How to succeed with renewable energy in your supply chain

How to start and how to succeed with renewable energy in your supply chain? The following is a simple 6 step approach from plan to action and how to start securing the first results.

You have probably noticed how #Scope 3 and #SupplyChain emissions are omnipresent in all sustainability talk these days. And for good reasons, the more insight we get to the corporate supply chain the better the real emissions are understood. CDP recently announced that supply chain emissions are 11.4 times higher than the average operational emissions. In some sectors emissions are even 28 times as high as operational emissions.

In any case the point is made – as ultimately responsible for their value chains the corporate citizens cannot ignore the environmental consequences of their suppliers’ activities. As we know by now, good sustainability stewardship makes good business sense and mitigates risk. Do you want to know more about Why taking responsibility for the supply chain is important, read my colleague Roger’s blog.

Accepting this fact, how does the corporate value chain owner get started in the face of a daunting task?

How to start with renewable energy in your supply chain

A preliminary before getting started, securing management backing up font is for several reasons an absolute critical success factor.

“Getting started on the journey is more important than getting it perfect from the start and better build first experiences with a smaller group.”

I am a firm believer in pragmatic and action-oriented approaches even to complex tasks. Getting started on the journey is more important than getting it perfect from the start. To this end; launch with a smaller sample of suppliers to get started on the learning curve. Programs invariably need to be adjusted even when preliminary stages have been thorough, better build first experiences with a smaller group.

6 steps to get renewable energy in your supply chain

The following is a simple 6 step approach based on our experiences from working with international corporates to increase renewable energy consumption in the supply chain.

  1. Do a mapping of your suppliers’ energy consumption related to their input to your value chain. Keep the survey as simple as possible, perfection is not required, do not fall in the trap of “perfect becoming the enemy of good”.

  2. Define priority suppliers to engage with first, based on their (non-renewable) energy consumption and strategic importance.

  3. Set targets for when you expect your suppliers to have done the switch to renewables. Make it an obligation or at least a firm expectation. “Nice to have” will rarely result in any meaningful shift.

  4. Circle back to top management to make sure your hierarchy stands behind the targets.

  5. Invite the selected suppliers to a launch event. Explain to the suppliers why it is important for them to be aligned with your sustainability policy. Present the tools you make available to them, (i.e. ECOHZ Supply Chain Portal). Be clear on targets and timeline!

  6. Provide timely and regular feedback to the program participants.

Finally, build on the experiences (and success!) of the first wave in the launch of the larger second group.

From plan to action

At ECOHZ we help corporates doing just that – getting started securing the first results. Making the shift easy and accessible to suppliers who most of the time have no knowledge about renewable energy markets, how they work and how to source renewable energy in a robust and well documented way.

To support these objectives ECOHZ developed a Supply Chain Platform that enables companies to engage their suppliers to switch to renewable energy in a few simple steps. Click here if you want a demo.

The platform, designed for efficient use and minimizing the hazzle and uncertainties for the suppliers, addresses two critical points; putting the solution in front of the suppliers, thus reducing implementation time while instilling confidence with the program.

Do reach out – I would love to dive deeper into the matter with you.

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