Employers can lead reduction in commuter emissions

4 May 2021

Decarbonising the journeys of commuters in England will be vital if the country is to hit net-zero targets and businesses should take more responsibility for cutting their employees’ emissions, according to a new report produced by the CBI and KPMG.

Greener Miles: Delivering on a Net Zero Vision for Commuting, which is available — here, argues that, even with travel patterns evolving in the wake of the pandemic, commuting emissions will need to be radically reduced for the UK to achieve its environmental ambitions.  

It includes a series of recommendations led by a call for businesses to shoulder greater responsibility for ensuring their workers adopt greener travel habits by, for example, incentivising public transport use. 

Gradually, employers eager to reduce their Scope 3 emissions from commuting should look to deploy a mixture of carrot and stick interventions aimed at encouraging more uptake of public transport and discouraging private car use, the report suggests. This could include rewards for employees using public transport in the short-term and employers thinking strategically about links to networks as they plan for the future.

The CBI recommendations also include details for a “bold plan” for government support for operators to enable the UK to meet its ambition of 4000 new zero emission buses by the end of this Parliament.

CBI Chief UK Policy Director, Matthew Fell, said: “This summer, as more and more businesses nationwide begin to look beyond the challenges of Covid and plan a return to on-site work, firms have an unprecedented opportunity to work with government at all levels to provide their staff with a menu of low emissions travel options.”