Energy & climate protection
We consistently use renewable energy, reduce our consumption and minimise emissions to contribute our share to the achievement of the Paris Agreement.
Since 2018, we have been calculating our carbon footprint annually on the basis of the Green House Gas Protocol in the mandatory scopes 1 and 2 and the optional scope 3. The previous goal of our climate strategy was to reduce our absolute emissions by 60 percent by 2025 compared to the base year 2018 and to offset the remaining unavoidable emissions by investing in certified climate protection projects. Our approach to this: avoid unnecessary emissions, reduce unavoidable emissions, and offset the remaining portion.
By 2020, we had already succeeded in reducing our emissions by around 60 percent to 2,423 metric tons of CO2e compared with 6,123 metric tons in 2018, thus achieving our target. For the calculation of our CO2e footprint in 2021, we therefore put our climate strategy to the test: We wanted to track our emissions even more closely, integrate new sites, and set ourselves ambitious targets for further reducing our carbon footprint.
Our new calculations have shown that in fiscal 2021 our business activities generated 1,415 metric tons of CO²e, which corresponds to 1.66 metric tons per employee. This means that we were able to continue reducing our emissions compared to 2020 despite the expansion of the scope of consolidation and the inclusion of additional emission categories.
In the future, we want to continue to do our part to keep the global temperature increase below 1.5°C compared to pre-industrial temperatures. Based on our latest calculations in 2022, we have reviewed and further developed our cross-site climate strategy for the German and Austrian companies of Immobilien Scout GmbH, Scout24 SE, FLOWFACT GmbH and Immoverkauf24 GmbH.
We have redefined the following goals:
1. Short-term: By 2025, we want to maintain a reduction of 60% of our absolute CO2e emissions compared to the base year 2018.
2. Long-term: By 2045, we want to reduce a total of 90% of our absolute CO2e emissions compared with the base year 2018.
To achieve our targets, we continue to follow the approach: avoid, reduce, compensate. As planned, we will start offsetting all remaining emissions in certified climate protection projects in 2025.
What we achieved so far
In 2021, Scout24 created new options to make it easier to view properties and conclude rental contracts, by introducing live online viewings and the digital rental contract. Online viewings not only make the process simpler for landlords and tenants, but they are also more environmentally friendly: If three prospective tenants each travel ten kilometres by car to an in-person viewing, that creates 9.5 kg of CO2e. If, instead, they each spend 20 minutes visiting a property virtually, that only produces 0.01 kg CO2e. As landlords say that it takes seven viewing appointments on average to find a new tenant, online viewings therefore mean a significant reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.
Since the climate balance sheet year 2021, we also report the greenhouse gas emissions caused by our marketplaces on the product side. Website hosting, our data transfers and the use of marketplaces via our users’ devices all contribute to this number.
We avoid waste as far as possible and ensure that waste is separated and disposed of in accordance with the law. For example, we have been partnering with AfB Social and Green IT for over 5 years. The company recycles and, where possible, reconditions discarded IT equipment at our Berlin and Munich sites. In some cases, we offer remanufactured equipment to our employees for private purchase.
In 2022, a total of 991 IT and mobile devices with a total weight of 2.3 tons were processed as part of the AfB partnership. AfB was able to remarket 67 percent of the devices after data destruction, hardware testing, repair, upgrading and cleaning. In this way, a saving of 71,594 tons of CO2e emissions was achieved.