Even with projections for improving efficiency across moderate economic recovery in the future, our society is still emitting greenhouse gases (GHGs) at an unsustainable rate. Customers are looking for ways to curb their own emissions and they expect corporations to do the same. At Dell, we track our GHG emissions and set a high bar for improvement.

How We Report Emissions

We estimate our GHG emissions using the international Greenhouse Gas Protocol and the Environmental Protection Agency Climate Leaders Greenhouse Gas Inventory Guidance. In addition to reporting on this website and in our annual corporate social responsibility report, we report to the CDP (formerly the Carbon Disclosure Project), an independent nonprofit holding the world's largest database of primary corporate climate change information.

Our emissions fall into three categories: our own operations, the “upstream” contributions from our supply chain, and the “downstream” contributions such as those from the transportation and use of our products. Emissions from our own operations fall into Scope 1 and Scope 2 while both the upstream and downstream contributions are part of Scope 3.

From our own operations
  • Scope 1 emissions — Includes fuels burned for heating and cooking in our buildings, in backup generators, and in owned or leased fleet vehicles
  • Scope 2 emissions — Includes emissions associated with purchased electricity
  • Scope 3 — Includes emissions from the transport and distribution of materials and products within our supply chain and up to the point of sale
Scope 1 and 2 Emissions in FY16

In FY16, we continued to pursue opportunities to reduce Dell’s overall energy use, change our mix of purchased
power and drive efficiencies in the transport of materials within our supply chain. Overall, there was a 9 percent decrease in Scope 1 and 2 emissions.

Our total facility-based emissions in FY16 decreased by 16.3 percent from the adjusted FY13 base year. As in
previous years, we can attribute most of this decrease to energy efficiency improvements, business efficiency
improvements such as our flexible work solutions and Connected Workplace program, and an increase in the
percentage of renewable energy purchased over this three-year period.

The largest contributors to Dell’s facility-related GHG emissions are the emissions associated with purchased
electricity and municipal heat. These are classified as Scope 2 (indirect) emissions. In FY16, these indirect
emissions accounted for about 85 percent of our total facility-based emissions. Our FY16 Scope 2 emissions
decreased by 11.2 percent compared to FY15.

Our direct (Scope 1) facility emissions are much smaller and include those from the use of natural gas and
other fuels for heating and cooking, diesel fuel used to run backup generators, and small discharges of
hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) refrigerants from air conditioning equipment. Other Scope 1 emissions, which are not part of this goal, come from the use of Dell-owned or leased personal and service vehicles. Most of these vehicles are used for sales activities.

Because most of our facility-based emissions come from energy use, our GHG reduction strategy has two key
components: using energy more efficiently and increasing our purchase and use of renewably sourced energy.

Energy efficiency improvements remain the most cost-effective means of reducing our overall electricity use - and along with that, our GHG emissions. We reduced our total consumption of electricity from 674.8 million
kWh in FY15 to 652.7 in FY16. We also sourced 41.1 percent of our purchased electricity needs from renewably generated sources - an increase of 2.7 percent from FY15. This keeps us on track to meet our target of sourcing at least 50 percent of our energy from renewables by 2020.

Scope 3 Emissions in FY16

From FY15 to FY16, we had a 18.6 percent decrease in Scope 3 emissions from the transport and distribution
of select Dell products from our manufacturing facilities to distribution points around the globe. This decrease
in emissions resulted in part from fewer units being shipped globally. We also continued to make progress
transitioning to more efficient transportation options. Bulk planning of shipments, along with further increases
in our products’ packaging and palletization to save space, enabled us to better consolidate shipments for
fewer trips.

The net result leaves us with a 19.8 percent reduction in the emissions associated with the transportation of
laptop and desktop products since the FY13 baseline year. We are investigating how we might change this
goal to better encompass a full accounting of our supply chain emissions and means of affecting change
across our logistics.