We are committed to reducing our impact on the environment. In an effort to help reduce the number of single use plastic bags we issue and encourage greater use of reusable bags when shopping, we offer a range of bag options for our customers to purchase in store. When purchasing the 99 cent Landcare reusable bags 5 cents from the sale of each bag donated to support Coles' School Garden Grants Program
Coles bottled spring water
Coles is a member of the Australian Packaging Covenant, which sets sustainable packaging guidelines, such as reducing the weight of products and using recycled materials where possible.
We have made some good strides in this regard. Coles bottled spring water, produced by Mountain H2O, is now up to 40% lighter due to an improved bottling process which uses less fuel and water, and saves 187,000 kgs of plastic over a year.
Reducing energy use in stores
Most of the energy used by Coles is to run refrigeration and provide lighting and climate control for our stores. Although we’re a major energy consumer, our carbon emissions have been declining since 2009, due to a range of energy saving initiatives, which include installing:
- Night blinds on open refrigeration cases in stores
- Automated lighting controls to reduce the lighting used by stores outside of trading hours
- Anti-condensate heater controls on glass door freezers; and
- Voltage optimisation to limit the energy we take from the grid
These initiatives helped to contribute to our parent company, Wesfarmers Limited, receiving Ethical Investor magazine’s most sustainable company of the year award in 2011.
Coles will continue to focus on reducing energy consumption and is the first Australian supermarket retailer to develop a Greenstar rating tool with Green Building Australia in 2011. The tool will enable us to rate the sustainability of future supermarket developments.
Visit Wesfarmers Sustainability Report 2011 for more information about our energy efficiency programs.
Since 2008, we have partnered with Junior Landcare to offer Coles Junior Landcare Garden Grants. The grants, which provide funding up to $1000, help schools, kindergartens and community groups set up gardens in communities and school grounds, giving kids a fun and interactive opportunity to learn about nature and environmental sustainability.
Previous successful grant recipients have used the funding for a variety of garden projects, including vegetables, herbs, bush tucker, as well as water wise and multicultural gardens along with worm farm, composting and recycling projects.
Coles Junior Landcare Garden Grants are funded through the sale of reusable shopping bags sold at Coles, which encourages customers to bring their own shopping bags and minimise the use of plastic bags. To find out more about the wonderful projects we’ve funded, please visit www.juniorlandcare.com.au/case-studies