Discussion of SBS programming for next year. Upfronts Tuesday 31 October.
- First Australian broadcaster to reach Net Zero on direct emissions (Scope 1 and 2).
- Sets ambitious 2045 target for supplier emissions (Scope 3).
- First Australian TV network to begin carbon measurement on shows including Insight, The Cook Up with Adam Liaw, and Going Places with Ernie Dingo.
Hybrid-funded national broadcaster SBS will use its 2024 Upfronts event in Sydney, held tomorrow at Sydney Town Hall, to showcase the steps it has taken to carve a clear leadership position within the Australian media on sustainability and an ambitious pathway towards Net Zero on all its emissions.
The broadcaster today announced it had 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
“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,” said James Taylor, SBS Managing Director.
“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. SBS 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.
“Now that we have tackled our direct emissions, our next focus is our supply chain,” said Taylor. “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 Insight, The 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.
“As a responsible purpose-driven public broadcaster, sustainability is at the heart of our strategy,” said Abigail Thomas, SBS Head of Sustainability. “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.”
“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,” said Adam Sadler, SBS Director of Media Sales.
“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.”
Background: SBS is a clear leader in sustainability:
- In FY21 SBS was among the first Australian broadcasters (along with the ABC) to begin carbon measurement of its operations. (See page 79 of SBS 2022 Annual Report)
- SBS was a foundational member of Sustainable Screens Australia which launched in early 2023 in Australia and is already using the carbon measurement tool on key shows.
- During 2022-2023 SBS developed a new overarching Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) framework to elevate key areas for the Corporation to have positive impact. (See page 108 of SBS 2023 Annual Report)
- In recent months SBS has also named Abigail Thomas as its new Head of Sustainability following a project role which has seen her lead SBS’s efforts to measuring and reducing SBS’s carbon footprint towards Net Zero through energy efficiencies, purchase of renewable energy, rigorous focus on supply chain vendors, and industry-wide partnerships.
** Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment and Water* https://www.dcceew.gov.au/energy/renewable/target-scheme#toc_0
**Net Zero is defined by the Science Based Targets Initiatives as a 90% reduction on baseline – https://sciencebasedtargets.org/resources/files/Net-Zero-Standard.pdf
This topic was automatically opened after 14 hours.
Out of the 2024 upfronts, SBS’s presentation is the most impressive so far.
Good news that NITV will launch a HD channel this December, and that SBS has retained the FIFA World Cup broadcast rights.
SBS on Demand is already one of the leading streaming platforms in the country, and is getting even better. I love the new opt-out function which allows you to skip ads featuring gambling, alcohol and fast food outlets.
Interesting that World on Fire season 2 is not mentioned in the list of international dramas that SBS will show in 2024, even though the broadcaster recently bought the rights to it.
All the announcements
Rather watch a video:
Also worth noting
Two new history documentaries are coming to SBS.
SBS has bought Ukrainian drama Those Who Stayed from distributor Red Arrow Studios International.
Screen Australia has announced three documentaries funded through the Commissioned Program and four projects through the Producer Program that will share in over $1.7 million of production funding.
Osher Günsberg: My Journey Beyond Pain: This one-hour follow-up to Osher Günsberg: A Matter of Life and Death for SBS follows presenter Osher Günsberg as he undertakes a personal investigation into his own pain journey and where he not only meets people living with chronic pain and explores new treatments, but also those who enjoy pain and seek it out. David Galloway (War on Waste) is writing/executive producing, with Ashley Davies (Could You Survive on the Breadline?) and Leonie Lowe (Osher Günsberg: A Matter of Life and Death) also attached as executive producers. My Journey Beyond Pain is funded in association with SBS. It is financed with support from Screen NSW. International sales will be managed by Escapade Media.
Skin in the Game: This 60-minute documentary for NITV follows Marlee Silva, a proud Gamilaroi and Dunghutti woman who grew up in the world of rugby league as the daughter of legendary footballer, Rod ‘Rocket’ Silva. Now, as an emerging sports commentator and media star, Marlee dives into the highly-contested world of rugby league and women’s sport in Australia to ask where we are heading as a nation. Skin in the Game is written and directed by Dena Curtis (A League of Her Own), with Marlee Silva (Tiddas 4 Tiddas), Laurie Critchley and Georgia Woodward of Magda’s Big National Health Check executive producing. It is financed in association with NITV, with support from Screen NSW and the Shark Island Institute.
Unofficial History: This three-part series for SBS cracks open a forgotten vault to reveal the stories and pictures of Australia as it went through a startling transformation in the 1970s. This documentary depicts a country that resisted change for so long and highlights what eventuated into the modern nation we now know – exploring the difficulties that underrepresented groups living in Australia experienced and the gains they made that now need to be protected. Unofficial History is from writer/director Chris Eley (Designing a Legacy), director Pauline Clague (When Colin Met Joyce), director Ili Baré (Australia’s Open) and producers Jo-anne McGowan (River, Mountain) and Rebecca Bennett (Ghosthunter). It is financed in association with SBS with support from the National Film Sound Archive (NFSA), Screen NSW and The Post Lounge. International sales will be managed by ABC Commercial and post, digital and visual effects are supported by Screen NSW.
SBS has bought 4-part true crime documentary The Flight Attendant Murders from distributor BossaNova.