Reporting on the State of Lime’s Climate Impacts
Andrew Savage, Head of Sustainability at Lime, authored this post
When we first made a commitment to set a science-based carbon target as a company back in 2019, we candidly didn’t know what it would mean for our business– only that it was the right thing to do.
We’d been in business just 3 years. We hadn’t completed our first company-wide carbon inventory. And we didn’t have a firm grasp beyond assumptions about the extent of our footprint. We just knew the science needed us to. And we knew it wasn’t worth being in business if we did more harm than good and we couldn't align with climate science.
A science-based target essentially says that we must all commit to reducing climate pollution to stave off the worst of global warming impacts by limiting warming to 1.5C aligned with the Paris Accord. At Lime, we believe in science.
This led us to quickly conduct a full carbon inventory of the business and seek and receive the industry’s only validated science-based target across all emissions scopes, including the emissions of our supply chain.
Coming out of the recent COP27 in Egypt, it’s clear with every passing climate convening or every passing day that this 1.5C goal remains harder and harder to attain.
It also means that those who can– the companies which can– must be even more ambitious. This is why, in addition to our validated science-based target, we committed to the even more ambitious goal of being a Net Zero business by 2030. This will mean a long-term commitment to transforming our business and seeking decarbonization across every aspect of our operations.
Aligned with that effort, we’ve produced our latest emissions inventory conducted by global sustainability consultancy, Anthesis. Among the highlights: we cut carbon emissions by 49.5% from our baseline year (2019). Our emissions hotspots remain the same: hardware, logistics and transportation, as well as other purchased goods and services. While reductions in each of these categories helped drive our nearly two-thirds reductions in emissions, they remain the focus of our future decarbonization work.
What’s most notable: These carbon savings have increased the carbon efficiency of each of our provided trips by 43%.
This improvement in efficiency is good for the climate, but it’s also good for our business. We’re now running a far better business than we were in 2019, with less waste, in our drive toward company profitability. This shows directly how sustainability and good economics go hand in hand.
Our pursuit of carbon reductions is helping us drive more carbon benefits in the cities we serve. A recent report by Fraunhofer ISI, a leading German research institute, found on average our e-scooter service saves 26.4g of carbon dioxide for each kilometer ridden and our e-bikes save 10.3g per kilometer.
And we’re just getting started on this decarbonization journey. We invite you to stay tuned here for more details, announcements, and initiatives on Lime’s path to Net Zero and creating a future of transportation that is shared, affordable and carbon-free.
NOTE: This article was updated on September 7, 2023, to include revised figures.