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Press release from CNW Group

Canadian Tire Releases Business Sustainability Results for the Fourth Quarter and Year End

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Canadian Tire Releases Business Sustainability Results for the Fourth Quarter and Year End09:00 EDT Thursday, March 15, 2012Company grows while energy and carbon footprint of operations shrinksAvoided over 4 times more waste in 2011TORONTO, March 15, 2012 /CNW/ - Canadian Tire Corporation, Limited (CTC, CTC.a) today released the results of its business sustainability strategy for the fourth quarter as well as the whole of the 2011 fiscal year. Now in its second year of reporting, Canadian Tire saw an impressive 19% increase in the number of sustainability initiatives completed and a quadrupling in avoided waste year-over-year.With an increase in the number and square footage of stores in the Canadian Tire family, the Corporation is making great strides in mitigating the energy and carbon footprinti associated with increased growth. While there are hundreds of business sustainability initiatives in place across multiple business lines and functions, one particularly successful outcome has been a remarkable increase in energy productivity. In the three years since the business sustainability strategy was launched, the energy and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with transporting product from suppliers to Canadian Tire stores has decreased by 9%, despite a more than 22% increase in tonne-kilometres of products shipped. Similarly, the energy and GHG emissions associated with operating its real estate have decreased by more than 9%, despite a 9% increase in square footage.Far beyond a 'green' initiative, Canadian Tire's business sustainability strategy centres around three key areas - products and packaging, transportation of products and buildings and operations. Profitably growing the business without increasing the net carbon footprint of the economy is one of Canadian Tire's business sustainability aspirationsii and the Company is making considerable progress towards this goal."Canadian Tire is one of the first companies to integrate business sustainability objectives into its overall operating plans and quarterly reporting, which is in large part why we're experiencing such significant progress," said Tyler Elm, Vice President, Business Sustainability, Canadian Tire Corporation. "Energy productivity and reduced emissions are a big part of that. As proof, we use about 18% less energy per square foot today to heat, light and cool our offices, distribution centres and stores compared to 2007. Similarly, we use 26% less energy today for every tonne-kilometres of product shipped compared to a few years ago. We remain committed to the goal of growing the business without growing the carbon footprint."The ongoing integration of sustainable practices into Canadian Tire's business operations resulted in the completion of 438 initiativesiii in 2011. Combined, these initiatives are forecasted to avoid more than $5.6 million in costs, 2,451 tonnes of waste and more than 6,900 tonnesiv of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions annually.  These results are the equivalent to the energy use and emissions from powering more than 1,080 Canadian homes.Q4 HighlightsIn the fourth quarter alone, Canadian Tire completed 73 initiatives that are forecasted to avoid more than $1.2 million in costs, 182 tonnes of waste and 1,667 tonnes of GHG emissions. Major initiatives in the fourth quarter included building re-design, product sourcing and transportation changes at several Distribution Centres and Canadian Tire Gas locations.Technology advancements at four Canadian Tire Distribution Centres were the top performing program of the quarter, successfully implementing two initiatives that are forecasted to annually avoid more than $753,000 in costs, 723 tonnes of GHG emissions and 73 tonnes of waste annually. Generating more than 95 million shipping labels a year, the Centres have reduced the size of their shipping labels and have replaced pick sheets, paper forms used to compile merchandise for store orders, with a state-of-the-art voice picking system. These two new operational processes are more efficient from both an economic and sustainability perspective.Forecasted to annually avoid more than $18,000 in costs and 15 tonnes of GHG emissions annually, 10 Canadian Tire Gas locations in Ontario have installed LED lighting in gas bar canopies, interiors, coolers and parking lots.2011 ReviewCanadian Tire continued the integration of business sustainability across multiple business areas in 2011. Highlights of the past year include:Linking employee compensation with successful sustainability initiatives.Developing and building the latest high-efficiency store design that is 75% more efficient than the previous high-efficiency stores, built as late as 2010. The new prototypical design will form the basis of Canadian Tire's new store construction efforts through to 2015.Rolling-out the Go Eco automotive program in all Quebec stores.For the first time, Canadian Tire started generating revenue from sustainability initiatives related to on-grid solar energy generation, some of which are expected to reoccur in future years.Retrofitting energy efficient lighting at Mark's and Canadian Tire Gas locations.Canadian Tire's inclusion on the STOXX Global ESG Leaders Index.Winning of multiple awards by individuals and departments related to business sustainability, including the naming of Tyler Elm to "Canada's Clean50."Contributed $18.5 million to community blue box and industry product stewardship and recycling programs.Progress made is reflected in the overall full-year results as follows:v Products &PackagingProductTransportationBuildings andOperationsTotalCompleted Initiatives17542221438Cost Avoidancevi ($)$3,567,635$143,654$1,962,781$5,674,070Energy use Avoidance (gigajoules)41,2274,80668,390114,423GHG emissions Avoidance (tonnes)2,9073383,6866,931Equivalent number of Canadian homespowered (annually)389456461,080Waste Avoidance (tonnes)2,374N/A762,450Equivalent household waste from thismany Canadian homes (annually)3,712N/A1193,831For further details, refer to CANADIAN TIRECanadian Tire Corporation, Limited (TSX: CTC.a) (TSX: CTC) is one of Canada's most-shopped general retailers and the country's largest sporting goods retailer, with more than 1,700 retail and gasoline outlets from coast-to-coast. Our primary retail business categories - Automotive, Living, Fixing, Sports, Playing and Apparel - are supported and strengthened by our Financial Services division, which offers such products and services as Canadian Tire Home Services, credit cards, retail deposits, in-store financing, product warranties, and insurance. Nearly 68,000 people are employed across the Canadian Tire enterprise, which was founded in 1922 and remains one of Canada's most recognized and trusted brands._____________________________________i To allow for meaningful comparison between 2007 and 2010 results and in accordance with the Greenhouse Protocol, the 2007 Baseline was recalculated to adjust for emission factor changes and add-in locations that were not reported in 2007. This recalculation caused a 4.3% decrease in the 2007 results published in 2011.ii Canadian Tire's business sustainability strategy has three aspirations: to profitably grow the business without increasing the net carbon footprint of the economy; eliminate unnecessary packaging while sending zero waste to landfills; and provide innovative products and services that meet customers' needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs.iii Initiatives vary in complexity and size from changes made to an individual retail product, a retrofit made to a fleet vehicle or the building of a new store. Project completion for these initiatives is defined by a) the commercial operation date for buildings and product transport projects, b) the approval date for operations and product projects. Projects are reported in the quarter they are completed, unless data is not available, in which case the completed project is reported in a future quarter provided it is in the same year of the project's complete date or the first quarter of the following year.iv Measured as carbon dioxide equivalents (C02-eq). Greenhouse gasses such as methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N20) are converted to their carbon dioxide equivalent based on their relative global warming potential (GWP).v As sustainability initiatives are part of an inherently dynamic process and as projects come to fruition, revisions to estimates are periodically made and the quarterly Performance Report is adjusted accordingly. At year-end, Emission factors and Global Warming potentials are reassessed to align with the company's carbon footprint and the quarterly Performance Report is consequently Avoidance refers to savings in comparison to what it would have been if Canadian Tire had not made the improvements. These values express a 12 month forecasted result from the date of each project's completion. Values beyond the first 12 months are not reported.     For further information: Sarah Van Lange, 416-322-2659, (m) 647-287-9582,