Heathrow Airport, sustainable procurement phase one, UK

Creating a bespoke tool to decarbonise Heathrow Airport’s supply chain

To help Heathrow deliver their bold sustainability targets, we have worked to develop an innovative procurement tool that offers transparency in understanding supplier emissions and social value outcomes. The Heathrow 2.0 Balanced Scorecard is playing a vital role in driving improved results and achieving the airport’s sustainability goals.  

Key information

London, UK
Date started:
Completion date:
Client type:
Main services:
controls and performance, procurement, project management, digital

Understanding carbon emissions   

Heathrow Airport is committed to achieving net zero by 2050 and to making substantive changes to achieve that target before 2030. As recognised in its refreshed Heathrow 2.0 Sustainability Strategy, the airport needs to make critical sustainability progress across its supply chain to meet its net-zero commitments.   

Heathrow’s supply chain produces some 250,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions annually and is made up of more than 800 suppliers. To identify the source of these emissions and reduce them requires new methods of procurement, as well as assessment of the airport’s supply chain. The tool we have developed to help deliver on the ambitions of Heathrow's 2.0 Sustainability Strategy demonstrates to suppliers the required outcomes and how to report against targets.  

Getting sustainable procurement off the ground   

The Balanced Scorecard directly links supply-chain requirements and measurements to the client’s sustainability strategy. To do this, Heathrow established five ‘pillars’ as the basis of the Scorecard’s measurements: behaviours, carbon, community, social value and solutions improvements.

Based on these, we produced metrics that are able to quantify the sustainability outcomes of each pillar against the 2.0 Strategy. The project has benefited from our long-standing relationship with Heathrow, and we have engaged closely with its strategic suppliers to gather sustainability data to create the Scorecard baseline.  

Success beyond decarbonisation  

The Balanced Scorecard has already identified several successful measures suppliers are taking to improve their carbon footprint, such as switching to using renewably sourced energy and reaching 100 percent landfill avoidance. The tool has also been instrumental in identifying areas such as reducing and reporting suppliers’ emissions from their own supply chain.

Crucially, the tool goes beyond decarbonisation, driving progress on wider social value, including local community impacts and employee diversity and inclusion. It also highlights how Heathrow’s spending is benefiting national and local SMEs, embedding sustainability beyond its immediate supply chain.  

Paul Doherty, Procurement Director, Heathrow Airport Limited, said:

The construct of the Balanced Scorecard, with the support of Turner & Townsend, has grown and developed to articulate more detailed sustainable procurement aims and guidance for our supply chain partners. Turner & Townsend continue to play a key role as we move towards converting those partner commitments into performance indicators so we can progress Heathrow 2.0 strategy into delivery.

For further information contact:

Andrew MacGregor
Associate Director