ways that help communities while also strengthening business. Walmart is the first retailer with a verified science-based target emissions-reduction plan. The company aims to reduce its absolute Scope 1 and 2 emissions by 18 percent by 2025. The retailer will also work to reduce CO2e, or carbon dioxide equivalent, emissions from upstream and downstream Scope 3 sources by one billion tonnes (a gigaton) between 2015 and 2030. To date, more than 1000 suppliers from 40 countries have formally signed on to Project Gigaton and suppliers have reported reducing over 93 million metric tonnes of emissions toward the one gigaton target in the first two years of the program.

In Canada, Walmart plans to work with suppliers to help achieve the corporate goal of removing a gigaton of GHG from the supply chain. Suppliers can customize their goals in one of several key areas including energy, waste packaging, agriculture, forestry and product use. Many of Walmart’s Canadian suppliers are already part of this exciting initiative as suppliers to Walmart US and this launch seeks to expand on this.

To help suppliers make commitments to emission reduction, or to establish emission reduction projects, Walmart globally has collaborated with NGOs, like World Wildlife Fund and Environmental Defense Fund, and additional like-minded organizations to create an emissions reduction toolkit. In this toolkit, Walmart highlights the business case for why suppliers should consider signing on to Project Gigaton.

About sustainability at Walmart Canada
Walmart Canada has made sustainability in its operations a key company priority. In addition to today’s announcement, Walmart Canada’s sustainability priorities include:

Achieving zero food waste across its operations by 2025
Diverting 87 per cent of its waste from landfill
Reducing plastic waste in its operations
Powering its private transportation fleet using 100 per cent alternative power resources by 2028
Using LED lights inside all its store locations, reducing GHG emissions by approximately 27,895 metric tonnes

About Walmart Canada
Walmart Canada operates a growing chain of 410 stores nationwide serving more than 1.2 million customers each day. Walmart Canada's flagship online store, Walmart.ca is visited by more than 750,000 customers daily. With more than 85,000 associates, Walmart Canada is one of Canada's largest employers and is ranked one of the country's top 10 most influential brands. Walmart Canada's extensive philanthropy program is focused on supporting Canadian families in need, and since 1994 Walmart Canada has raised and donated more than $350 million to Canadian charities. Additional information can be found at walmartcanada.ca, facebook.com/walmartcanada and at twitter.com/walmartcanada.