Climate Protection


[GRI 302/103-1/2, 305/103-1/2] We are committed to reducing the impact of our business operations on the climate. Back in 2015, we specified in our Corporate Responsibility (CR) Policy that we aim to act in a climate friendly manner. We have set an ambitious climate target for ourselves in our Climate Protection Policy, adopted in 2018, in which we establish the framework for taking extensive action. Through these efforts, we are doing our part to help achieve the targets specified in the Paris Climate Agreement  and realise Sustainable Development Goal 13 “Climate action”  outlined in Agenda 2030 of the United Nations (UN).

Our approach

[GRI 302/103-2/3, 305/103-2/3]  ALDI North has set a clear climate target for itself: We undertake to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions throughout the Group by 40 per cent by 2021 compared to our 2015 levels. This target applies to all emissions that we ourselves cause in the course of our business activities (Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions). Our targets and measures have been compiled in our International Climate Protection Policy.

Our climate strategy has a long-term trajectory and two key focal points:

  • We seek to save energy, refrigerants and fuel through efficiency measures, and we are starting with those areas where consumption is greatest.
  • We aim to draw more electricity from renewable energy sources. This includes generating renewable electricity ourselves as well as purchasing it more and more frequently.

Our carbon footprint breaks down our greenhouse gas emissions by emission source and provides us with starting points for our climate protection measures. It is determined in accordance with the internationally recognised standard set by the Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Protocol and audited by a certified auditor.

Our most significant emission sources at a glance
  • Stores: Our stores use the most energy for refrigerating food, lighting the retail space and heating, which is typical in the retail industry.
  • Refrigeration: Cooling our products requires the use of refrigerants. Refrigerants can escape through leaks into the atmosphere and contribute to global warming.
  • Logistics: Around one eighth of our Group-wide greenhouse gas emissions are due to diesel consumption by trucks. Refer to “Mobility & logistics”.
  • Distribution centres: Lighting is responsible for a significant portion (up to 50 per cent) of the electricity consumed at our distribution centres.

To ensure that climate protection efforts are made consistently across operations, climate protection must become a business variable, which is why we will be setting an internal price per tonne of CO2 over the course of 2018. The plan is to apply this price to all emissions-relevant investment decisions. By taking these steps, we aim to make climate protection an integral part of our business processes.

Organisation & responsibilities

[GRI 302/103-2/3, 305/103-2/3] Climate protection entails collaboration among, and the expertise of, various departments. At the same time, we must guarantee our ability to respond rapidly and flexibly to new technological developments and policy frameworks. We therefore ensure that all departments, divisions and groups of experts involved in climate protection efforts (CR, Real Estate and Expansion, Refrigeration, Logistics) engage in regular dialogue with each other as part of an expert committee.

Guidelines & regulations

Our International Climate Protection Policy provides the framework for our climate protection measures for the entire Group. It was adopted in spring 2018.

In terms of legislation, the European Union’s (EU) regulation on fluorinated greenhouse gas emissions, which aims to cut emissions across the EU by 2030, is particularly relevant to us. Fluorinated greenhouse gas emissions are generated as part of our operations in particular due to refrigeration.

Progress & measures in 2017

[GRI 302/103-1/2, 305/103-1/2]

Climate strategy with a specific range of measures developed

We finished developing the ALDI North climate strategy in the 2017 reporting year. As part of the development process, we assessed climate protection projects that have already been carried out and explored potential new avenues for taking climate action. The analysis revealed a wide range of potential climate protection measures. Using individual criteria, the ALDI companies of a given country decide which of these measures is most suitable for reaching their country-specific climate targets

Stores: innovative technology lowers energy consumption

Lighting the retail space accounts for around one quarter of a store’s electricity consumption, which is why LED lighting technology has been installed at new stores in all countries since 2016. Such technology uses up to 50 per cent less electricity than our previous lighting system. In 2017, we began switching over the lighting systems for the retail space at our existing stores in most countries to LED, including the lighting used for the chiller cabinets and freezers. As LEDs generate less heat than other types of lighting, less electricity is needed for cooling purposes. At our updated stores, we are reducing the need for artificial lighting through windows that extend to the ground and take a needs-based approach to lighting our retail spaces outside of opening hours. We also use LED technology to light outdoor areas, parking lots, storerooms and side rooms.

