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Targets and performance

To meet the environmental policy commitments and improve Parliament's environmental performance, both Houses agreed the following targets (based on 2008/09 baselines):

  • To reduce absolute carbon emissions by 34% by 2020/21. 
  • To reduce water consumption by 50% by 2020/21.
  • To reduce the weight of waste generated by 30% by 2020/21.
  • To recycle 75% of waste generated by weight by 2020/21.

Our performance against these targets is below: 

• A 52% reduction in absolute carbon emissions equivalent to 10,444 tonnes
• A 61.1% reduction in water consumption equivalent to cubic metres 193,243m3
• A 63.7% reduction in the weight of waste generated equivalent to 1,279 tonnes
• A recycling rate of 63% compared to a recycling rate of in 2008/09 of 47%.

We continue to achieve a recycling and recovery rate of 100% with zero waste to landfill.

Parliament's baseline environmental performance data for 2008/09 was independently verified by external consultants as has annual end of year data.

Current Performance

Parliament monitors and reports information on its current environmental performance to the Management Boards of both Houses monthly, and both Houses subsequently publish this information in their respective Annual Reports.

Graphs showing performance in our target areas for the financial year 2021/22 are shown below. 

The carbon graph displays absolute carbon emissions with no adjustment for weather. The graphs for electricity and gas are corrected for weather and are a better indicator of our improvements in energy efficiency. Waste and recycling figures are based on weight generated and recycled.

Future Targets

Ambitious new targets are being set for a new campaign to reduce Parliament’s environmental sustainability impacts up to 2050 with intermediate targets for 2025 and 2035.

These targets will be published within our Strategic Vision for the Parliamentary Estate which is currently going through the approvals process.

Our new campaign will run to 2050 as this coincides with the UK’s commitment to reach net zero carbon. Our draft proposed targets include impacts such as carbon emissions from both energy and our supply chain, energy consumption, separate targets for both mains and borehole water, waste reduction, waste hierarchy, sustainable travel, circular economy, sustainable construction and biodiversity.