Sustainability

At HS1 Ltd, our aim is to be the world’s leading high-speed rail experience, providing the most sustainable option for transport across the UK and Europe. We endeavour to protect and reduce our impacts on the natural environment and on our local communities, and in turn achieve wide benefits.

We have launched a sustainability strategy to help us create a more sustainable and environmentally friendly future, and we will be working closely with our partners to deliver improvements to the rail industry and promote best practice. In turn, we hope to provide our customers with opportunities to make better environmental choices and enjoy more sustainable shopping and travel.

“Environmental and social sustainability is critical to the future success of our business and the transport industry more widely. At HS1 Ltd, our mission is to deliver a world-leading high-speed rail experience and through showcasing our credentials in this area we are able to reduce our impact on the environment, help drive more sustainable travel and ultimately provide more consumer choice.

“HS1 is the Green Gateway to Europe. Through our sustainability strategy we are helping consumers reduce their carbon footprint while still enjoying safe, fast and reliable travel at home and abroad. As the UK’s only high-speed railway, we already deliver phenomenal environmental benefits to the UK and beyond, offering a more environmentally friendly alternative to cars and planes. Our international high-speed line removes the equivalent of 60,000 short-haul flights, or 750,000 tonnes of CO2e, each year, whilst providing £7 million of UK environmental benefits as a result of people choosing to take the train rather than fly. Furthermore, domestic services on the line remove 6,000 lorries and cars from the roads every year.

“Our environmental and sustainability commitments will add to our continued success and allow us to lead the way in a green recovery for the transport sector post Covid-19.”

Dyan Crowther | CEO, HS1 Ltd

Our Priorities & Approach

We will be transparent in our achievements against the ambition set out in our sustainability strategy and will publish these in our annual report.

Our priority areas are:

Climate Change

It’s clear that making the right transport choice has a huge role to play in global carbon emissions and high-speed rail plays a vital role in offering low-emission transport for the future. Train travel is already 80-90% more carbon friendly than air travel, but we are still continuing to reduce our impacts on climate change at HS1 Ltd.

OUR TARGETS

  • Traction energy to be net zero-carbon impact by 2030 (Traction energy relates to the energy used to power the trains)
  • HS1 wider energy use to be net zero-carbon impact by 2030 (This relates to all other energy such as to power our buildings)

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Energy Use

Energy is a precious resource, so we will seek to minimise our energy use wherever possible. In parallel, we will work to secure sustainable and renewable energy sources for our transport, estates and vehicles.

OUR TARGETS

  • Reduce traction per passenger journey by 25% by 2030 (traction energy relates to the energy used to power the trains which will be normalised per passenger for comparison)
  • Reduce traction energy per train journey by 10% by 2030
  • Reduce non-traction energy drawn from the grid by 10% by 2030
  • Reduce non-traction energy consumption per sq ft in our estates by 10% by 2030

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Resource use & Waste

We recognise our role in using products and materials more efficiently and ensuring they’re recovered when we no longer need them. HS1 Ltd commissions major construction, refurbishment and track maintenance projects that create waste. To reduce our waste and be responsible, we have set out targets to be meet by 2022 and 2023.

OUR TARGETS

  • Zero non-hazardous waste to landfill from regular operations & projects by 2022
  • 90% recycling of operations and project wastes by 2023

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Social Impacts

Our role in the community is important to us as a responsible neighbour and as an inspiration for everyone that uses our services and facilities. To demonstrate our leadership in providing a positive contribution to the communities in and around our stations and lineside, we place a high value in contributing our time and expertise to enable those communities to flourish.

OUR TARGETS

  • Contribute 700 hours of staff time each year to local communities and charity activities related to HS1’s activities by the end of 2022
  • Report measurable social impacts delivered by end 2025

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Biodiversity

We manage a diverse estate, from central London to the Garden of England (Kent). We are committed to maintaining a healthy and diverse natural environment. Under the requirement of the Channel Tunnel Rail Act 1996 we have an obligation to protect and enhance the lineside habitat.

OUR TARGETS

  • The target for 2030 is to deliver a ‘Biodiversity Net Gain’ (BNG) based on the 2020 baseline pending the completion of the full survey in 2021 which will confirm if BNG2030 is achievable and if not, what we are able to achieve by 2030.

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Transparency

We will report the progress of our strategy to our investors, partners and stakeholders to demonstrate how we are progressing towards achieving our targets. To do this we will establish an appropriate ESG reporting scheme and framework. We will maintain compliance with all environmental regulatory requirements (and any initiatives we sign up to) and report against these in our annual reporting.

OUR TARGETS

  • To underpin all our sustainability targets we will have monitoring systems set up & in operation
  • We will ensure we are 100% compliant with relevant environmental regulatory requirements
  • We will report annually on our progress to inform investors, partners and stakeholders

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What have we achieved?

We’re already delivering on sustainability at HS1 Ltd, and we intend to enhance and grow this activity. We’ll be sharing some examples of work that we’ve already delivered on our website later this month and how it benefits the environment and communities around our estates.

Our full commitment

Our commitment to protecting the environment and improving sustainability on the HS1 rail network has been backed by our partners who we work very closely with.

We understand that each of our partners will have their own sustainability strategies which will focus on their specific impacts, but where there is cross over and alignment we will work together for greater gains. The collaboration will be overseen by the Sustainability Steering Group which will have senior representatives from all partner organisations.

Download full HS1 Sustainability Strategy