SBS Upfront 2024: Network to showcase its sustainability pathway

Language Services Review

James Taylor: “This is a space where SBS can and should lead the industry”

SBS is set to showcase the steps it is taking to carve a clear leadership position within the Australian media on sustainability and an ambitious pathway towards Net Zero on all its emissions at its 2024 Upfronts event at Sydney Town Hall on Tuesday.

The broadcaster is set to announce it has achieved Net Zero on its direct emissions (covering Scope 1 and 2), and it is the first Australian TV network to confirm it is using Sustainable Screens Australia’s albert Toolkit to measure and reduce production emissions.

James Taylor, SBS managing director, said: “According to Nielsen’s Sustainability Rankings, in 2022 SBS ranked number one among media and telco brands when it came to social and environmental good.”

“This week, we are going even further and using our Upfronts to talk to the market about how SBS is the first Australian broadcaster to have achieved Net Zero on its direct emissions for Scopes 1 and 2.”


In a major step towards decarbonising its direct operations, SBS switched to 100% renewable energy in FY23. This was achieved through the Federal Government’s Large Scale Renewable Energy Target scheme with the purchase of Large-Scale Generation Certificates, which stimulate the renewable energy market. The network is also transitioning its fleet to hybrid and electric vehicles. These changes mean SBS has achieved Net Zero for its direct operations.

SBS has also analysed its supply chain, working with content, technology, and marketing partners to map their decarbonisation plans. Scenario modelling has enabled SBS to project an ambitious target to reach Net Zero by 2045 across all three scopes including its supply chain. SBS will also now begin the process of applying for endorsement of this Net Zero target by the Science Based Targets Initiative, recognised as the global standard for Net Zero commitments backed by science.

Taylor said: “Now that we have tackled our direct emissions, our next focus is our supply chain. I am very pleased that we are setting an ambitious date of 2045 for Net Zero on all emissions, including Scope 3. This is a space where SBS can and should lead the industry.”

“We’ll do this in collaboration with our production partners and I am pleased that SBS has already begun carbon measurement on key TV franchises such as InsightThe Cook Up with Adam Liaw, and Going Places with Ernie Dingo.”

A founding member of Sustainable Screens Australia, SBS has consistently led the sector on sustainability in Australia and was among the first broadcasters (along with the ABC) to begin measuring carbon emissions for its operations and supply chain in 2020-2021. SBS is now in the third year of measuring emissions from this baseline.

Abigail Thomas, SBS head of sustainability, said: “As a responsible purpose-driven public broadcaster, sustainability is at the heart of our strategy. SBS is taking an ambitious but credible approach to decarbonising its operations and supply chain, helping to lead the Australian broadcasting industry to tackle this key global challenge.”

Adam Sadler, SBS director of media sales, said: “Our media agency partners have been talking to us about sustainability for a number of years and indeed Nielsen’s consumer metrics show Australians believe and expect SBS to be a leader in this area.
“Today we are showing the industry and public that perception matches the reality and that SBS is leading the way for public and commercial broadcasters to set an ambitious Net Zero target.”

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