Alibaba Introduces Carbon Reduction Action at UN ECOSOC 2023 Partnership Forum

Alibaba Group’s Chief Marketing Officer Chris Tung delivered a keynote speech to introduce the company’s carbon reduction action model and call on more enterprises to jointly promote low-carbon consumption at a side event during the 2023 Partnership Forum at the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).

The online side event, “alleviating marine plastic pollution and helping low-carbon economy transformation”, was launched by UN Global Compat and Alibaba was one of the sponsors of the project.

“In the future, we will also have more investment. Through low-carbon goods, logistics and marketing, we will allow enterprises and partners to accelerate their carbon reduction progress to better meet consumer needs and accelerate the realization of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,” Tung said in the speech.

According to the report of the UN Environment Programme, plastic waste accounts for 85% of total marine waste, which is the most harmful and lasting marine waste. Some institutions estimate every minute, there is a whole garbage truck of plastic products is dumped into the ocean. Therefore, the UN Global Compact hopes to cultivate and expand commercial solutions recognized by the market to cope with the marine plastic crisis and accelerate the realization of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

The goal coincides with the original intention and direction of Alibaba‘s carbon reduction action, which was jointly launched by the tech giant and 19 other consumer enterprises in July last year. The initiative aims at providing consumers with a convenient, flexible, and independent way to participate in low-carbon activities relying on multi-enterprise collaborative innovation, digital technology capabilities, and diversified consumption situations.

After half a year’s practice, the member enterprises of the action have accumulated substantial experience in alternative material innovation, efficient and low-carbon logistics, and public awareness. In order to further promote the scale of low-carbon goods, Alibaba, along with British multinational consumer goods company Unilever’s China division, and China’s Institute of Standardization, jointly issued industry guidelines for the production of green and low-carbon liquid detergents.

In the field of package recycling, Alibaba and Master Kong, a Chinese instant noodle producer, have made recycled polyethylene terephthalate (rPET) from the waste materials produced by the food maker’s factory when producing beverage bottles, and then processed them into environment-friendly goods, such as clothing, bags and stationery. The first batch of 20,000 rPET multifunctional storage boxes listed on Alibaba‘s Taobao sold out as soon as they were listed.

As one of the earliest enterprises in China’s logistics industry to launch green actions, Alibaba‘s Cainiao has extensive experience in green recycling and green supply chains. During the Double 11 Shopping Festival in 2022, the recycling volume of express packaging from Cainiao reached 7.4 million units. In 2022, Cainiao cooperated with Yili, a Chinese dairy products producer, to develop a system that can record the carbon reduction data of goods, and provide various suggestions for optimizing carbon emissions.

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Last year, Alibaba released the first multi-scenario consumer carbon account system covering over 1 billion people in China, encouraging them to reduce carbon at will. According to the ESG report released by Alibaba, in fiscal year 2022, it reduced carbon by 619,944 tons through energy structure transformation, and 21.6% of its cloud arm’s electricity was clean and low-carbon energy.