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Lion has pledged to become Australia’s first large-scale carbon-neutral brewer next year.

The company will compound its carbon reduction programme with certified carbon credits to offset its remaining organisational carbon footprint, and will have its carbon neutral status certified with Climate Active, which it describes as the most rigorous and credible carbon-neutral certification available.

According to Stuart Irvine, Lion’s CEO, Lion is on track to meet its target of 30 per cent carbon reduction by 2025 over its 2015 baseline thanks to its “whole brewery” carbon reduction approach, which incorporates energy efficiency, biogas usage, rooftop solar, renewable energy power purchase agreements (PPAs), and providing brewers grain to reduce livestock emissions.

This has cut Lion’s carbon footprint by 13 per cent, or around 13,000 tonnes, said Irvine.

“Now, we are taking our commitment to climate action to the next level. Next year, by resetting our emissions to neutral – and maintaining them at that level – we are sending a powerful signal to our people, supply chain, and of course our consumers, that we are deepening our collective responsibility to measure, manage, and reduce Lion’s emissions of our offices and manufacturing sites.

“We remain committed to reducing energy intensity in production over time, by constantly pushing the boundaries of efficiency and adopting industry-leading innovation. Speed is of the essence in stabilising the climate. That’s why, next year we’re effectively throwing a safety net over our remaining operational CO2 footprint - giving consumers the confidence that our Australasian beers will be produced in carbon neutral breweries,” he said.

Lion will offset 107,000 tonnes of carbon from next year, the equivalent of its remaining direct manufacturing emissions (for example, natural gas and electricity consumption at its breweries), and some indirect emissions linked to business activity such as travel.

Daniel Sheedy, director of Climate Active, said certification is a sign of climate leadership from businesses.

“Businesses can help drive change by undertaking Climate Active certification, signalling a commitment to an environmentally-sustainable future to consumers. Lion’s announcement that it will seek to be carbon neutral certified underlines the credibility of Climate Active, and will hopefully inspire other businesses to follow their lead and become carbon neutral certified,” he said.

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