We are dedicated to
Environmental Management

International Personal Finance plc commits to understand fully the impact of its activities and strives to reduce harmful effects on the environment. It aims to continuously improve management of resources in order to reduce carbon equivalent emissions in relation to output.

As a consumer financial services business, our direct impact on the environment is lower than that of other sectors, but we recognise that our day-to-day use of transport, energy and natural resources should be conducted in a way that creates the least possible harm to the environment.

We seek to minimise our impact on the environment where possible by regularly reviewing our direct and indirect impact on an annual or bi-annual basis. Detailed data is compiled by our finance teams in all our business units and aggregated and analysed by our sustainability function. Our environmental policy and strategies support this approach and the actions we take to minimise and reduce our environmental footprint include:

 •  regular reviews of our car fleet to achieve incremental reductions in fuel consumption and CO2 emissions;

 • route optimisation for our agents and field employees when they are visiting customers at home;

 • introducing new technology in particular mobile phone sales and collections apps for use by agents, thereby reducing paper usage and improving efficiency;

 • office consolidation in some of our European markets. 

Carbon footprint

We have reported on the most material carbon emissions sources required under the Companies Act 2006 (Strategic Report and Directors’Report) Regulations 2013. We have applied the Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Protocol Corporate Accounting and Reporting Standard to calculate our emissions data and have used emissions factors from the UK government’s GHG conversion factors1 and the current edition of the IEA emission factors for non-UK electricity. The emissions data covers all our offices. These sources fall within our Consolidated Financial Statements. Where available data is incomplete, we have extrapolated data.

Carbon emissions sources  
2018 2019 2020 % change in 2020
Scope 1 Gas 1,243 927 1,008 8.7%
Business travel by car 24,515 24,273

16,304

(32.8%)

Scope 2

 

 

 

Purchased electricity and district heating

3,244 3,236 2,665 

(17.7%)

         
Scope 1 & 2   29,002 28,437

19,976

(29.8%)
 

CO2e emissions by customer

0.013 0.013

0.011

(17.2%)

In 2020, our GHG emissions for scope 1 and 2 decreased by 29.8% compared with 2019. This significant change to the our carbon footprint was driven by a number of pandemic-related impacts.

People movement restrictions resulted in agents making fewer customer visits particularly during the first wave of the pandemic in Europe. In addition, we reduced business travel significantly, including a ban on all international travel from March, and moved to collaborating and hosting meetings and events virtually when they could not be conducted face to face. Together, these factors contributed to lower fuel consumption in 2020.

Most customers have since chosen to see their agents at home, and we expect agent fuel usage to increase towards more normalised levels in 2021. However, we plan to continue using technology for meetings, where appropriate, which will deliver further environmental and cost benefits.

The pandemic also forced the vast majority of employees to work remotely from home from mid-March which resulted in an 11.8% decrease in energy consumption in our offices compared with 2019. In the medium term, we expect we will have a smaller office footprint as employees work remotely more frequently. CO2 emissions per customer reduced by 17.2%. Our Group head office is located in the UK and energy use in this location was 0.7% as a percentage of overall Group GHG emissions.

Our carbon emissions report has been reviewed and verified by Be Sustainable Limited.

We aim to further improve our environmental data collection and management system by considering recommendations from this review. In 2021, we will also begin our journey to review business processes and develop our disclosure of climate-related risks and opportunities aligned to the TCFD framework.