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“Carbon Intelligence have been instrumental in working with us to achieve measurable and verifiable results that have exceeded expectations, surpassing all targets.”

– Lee Preston, Aviva Group Carbon and Utilities Manager

The programme has achieved a 12% reduction in energy consumption across the portfolio

saved since 2018
tonnes of carbon saved since 2018

Aviva's Sustainability Commitment

Climate-related risks pose a systemic threat to the financial stability of insurance companies, such as Aviva and it’s investors over the coming decades, therefore mitigating action must be taken.  At the end of last year Aviva committed to the UN Net Zero Asset Owners Alliance, with the aim of being a net zero carbon asset owner by 2050.

More widely, Aviva have committed to aligning their company goals to the SDGs and won the UN Foundation Leaders Award in 2018. Prior to aligning Aviva’s whole business to a below 1.5C long term temperature goal, ambitious energy and carbon reduction activities have always been applied to our own operations.

Whilst achieving  great success through community and renewable energy projects, Aviva recognise that there is always more that can be done in their own operations, which include owned and leased properties across the UK and Ireland, as well as properties in some of Aviva’s investment funds.


The Story So Far

In January 2018, Aviva brought Carbon Intelligence into their St Helens head offices in central London. This has always been a key site for Aviva, and it was noted that the energy consumption was higher compared to rest of the portfolio, so a target was set to reduce the energy consumption on site by 10%.

In the first four months of the programme, a significant number of opportunities were identified and implemented, including: optimised time schedules, improved BMS control strategies, optimised function improvements and compensated Air Handling Unit supply temperatures.

This programme surpassed the original 10% target and has resulted in 11% electricity savings and 24% natural gas savings, which equates to annualised savings of £230,000 and 720 tonnes of carbon.

The Roll-Out

Following the success of the programme at St Helens, the Smart Optimisation Programme was rolled-out at 12 additional sites, including sites in Norwich, Perth, Dublin and York. So far, this has realised an additional £400,000 worth of annualised energy savings, £100,000 worth of annualised life cycle cost savings and 980 tonnes of carbon savings each year.

Key opportunities implemented at these sites include:

  • The reduction in the speed of chilled water pumps at Perth, resulting in over £70,000 worth of energy savings each year.
  • The improvement in the operation of the boilers at a site in York, resulting in up to 50% savings in natural gas.
  • Over £300,000 worth of CAPEX opportunities identified.


COVID 19 Response

In 2020, the world faced an unprecedented challenge in COVID 19. With a wide-ranging portfolio of assets, Aviva’s response had to be tailored to each building. Considering building age, size, key workers on site etc. Through an effective management process and the support of the Smart Optimisation programme Aviva was able to achieve the following

  • Reduce electricity consumption by 41%
  • Reduce gas consumption by 60%
  • Save over £57,000 and 90tCO2e per week across the 12 assets
  • Implement an effective management programme to put staff safety as a priority, whilst having the data to verify the onsite conditions.




Key Benefits of the Programme


12% reduction in energy consumption across the portfolio


Over 1,700 tonnes of carbon saved each year


Up to £240,000 saved due to improved life cycle of plant


Reduced call outs and maintenance requirements


Industry recognition through awards


Saved over £57,000 and 90tCO2e per week in COVID lockdown

An Award-Winning Partnership

The success of the programme with Aviva was recognised in 2019 through the shortlisting and winning of several awards. This included The Energy Awards, IEMA Impact Awards, a Green World award. Lee Preston’s continued commitment to achieving Aviva’s sustainability targets was then recognised as he was awarded Energy Manager Award of the Year at the EMEX awards.

“The improved control means we now have the capability to respond to faults efficiently. This has led to less complaints from occupiers and has improved the overall operational efficiency and lifecycle of plant at several Aviva sites”

– Andrew Davis, Hard FM Specialist, Group Property & Facilities, Aviva

Beyond the Programme

Carbon Intelligence is also the sustainability partner for Aviva Investors and in conjunction with Aviva operations, the smart building programmes cover 19 sites saving over £1million each year and 2,700 tonnes of carbon. This programme now has the potential to save up to £5million if it is implemented across the portfolio.

Beyond this, Aviva have a market leading environmental and carbon management  programme, being the first carbon neutral international insurer in 2006, offsetting remaining operational carbon emissions on an annual basis.




This has included projects such as a first of its kind solar carports at both Norwich Horizon and the 2020 Perth ‘low-carbon hub’  featuring a 1.1MW solar carport, integrated with 1.8MWh of battery energy storage and 50EV charge points, forming the cornerstone of Aviva’s ambitious drive to take the office off grid by proving 26% of the sites annual energy demand.

Since 2015, Aviva’s investments have included £6billion in green assets; this comprises of £3.8billion in low-carbon infrastructure and £2.2billion in green bonds.

For 2019 Aviva Investors  assessed the performance of all of its 18 property funds through GRESB and, with the assistance of Carbon Intelligence, Aviva Investors achieved 32 green star ratings.