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Achilles Experiences: Anglian Water reduces carbon footprint in its supply chain with Carbon Reduce

Case Studies

Achilles Experiences: Anglian Water reduces carbon footprint in its supply chain with Carbon Reduce

Anglian Water is the largest water and water recycling company in England and Wales by geographic area. It has over 4,000 employees and supplies water and water recycling services to more than six million domestic and business customers. Its purpose is to bring environmental and social prosperity to the region.

 Although its population has grown by 20% in the last 20 years, Anglian Water still provides the same amount of water today as it did in 1990 – almost 1.2 billion litres every day. It achieved this by minimizing leaks and encouraging more waterwise customers, priming it to continue supporting households for years to come.

Looking ahead, Anglian Water is working closely with Achilles to define and move forward on its decarbonisation goals to achieve operational Net Zero and a 70% reduction in capital carbon by 2030.


As the world’s population grows and the climate changes, Anglian Water faces increased challenges in its business. Taking a proactive approach in 2010, it went against industry norms and set itself a goal of halving carbon emissions in assets it built by 2015. With our help, it was .

‘We looked at emissions from extracting raw materials, transportation, fabrication and construction of infrastructure assets we build, as well as the operational carbon to run it all – to get a holistic view of our impact,’ explained David Riley, Head of Carbon Neutrality at Anglian Water.

As the threat of climate change continues to intensify, both regulators and global investors are mounting their demand for organisations to significantly cut their carbon emissions. Anglian Water is no different, and to ensure it can continue to meet the needs of its customers for decades to come, it set itself a goal of reaching Net Zero by 2030. To achieve this target, it needed to reduce emissions across its entire supply chain. It also needed to clearly demonstrate and report upon its activities to algin with its stakeholders.


After working with Achilles for procurement, Anglian Water joined our Carbon Reduce scheme. This programme helps the organisation to benchmark, monitor and reduce its operational emissions, and those of its suppliers.

David commented, ‘It is absolutely vital to get the supply chain involved. As a standalone organisation you can achieve so much but it’s only when you fully engage the supply chain you start to achieve much more significant reductions. Not only that, but we want to work with leading suppliers who are looking at their own emissions.’

Achilles guides Anglian Water through a two-stage approach to achieve its certification. The first is auditing Anglian Water’s Net Zero progress to ensure it is effective and meeting ISO standards. The second is gaining double-validation through an auditor in New Zealand to benchmark progress against worldwide standards. Throughout each stage, we work closely with Anglian Water to offer advice on how to meet the latest ISO standards needed for certification, giving the business confidence that it will achieve its intermediary goals. By aligning with ISO standards, we also continually adapt our advice at pace with changing guidance.

Anglian Water’s Net Zero Roadmap is focused on a three-step hierarchy: reducing energy consumption, using renewable energy, and carbon offsetting for residual emissions. Alongside these initiatives, Anglian Water are also continually working with suppliers to ensure they are meeting the latest ISO standards, which provides greater transparency during reporting.


Achilles has been a vital long-term partner for Anglian Water in overseeing an ongoing and meaningful reduction of emissions.

Making tangible decarbonisation progress. Anglian Water saw a 38% reduction in scope 1, 2 and mandatory scope 3 carbon emissions since their base year and a 63% reduction in capital carbon since 2010.

Opening new doors. Being verified against the latest ISO standards has given Anglian Water a marketable advantage. It is also rated within the leadership category (top 5.5%) on the CDP scores. As a result of its verification, it has been able to unlock green finance.

Leading by example. Anglian Water was one of just 29 companies to achieve Carbon Reduce accreditation for ten consecutive years. The firm submitted historical data dating back to 2007-2008.

Involving its supply chain. Part of Anglian Water’s success is that it asked suppliers to help to deliver carbon reductions and made this part of its procurement process. As a result, 46 of its main suppliers joined the Carbon Reduce programme – 40 of which are still actively involved in Carbon Reduce. This comprises engineering, construction, pumping, water treatment and solutions companies.

Being innovative. Through the raft of Achilles tools, we are constantly helping Anglian Water to both simplify and expand its reporting to cover the evolving ISO requirements, such as reporting on Scope 3 emissions.

Being collaborative. ‘It is really valuable to have expertise from the Achilles team on tap. I know that when we get in touch and ask a question – be it on renewable energy, certification, green energy, biogas or something else – that they will either go away and find the answer or find someone within the team who will be able to give an answer’, explains David.

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