The Home Improvement division is comprised of Bunnings Australia and New Zealand (BANZ) and Bunnings United Kingdom and Ireland (BUKI).
Alignment of the Homebase sustainability program with Bunnings’ standards will be a major feature of the new financial year. This year’s report relates to BANZ only.
Bunnings defines sustainability as being actions that are collectively socially responsible, environmentally aware and economically viable. Bunnings is committed to integrating sustainability throughout its business operations, including the sourcing of product.
Long-term programs continued to be advanced, such as energy efficiency, where initiatives included the installation of solar photovoltaic systems at another four warehouses and the installation of specialised energy efficient LED lighting into all new stores and store upgrades. Sending less waste to landfill is a long-term ambition. Programs to reuse and recycle plain timber pallets continued during the year, together with initiatives to recycle batteries and cardboard packaging.
Since the Homebase acquisition in late February 2016, it has not been possible to implement the measurement systems in BUKI to enable reporting on the same terms as BANZ in this year’s Sustainability Report.
We continue to focus on our performance in four key areas across our business:
- Ensuring we maintain good support internally and within the wider community to grow our community involvement in a sincere, localised and meaningful manner.
- Maintaining strong processes to ensure product sourcing continues to meet or exceed the requirements of local and global standards.
- Maintaining and, where feasible, increasing our current levels of water conservation, waste reduction and recycling (on a like-for-like site basis), and finding new ways to reduce our reliance on grid-sourced energy, with a view to achieving further cost-effective reductions in our overall carbon footprint.
- Maintaining a positive safety performance trend as we continue to grow our business, increase our store network and employ more team members.
We are committed to supporting the communities in which we operate by contributing to local, regional and national causes, charities and organisations throughout Australia and New Zealand.
During the year, our stores helped raise and contribute more than $37 million through over 70,000 community activities. A wide variety of national and local community organisations were supported through a number of activities including fundraising sausage sizzles, hands-on projects, local fundraising initiatives and product contributions.
This included more than 22,000 activities in rural and regional communities, helping to raise and contribute over $9 million for local causes and community groups.
More than 3,300 sustainability-related activities were conducted, including more than 2,200 school visits and projects as part of our Schools Sustainability Program.
We continue to work closely with major not-for-profit groups including The Salvation Army, Rotary, Lions Australia, Men’s Shed, Scouts Australia, RSL, and Royal New Zealand Returned and Services Association, as well as many local charities.
We also worked closely with emergency services throughout the year. For the third consecutive year all Australian stores raised funds for local volunteer fire brigades and emergency services through the 'Aussie Day Weekend Fundraiser BBQs'.
On Saturday 23 January 2016, through the generous support of customers, volunteers and team members, more than $497,000 was raised nationally. New Zealand stores supported local emergency services during this time as part of Anniversary Weekends in the Auckland, Wellington and Nelson regions.
Throughout the year, team members worked collaboratively with a wide range of government stakeholders on a number of local awareness initiatives. This included working closely with local authorities to assist communities in high risk areas with emergency preparation and disaster response measures.
For the second year our stores in New South Wales supported the New South Wales' Rural Fire Service’s (RFS) 'Get Ready Weekend', assisting RFS volunteers to engage with residents on bushfire preparedness leading into bushfire season. Victorian stores also supported the Victorian Government’s Powerline Bushfire Safety Program for the third year, while stores in Queensland continued their support of the Queensland Government’s 'Get Ready' campaign, which aimed to educate residents on cyclone, flood and storm preparation.
In Western Australia, stores supported the Department of Fire and Emergency Services’ ‘Are you Bushfire Ready?’ campaign, and in South Australia stores supported the Country Fire Service’s (CFS) Bushfire Ready campaign by displaying information and having CFS volunteers in-store to talk to customers. In Tasmania, all stores displayed the Tasmania Fire Service’s ‘2015-16 Bushfire Survival Plan’ in the D.I.Y. area in the lead-up to and during the bushfire season.
Stores also supported the Victorian Country Fire Authority and New South Wales Fire and Rescue smoke alarm awareness campaigns in April and May respectively. Stores displayed information, ran D.I.Y. workshops and local brigades attended selected stores to talk to customers.
During asbestos awareness month in November 2015 our Australian stores supported a number of initiatives. The Asbestos Diseases Research Institute’s ‘Betty the Asbestos Education House’ was hosted at 15 stores in Queensland, with all Queensland stores also supporting the Queensland Department of Justice’s asbestos awareness campaign during this time. All New South Wales stores displayed New South Wales Government flyers in the D.I.Y. area, as well as displaying New South Wales Environmental Protection Authority information on safe asbestos disposal at the trade desks.
South Australian and Tasmanian stores supported asbestos awareness education campaigns throughout the year by providing information to customers on safe asbestos removal when renovating.