Refrigeration represents another aspect for greater climate protection efforts at our stores. Frozen items are presented in freezer cabinets, including upright freezers at our new stores. For our stores in Germany, for example, we now only purchase freezer cabinets that use natural refrigerants. Thanks to regulated speed compressors and LED lighting, these freezers use up to 35 per cent less electricity than older models of the same size. Since 2017, most new and renovated stores in Germany have been using CO2 refrigeration technology for the chiller cabinets. The integrated CO2 systems in new buildings are also used for heating. They recover the heat from the refrigeration process, in addition to the heat from the exhaust air.

The new technology will be joined by a comprehensive energy data management system. We rolled out a system for all of our stores and distribution centres in Germany in 2017 which provides up-to-date data on energy consumption. We are using an energy management system at 40 stores in Spain to digitally record and centrally assess energy use among the main consumers. We will be introducing an energy management system in conformity with ISO 50001 in the Netherlands in 2018.

Refrigerants: less loss and climate-friendly alternatives

Reducing the refrigerant leak rate is an important element in our climate strategy. In addition to regular leakage tests, we completed the nationwide rollout of a digital monitoring system at our German locations in 2017. Data recording and evaluation enable the system to provide a rapid overview of all the cooling systems. We are currently working on the system’s nationwide rollout in France and the Netherlands.

At the same time, we have begun to increasingly replace the refrigerants used to date with climate-friendlier alternatives. In Germany, we are gradually switching over all (deep-)freezers to the natural refrigerant propane (R290), which has very low global warming potential. Our new CO2 cooling systems use CO2 as a refrigerant.

Between 2015 and 2017, we reduced emissions resulting from refrigerant losses by 16 per cent to around 99,000 tonnes of CO2 equivalents.

Distribution centres: efficient and needs-based lighting

We are planning to switch to LEDs in our distribution centres in Belgium and Germany; the changeover has already been made in Denmark. By the end of 2017, we had already switched over 27 out of 73 distribution centres to LED technology; two of the warehouses were closed at the end of 2017. We expect to save up to 3,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions in total every year as a result of the changeover. In addition, we are evaluating the use of needs-based lighting with motion detectors and light sensors.

Renewable energy: more green electricity by 2021

The roofs of many stores and distribution centres are equipped with photovoltaic systems. In 2017, the installed capacity of our systems already stood at more than 32,000 kWp (kilowatt peak) and produced more than 23,000 MWh of electricity. We avoided some 6,600 tonnes of CO2 emissions as a result. By 2021, we intend to install an additional nominal capacity of more than 50,000 kWp through more systems. Plans call for 120 systems at ALDI France alone. In 2018/19, another 18 systems will join the 40 others already installed at ALDI Belgium. At the end of 2017, ALDI Portugal already had 16 solar installations in place, and plans call for installing around 5,000 kWp of additional capacity there by 2021.

We currently use approximately 70 per cent of the generated electricity ourselves; the remainder is fed into the power grid. We want to increase the amount of energy for own use, which is why we are testing the use of storage technology that would enable us to use the generated electricity at a later time. To this end, ALDI North Germany has already equipped three pilot stores with an innovative ice storage system as part of the ESyCool green project. In February 2018, our project partner Viessmann received the German Innovation Award for Climate and the Environment (IKU) 2017 for this solution in the category for process innovations. We will decide on the system’s further rollout once the test phase is complete.

Despite additional photovoltaic systems, we will still draw the majority of our electricity from the grid in the years ahead. In order to meet our climate target, we are therefore currently planning to draw more green electricity by 2021. ALDI Netherlands began fully sourcing its electricity from green sources back in 2015. In 2017, the electricity was drawn entirely from wind power from Europe. As a result, we saved more than 40,000 tonnes of CO2 equivalents in 2017. We are currently developing strict criteria for the purchase of green electricity.

Targets & status

[GRI 302/103-2/3, 305/103-2/3] In our Climate Protection Policy, we have set ourselves the goal of reducing our greenhouse gas emissions by 40 per cent by 2021 compared to our 2015 levels. In the name of efficient monitoring, we regularly compile updates on the progress of projects and emission data for the entire Group. The CR department then assesses this information and analyses it within the expert committee established for that purpose. If a given measure does not produce the intended effect, new measures are then discussed. We regularly report to internal and external stakeholders on where we stand as a Group in our efforts to reach our climate target.

