British American Tobacco - BAT named a Financial Times 2023 climate change leader

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12 May 2023

BAT named a Financial Times 2023 climate change leader

BAT has been included for a third consecutive year in the FT Europe’s Climate Leaders  listing of companies making the most progress in tackling their carbon emissions.

The company was placed in the top 3% of over 4,000 companies evaluated. BAT has successfully reduced its absolute Scope 1 & 2 greenhouse gas emissions by 22% across 2021 and 2022, versus 2020. And, BAT has set ambitious targets to be carbon neutral in its direct operations by 2030, and Net Zero across its value chain by 2050 at the latest. This listing recognises BAT's commitment to building A Better Tomorrow™, by reducing the health impact of its business and putting sustainability front and centre.

Mike Nightingale, Chief Sustainability Officer at BAT, said:
“We are delighted to be named by the Financial Times in the top 3% of European companies for our commitment to and performance in tackling climate change. This listing reflects our continued work to address climate risks and opportunities across both our own operations and our wider value chain. We recognise it is essential that we transform our business away from cigarettes towards reduced risk alternatives and reduce our public health impact, and that we do this in a way that supports the long-term sustainability of our business, our planet and wider society. By 2030, we aim to achieve a 50% reduction in our Scope 1, 2 & 3 GHG emissions1, and to be Net Zero across our value chain by 2050 at the latest.”

The assessment, compiled by the Financial Times in partnership with Statista, used a stricter methodology this year, acknowledging growing scrutiny from consumers and regulators around environmental performance. For example, 20% of this year’s score looked at each company’s CDP Climate rating - BAT received an A rating from CDP in December 2022 - as well as their participation in the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) and disclosure of Scope 3 emissions. In 2022, the SBTi approved BAT’s target of a 50% reduction in Scope 1, 2 & 3 CO2e emissions by 2030 versus a 2020 baseline, commending its 1.5°C-aligned target, the most ambitious designation currently available. BAT also publicly reports on its Scope 3 emissions.

BAT is continuously seeking ways to enhance its commitment to and performance in addressing its environmental impacts, including climate change. In 2023, BAT launched its first Combined Annual & ESG Report, ahead of forthcoming requirements in several jurisdictions for companies to expand the scope and improve the quality of sustainability-related information they disclose. New and updated targets were also announced, including:

  • Achieving its 30% renewable energy target for 2025 two years early, in 2022 - resulting in a revised target of 50% renewable energy by 2030;
  • Increasing its initial target of a 15% reduction in waste from BAT’s operations by 2025, versus a 2017 baseline, to 25%;
  • Expanding the scope of BAT’s 100% reusable, recyclable or compostable packaging by 2025 commitment, beyond just plastic - to include all packaging materials; and
  • Setting a new target of zero conversion of natural ecosystems in its tobacco supply chain by 20252.

BAT is committed to its purpose of building A Better Tomorrow™ by reducing the health impact of its business through providing a range of enjoyable and less risky products*†. BAT’s sustainability commitment and achievements have received notable independent recognition. These include our presence in the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices for 21 consecutive years, and being the only tobacco company to be listed in the prestigious DJSI World Index in 2022; and, our CDP A-List status across Climate (A), Water (A-) and Forests (A-).

  1. Compared to 2020 baseline. Comprises 50% reduction in Scope 1 & 2 and 50% reduction in Scope 3 GHG emissions. Scope 3 emissions target includes purchased goods and services, upstream transportation and distribution, use of sold products and end-of-life treatment of sold products, which collectively comprised >90% of Scope 3 emissions in 2020.
  2. ‘Tobacco Supply Chain' refers to the tobacco supplied by our directly contracted farmers and those of our strategic third party suppliers, who participate in our annual Thrive assessment, representing over 80% of the tobacco purchased by volume in 2022.

* Based on the weight of evidence and assuming a complete switch from cigarette smoking. These products are not risk free and are addictive.
† Our vapour product Vuse (including Alto, Solo, Ciro and Vibe), and certain products, including Velo, Grizzly, Kodiak, and Camel Snus, which are sold in the U.S., are subject to FDA regulation and no reduced-risk claims will be made as to these products without agency clearance.