Our view on decarbonising transport

All IKEA products go through a journey – from the supplier to a distribution centre and/or a store, before they reach the homes of millions of people who love our products. This journey has an impact on our planet, and we are committed to becoming climate positive. We are rethinking everything – the materials we use, energy consumption in our operations, and how we can prolong our products' lives – and not the least, how our products are moved through our value chain.

Our aim is to become climate positive by 2030 while still growing the IKEA business. For transportation, this is translated into a target to reduce the carbon footprint from every transport that we do by an average of -70%. Big challenges also present big opportunities – we use our culture and values to take the lead and influence change. We have a very ambitious decarbonise agenda, and this leads us to think outside the box.

To decarbonise transportation, a diversified portfolio of solutions is needed. We are working to reduce, replace and rethink our transports.

Reduce is about increasing efficiencies in everything we do. We focus on reducing fuel consumption, increasing equipment utilisation, and optimising our transport design network. Today we are working together with some transport carriers to increase the trailer size. As a result, we can reduce both the amount of fuel used by decreasing the number of transports and saving cost.

By continually improving the filling rate and using bigger equipment of containers and trucks that we use to transport our products, we can decrease the number of shipments we need. For example, some years back, we introduced paper pallets that are thinner and lighter than wooden pallets. By using paper pallets in combination with larger loading units, it was possible to load three layers of products, instead of two, and reduce the number of trucksloads per year.

Replace is about replacing fossil fuels with alternatives. A largely influential component is switching road transportation to intermodal solutions, i.e., moving goods from the roads to rail, short sea, and barge. We are continuously increasing our share of intermodal solutions. Replacing diesel trucks with intermodal solutions can reduce our carbon emissions by an average of -50%.

We are also focusing on increasing the use of sustainable biofuels. We see sustainable biofuels as an opportunity to curb emissions here and now. The IKEA position on biofuels was created to guide us in this journey and secure the fuel's sustainability.  

Rethink is about integrating innovations, new technologies and collaborations into our value chain.

We cannot do it alone we need to collaborate and work together with like-minded partners, companies, and organisations. We need to work on short-mid and long-term solutions simultaneously and with the same sense of urgency.    

Since we started our decarbonise journey, we have achieved a lot.

The world is in a countdown mode to limit climate change effects, and there is a need to speed up.

Our approach is to do more of the good things we already do. Replicate, duplicate and innovate! We need to be well prepared for the journey ahead. And there is a need to accelerate and be faster. 

We have three focus areas designed to guide us towards our targets. These areas aim to provide a decarbonise compass on the direction and simplify the decision-making along the way.

  • Maximise efficiencies – There is still a big potential to reduce the carbon footprint with efficiency measures. We will reduce our energy consumption and be more efficient in everything we do.
  • Go fossil free – In line with the IKEA People & Planet Positive Strategy, we will aim to end our dependency on fossil fuels.  
  • Switch to zero-emission – We will switch to zero-emission technologies that are more energy and carbon-efficient and do not emit any air pollutants. We will apply a two-step approach, favouring the technology transition and securing renewable energy as a next step.  

For information on what we are doing, we have our Co-Creating a Sustainable Future catalogue, where you can find good examples and proof points. For information on our climate performance, please take a look at our IKEA Sustainability Report 2020.

Related links

Co-creating a sustainable future for the many people