Creative transformation company WPP has pledged to reach net zero carbon emissions in its operations by 2025 and across its entire supply chain by 2030.
It aims to achieve its goal by ensuring all of the electricity it consumes will be 100% sourced from renewables by 2025.
Within WPP’s supply chain, which accounts for the majority of the company’s emissions, the two largest sources are the production of advertising content and most significantly, the placement of that content in media channels from television and press to radio and online.
The company, which claims to be the world’s largest buyer of advertising space, with more than $60 billion (£43bn) in media spending, says its “industry-first” commitment also includes a goal to reach net zero in the emissions generated by the placement of advertising for its clients.
Through GroupM, WPP’s media investment operation, the company aims to work with its media partners to develop industry-wide standards for measuring and eliminating the carbon emitted from the placement of advertising in the media.
It is consolidating its existing carbon calculators to allow a single view of emissions across channels and make them available to clients at scale.
Carbon data will be integrated into media vendor procurement requests and all media plans provided to clients will be net zero by the end of the decade.
CEO Mark Read said:“WPP is the world’s largest buyer of advertising space, managing more than $60 billion [£43bn] in media spend on behalf of our clients and the world’s largest producer of advertising content. So we have the opportunity to make a real difference.
“By including emissions from the placement of advertising in our net zero commitment – a first for our industry – we aim to raise the bar for the whole sector. Two-thirds of our top clients have committed to set their own science-based reduction targets and we can play an important role in helping them to meet those targets in their operations and across their supply chains.
“We look forward to working with all our partners – many of whom have already made great strides in this area – to develop standards that will benefit the industry, our clients and our wider communities.”