MONTREAL, April 20, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — WSP Global Inc. (TSX: WSP) (“WSP” or the “Corporation”) is pleased to announce ambitious climate action through a commitment to achieve net zero emissions across its value chain by 2040. To support the achievement of its net zero commitment, the Corporation has set science-based greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction targets, which have been approved by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi).
“We are pleased to announce these commitments and join other organizations in leading the way on urgently tackling climate change,” stated Alexandre L’Heureux, WSP’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “Moreover, as the leading global environmental consulting firm, we are well positioned to advise our clients on their own transition to a low-carbon economy. Our Future Ready® approach is at the centre of this support for our clients in a rapidly changing world.”
Through this net zero commitment WSP will also join the Race to Zero, which brings together a coalition of leading net zero initiatives, with an objective to build momentum around the shift to a decarbonized economy ahead of COP26, the 26th United Nations Climate Change conference taking place later this year.
“We congratulate WSP on setting science-based targets consistent with limiting warming to 1.5°C, the most ambitious goal of the Paris Agreement,” said Heidi Huusko, Senior Manager, Environment and Climate at the United Nations Global Compact, one of the Science Based Targets initiative partners. “By aligning its goals with a 1.5°C future as a signatory of the Business Ambition for 1.5°C Campaign, WSP is taking action to prevent the most damaging effects of climate change.”
The GHG emissions reduction targets WSP is announcing today, which supersede the Corporation’s existing targets, increase the level of our ambition to align with the latest climate science.
WSP’s science-based GHG emissions reduction targets
WSP’s science-based GHG targets cover all scope 1 and 2 emissions, as well as all relevant scope 3 emissions1, as defined by the GHG Protocol Corporate Accounting and Reporting Standard. The targets are as follows: WSP commits to reduce absolute scope 1 and 2 market-based GHG emissions 60% by 2030 from a 2018 base year. WSP also commits to reduce absolute scope 3 GHG emissions 30% over the same timeframe.
In addition to its science-based targets, WSP is committing to source 100% renewable electricity by 2030, supporting its operational GHG reduction efforts.
Each WSP region is in the process of updating its GHG action plans to support achievement of these targets. Among the actions required to drive reductions in scope 1 and 2, WSP intends to continue to focus on increasing the energy efficiency of its facilities across the globe and reducing the emissions impact of its vehicle fleets. WSP’s scope 3 target will now include all categories relevant to the business (purchased goods and services, business travel, employee commuting, and other upstream emissions sources), as defined by the GHG Protocol2. Each WSP region will therefore also focus on emissions reductions associated with what we purchase, how we travel, and how we work outside the office.
GHG emissions associated with our design and advisory services
Given the nature of WSP’s services, we have the opportunity to make a meaningful contribution to reducing emissions from the built environment through our design and advisory services.
“We expect an increased focus on measuring and reducing emissions associated with infrastructure in coming years, and recognize it is an essential step in order to meet the goals of the Paris agreement,” explained Alexandre L’Heureux. “Today, WSP is pleased to commit to better understanding the GHG emissions associated with WSP’s advice and designs, and to collaborating further with our clients and partners to drive emissions reductions.”
“Helping our clients reduce their emissions remains a primary objective of our work, both for environmental reasons and to promote positive social impact, as communities benefit from resilient, low-carbon infrastructure,” added André-Martin Bouchard, WSP’s Global Director, Environment & Resources. “We believe that embedding our Future Ready® approach throughout our project delivery process has the potential to make a significant contribution to climate change mitigation.”
Progress on the Corporation’s targets will be reported through WSP’s annual Global Sustainability Report and CDP climate change questionnaire response.
As one of the world’s leading professional services firms, WSP provides engineering and design services to clients in the Transportation & Infrastructure, Property & Buildings, Environment, Power & Energy, Resources and Industry sectors, as well as offering strategic advisory services. WSP’s global experts include engineers, advisors, technicians, scientists, architects, planners, environmental specialists and surveyors, in addition to other design, program and construction management professionals. Our talented people are well positioned to deliver successful and sustainable projects, wherever clients need us. For more information about WSP, please visit www.wsp.com
Certain information contained herein may constitute “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of applicable Canadian securities laws and regulations. Forward-looking statements may include estimates, plans, objectives, commitments, expectations, opinions, forecasts, projections, guidance, outlook or other statements that are not statements of fact. Forward-looking statements can be identified by words such as: “anticipate,” “intend,” “plan,” “goal,” “seek,” “believe,” “project,” “estimate,” “expect,” “strategy,” “future,” “likely,” “may,” “should,” “will” and similar references to future periods. Forward-looking statements made by the Corporation in this press release are based on a number of assumptions believed by the Corporation to be reasonable as at the date hereof, including assumptions about general economic and political conditions; the state of the global economy and the economies of the regions in which the Corporation operates; the state of and access to global and local capital and credit markets; the anticipated impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Corporation’s businesses, operating results, cash flows and/or financial condition, including the effect of measures implemented as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Although WSP believes that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are reasonable, it can give no assurance that such expectations will prove to have been correct. These statements are subject to certain risks and uncertainties and may be based on assumptions that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated or implied in the forward-looking statements. WSP’s forward-looking statements are expressly qualified in their entirety by this cautionary statement. The complete version of the cautionary note regarding forward-looking statements as well as the relevant assumptions and risk factors, which, if realized, could cause the Corporation’s actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in forward-looking statements, are included in the Corporation’s Management’s Discussion and Analysis for the year ended December 31, 2020, which is available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com. The forward-looking statements contained in this press release are made as of the date hereof and WSP does not assume any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, unless expressly required by applicable securities laws.
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1Scope 1: Direct emissions including onsite fuel consumption such as natural gas for heating or fuel consumption in owned and leased vehicles, as well as emissions from refrigeration equipment; Scope 2: Indirect emissions associated with energy generated by others and purchased for use by offices such as grid electricity, district steam for heating, and chilled water for cooling. Scope 3: Other indirect emissions including purchased goods and services, business travel, employee commuting, and other relevant emissions categories.
2 The emissions categories associated with WSP’s updated scope 3 target are: purchased goods and services; capital goods; fuel-and-energy related activities; waste generated in operations; business travel; and employee commuting (which includes employee work-from-home emissions).