Ethical sourcing and product safety
During the year, we continued to work closely with our suppliers to strengthen sourcing practices, with 100 per cent of our direct sourced suppliers screened through our Ethical Sourcing Program.
Bunnings also continues to proactively engage with suppliers to ensure adherence to product safety standards. As part of this, Bunnings conducts regular product audits to ensure conformance with relevant mandatory standards, and in addition undertakes independent safety tests on selected product to confirm compliance to safety standards and customer expectations.
As part of our commitment to responsible timber procurement, Bunnings has been working closely with Merbau/Kwila decking supplier, PT Wijaya Sentosa, since 2012 on their journey to Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification.
In March 2016 PT Wijaya Sentosa, based in West Papua, became the first large scale Indonesian forest operation to achieve FSC Forest Management certification for Merbau/Kwila timber. Bunnings will begin to offer FSC certified Merbau/Kwila timber to New Zealand customers in late 2016.
We participated in an independent assessment of our timber importation due diligence process, which was conducted by the Federal Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry and WWF-Australia.
We are confident that more than 99 per cent of timber products are confirmed as originating from low-risk sources including plantation, verified legal, or certified responsibly sourced forests. Within that, more than 90 per cent of our total timber products are sourced from independently certified forests or sourced with demonstrated progress towards achieving independent certification, such as that provided by the Forest Stewardship Council and the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC).
Waste reduction and packaging
Bunnings is committed to integrating sustainability throughout its business operations, including sending less waste to landfill.
With a continued focus on recycling we decreased our waste to landfill intensity rate at 2.9 tonnes of landfill per $1 million of revenue, compared to 3.0 tonnes in the previous year.
During the year we continued our national program in Australia to reuse and recycle plain timber pallets, utilising the backload capacity of vehicles. The 173 participating stores reused over 53,000 timber pallets, diverting more than 1,300 tonnes from landfill. We also continued to engage with key suppliers in New South Wales and Queensland to pick up and reuse pine pallets.
We started a cardboard recycling trial at the Mt Isa store in Queensland, and also continued trials in Queensland stores to recycle plastic strapping though the Lytton Distribution Centre.
Alexandria Warehouse in New South Wales ran an e-waste recycling event with the City of Sydney for the second consecutive year during the World Environment Day weekend in June 2016. Over these two years, more than 29 tonnes of e-waste has been dropped off by customers for recycling.
Throughout the year, 10 Bunnings stores continued to participate in the Victorian Batteryback program, with more than 11,700 kilograms of household batteries collected since 2009. We also had nine Bunnings stores in metropolitan Brisbane take part in the Queensland Government’s Power Tool Batteryback Program, allowing customers to drop off power tool batteries for recycling.
In addition to this, Bunnings is committed to refurbishing buildings where possible as part of its ongoing expansion program. During the year, Petone Warehouse in New Zealand opened, which involved the conversion of a former New Zealand Post mail sorting facility.
We will actively seek similar recycling initiatives in the coming financial year.
We have been pursuing sustainability within our operations for more than two decades, and we remain committed to reducing our carbon footprint.
Following the installation of a new generation solar photovoltaic system at Alice Springs Warehouse in October 2014, four additional stores at Smithfield, Gympie, Ballina and Geraldton had 100 kilowatt solar photovoltaic systems installed throughout the year.
Each system is currently generating between 10 and 20 per cent of the store’s daily energy needs, with solar photovoltaic systems to be installed at more locations in the next financial year.
Bunnings continues to install energy efficient LED lighting to new stores and retrofit selected existing stores. Following trials at Cranbourne Warehouse and Bayswater Warehouse in Victoria to test new-age LED fittings in an older-store retrofit environment, an additional six existing stores had LED lighting installed.
During the year, Bathurst Warehouse and Orange Warehouse in New South Wales trialled climate adaptive comfort cooling and heating, a more energy efficient system which utilises natural air tempering.
This year there was a 6.9 per cent reduction in the number of injuries recorded and an 11.1 per cent reduction in the total recordable injury frequency rate, which was a pleasing result given the continued growth of our business.
Key initiatives launched during the year included the ‘See Something… Do Something’ campaign, which encourages leaders and the team to act in the moment, addressing any safety risks and acknowledging great safety practices.
Further training and forums for our forklift operators, continued focus on manual handling and training for our leaders on mental health have also been key programs that were implemented to support our vision that everyone goes home safe.
22.2total recordable injury frequency rate
1Restated due to maturation of data
- Drive long-term carbon footprint reduction through greater energy efficiency as well as further rollout of renewable energy systems.
- Provide more information and education and drive more product development to help customers make sustainable living choices.
- Continue to increase efforts to reduce supply chain resource waste and achieve greater packaging and transport efficiencies.
- Continue to work closely with suppliers to maintain ethical supply chains.
- Maintain positive safety performance improvement momentum.
GRI Reference: G4-12, G4-EN33, G4-DMA (Supplier Environmental Assessments)