Our targets from the CR Programme

Field of action: resource conservation

Objective Status Target date Target value Target relevance

40 % reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2021 compared to the reference year 2015

new 2021 -40 % compared to 2015 ALDI North Group
Introduction of LED lighting in all new stores (interior and outdoor lighting), and review of conversion of existing stores in the portfolio and distribution centres to LED lighting   2019 (and ongoing) 100 % ALDI North Group
Increasing the share of stores equipped with photovoltaic systems   Ongoing Continuation and expansion ALDI North Group
Development of a concept for recording, analysing and reducing greenhouse gas emissions   2017 Concept ALDI North Group

Development of a concept for the introduction of an energy monitoring and management system

Target for Germany achieved 2017 Concept ALDI North Group
Nationwide ISO 50001 certification new 2018 100 % Netherlands
Increasing the own-use rate for the energy generated in-house by photovoltaic systems at stores through combination with concepts for integrated cooling and heating systems, and demand-led alignment of the photovoltaic systems   Ongoing Continuation and expansion Germany
Introduction of a nationwide, digitised monitoring system for cooling systems in order to reduce emissions through optimised leakage rates and/or more environmentally benign refrigerants   Ongoing 100 % Germany
Introduction of a nationwide, digitised monitoring system for cooling systems in order to reduce emissions through optimised leakage rates and/or more environmentally benign refrigerants   2017 100 % Netherlands
Gradual changeover of all plug-in chillers and freezers to the refrigerant propane (R290) with very low Global Warming Potential (GWP)   Ongoing 100 % Germany

 Target achieved   Ongoing process

Performance indicators

Direct energy consumption [GRI 302-1]

Direct energy consumption in buildings and logistics by country (in MWh)1

The biggest part of direct energy consumption is attributable to the use of natural gas for heat generation, and to diesel used as a fuel in logistics. Total consumption decreased slightly compared with 2016.

  2015 20162 2017  
Belgium/Luxembourg3 108,941 109,576 111,286
Denmark 20,962 20,692 19,766
Germany 386,112 402,431 397,002
France 149,429 143,479 147,787
Netherlands 84,156 86,055 80,058
Poland 12,896 14,905 16,639
Portugal 1,013 1,084 1,206
Spain 4,177 4,449 4,731
ALDI North Group 767,686 782,671 778,475

1 The data are partly based on estimates and extrapolations.
2 Late reporting information for the year 2016 resulted in partial amendments compared with the previous year’s report.
3 The information regarding the legally independent companies of the ALDI North Group in Belgium and Luxembourg has been combined for the purposes of a simplified presentation (refer to “Subject of the report”).

Direct energy consumption by source [GRI 302-1]

Direct energy consumption in buildings and logistics by energy source (in MWh)1

  2015 2016 2017
Natural gas 418,129 429,621 418,921
Heating oil 27,589 25,321 25,509
Biogas 154 89 67
Diesel (incl. diesel generators) 321,314 327,163 333,492
Petrol 66 26 18
Liquefied petroleum gas 434 451 466

1 The data are partly based on estimates and extrapolations

Indirect energy consumption [GRI 302-1]

Electricity and district heating consumption (in MWh)1

Electricity consumption at nearly 990 GWh is responsible for the biggest share of energy demand at our locations. It increased slightly year on year by around 6 per cent. The increase is due to a number of factors, including longer opening hours and the installation of additional chillers and baking ovens at stores.

  2015 20162 2017
  Total Electricity District heating Total Electricity District heating Total Electricity District heating
Belgium/Luxembourg3 88,411
89,559 89,559
101,354 101,354
Denmark 50,569
50,470 39,855 10,615
Germany 451,014 433,393
17,464 472,279 454,553 17,726
France 177,762

180,752 180,752
Netherlands 79,780 78,779 1,001
82,177 81,077
1,100 84,669 83,716 953
Poland 17,394
25,335 22,173 3,162
Portugal 14,113
17,720 17,720
Spain 79,694

89,029 89,029
ALDI North Group 958,737
1,021,608 989,152

1 The data are partly based on estimates and extrapolations.
2 Late reporting information for the year 2016 resulted in partial amendments compared with the previous year’s report.
3 The information regarding the legally independent companies of the ALDI North Group in Belgium and Luxembourg has been combined for the purposes of a simplified presentation (refer to “Subject of the report”).

