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Virgin Money – banking on green gas to cut carbon

Virgin Money – Kensington

Using 100% renewable gas is Virgin Money’s latest step towards a net zero future.

Driving positive environmental and social impact is part of Virgin Money’s ambition to make a difference in banking and beyond. The company has used renewable electricity for eight years. When Virgin Money wanted to switch to green gas, finding a fully traceable product was key – so in 2021 they chose SSE Green Gas Plus for all of their UK stores and offices where they are responsible for the supply.

It’s really important for us that green gas comes with the certification of renewable guarantee because that flows through into the robustness of our reporting on our Scope 1 and 2 emissions.

Michael Weller
Head of Property and Procurement, Virgin Money

Key facts: Virgin Money

Operations: Banking

No. of employees: 7,500

The challenge: Reducing Scope 1 emissions across Virgin Money stores and offices.

The solution: 100% renewable SSE Green Gas Plus from sources like agricultural materials, food waste and wastewater – backed by Renewable Gas Guarantees of Origin (RGGOs) or Biomethane Certificates (BMCs) and independently verified by EcoAct, an Atos Company.

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With demand for action on climate change now mainstream, there’s been a major shift in the expectations of customers, investors and government bodies over the past few years.

Companies are required to be transparent about the impact that they have on the environment, and measure this using solid frameworks under initiatives like the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures.

Virgin Money reports its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in accordance with the GHG Protocol, which sets a global standard for how to measure, manage and report GHG emissions. Switching to SSE Green Gas Plus brings Virgin Money’s market-based emissions right down.

To meet our net zero ambitions, it’s critical that we work with suppliers who are on the same journey that we are and holding themselves to the same standards of decarbonising that we are.

Michael Weller
Head of Property and Procurement, Virgin Money

Green gas is a further step towards Virgin Money’s target of net zero carbon emissions by 2050. Both Virgin Money and SSE are committed to aligning their businesses with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

As well as helping Virgin Money cut carbon through green gas, SSE has set Science Based Targets to reduce its own emissions. So through SSE Energy Solutions, Virgin Money can be confident that the gas supplier link in its supply chain is taking action to become more sustainable, too.

Working with companies who keep striving to do business better and are committed to a greener economy helps us power the change needed to reach net zero. Our relationship with Virgin Money is an excellent example of leadership on lowering carbon.

Nikki Flanders
SSE Energy Customer Solutions Managing Director

A bank’s biggest environmental impact comes from the money that it lends and the associated Scope 3 emissions. By making real changes like switching to green gas, Virgin Money can show customers that their bank is playing its part in the journey to net zero, and in turn, inspire them to change their behaviours and cut carbon.

This is coupled with practical support to help customers take climate action through the way that Virgin Money lends to them, like greener mortgages, sustainability-linked business loans and net zero coaching for SMEs. Working together is vital to enable UK businesses to invest in a greener future for everyone.