Greenhouse gas emissions Scope 1 and 2 [GRI 305-1/2]

Greenhouse gas emissions Scope 1 and 2 (in tonnes of CO2 equivalents)

Greenhouse gas emissions were calculated on the basis of energy and fuel consumption, and refrigerant losses. The calculation is carried out in accordance with the requirements of the Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Protocol using the DEFRA emission factors or GEMIS for emissions from the sourcing of district heating. In accordance with the GHG Protocol, Scope 2 emissions from electricity consumption have been calculated separately by location-based and market-based emission factors. While the location-based method uses the factors for a certain geographical region (such as a country), a company’s individual electricity mix is used – wherever possible – for the market-based factors by way of the emissions actually generated by the energy producer. The calculation of location-based greenhouse gas emissions is based on the factors specified by the International Energy Agency (IEA).

  2015 2016 2017
  Scope 11 Scope 22
Scope 22
Scope 11 Scope 22, 3
Scope 22, 3
Scope 11 Scope 22
Scope 22
Belgium/Luxembourg4 42,096 17,782 15,781
40,328 18,656 13,246 38,639 22,674 14,859
Denmark 11,104 13,241 8,973
10,466 11,372 10,914 14,942 8,119 10,859
Germany 120,089 214,793 262,533
110,178 211,664 38,301 108,069
203,918 223,790
France 74,861 11,350 2,666
75,277 6,863 6,276 67,101 8,364 6,756
Netherlands 31,253 35,044 72 29,802 38,393 143 28,147 40,984 124
Poland 3,940 12,866 13,488
5,501 14,688 15,185 6,931 17,295 18,441
Portugal 1,529 3,964 6,180 2,817 3,793 4,334 5,728 5,695 5,080
Spain 12,239 19,467 30,218
12,267 20,096 26,774
10,980 25,718 29,854
ALDI North Group 297,111 328,507 339,911
286,636 325,525 115,173 280,537 332,767 309,763

1 Scope 1: Emissions from direct energy consumption in buildings, fuel consumption for logistics and refrigerant losses.
2 Scope 2: Emissions from the consumption of electricity and district heating, broken down by location- and market-based emissions.
3 Late reporting information for the year 2016 resulted in partial amendments compared with the previous year’s report.
The information regarding the legally independent companies of the ALDI North Group in Belgium and Luxembourg has been combined for the purposes of a simplified presentation (refer to “Subject of the report”).

Greenhouse gas emissions Scope 1 and 2 by sources 2016 & 2017 [GRI 305-1/2]

Total amount of greenhouse gas emissions for Scope 1 and 2 proportionately by source (in per cent, based on location-based emissions)

Installed capacity of photovoltaic systems

Installed capacity of photovoltaic systems (in kWp)

  2015 2016 2017
Belgien/Luxemburg1 438 1,095
Dänemark 35 45 45
Deutschland 11,526
19,537 26,708
Frankreich 273
Niederlande 149 149 209
Portugal 866 990 1,466
Spanien 732 804 850
Unternehmensgruppe 13,746

1 The information regarding the legally independent companies of the ALDI North Group in Belgium and Luxembourg has been combined for the purposes of a simplified presentation (refer to “Subject of the report”).

In-house electricity production [GRI 302-1]

Electricity generated from photovoltaic systems and in-house consumption (in MWh)

  2015 2016 2017  
  Electricity generated In-house consumption Electricity generated In-house consumption Electricity generated In-house consumption
Belgium/Luxembourg1 275 251 815
659 1,809 1,629
Denmark 10 10 47 47 41 29
Germany 7,498 4,575 13,445 8,752
18,261 11,967
France 125 102
Netherlands 150 115 156 124 156 123
Portugal 25 25 1,085
864 1,537 1,285
Spain 205 174 391 321 1,224 1,224
ALDI North Group 8,163 5,150 15,939
23,153 16,359

1 The information regarding the legally independent companies of the ALDI North Group in Belgium and Luxembourg has been combined for the purposes of a simplified presentation (refer to “Subject of the report”).

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