Earth Day: on our way to another world

By ENGIE - 22 April 2021 - 09:23

Earth Day is the perfect opportunity to underline what we believe in: the urgency of changing and transforming our activities in favour of a carbon-neutral world, with deep respect for the elements that are essential to life: the air, sky, land and water. 


A world with a positive impact for people and the earth is a reality. Such is the conviction shared between the Group employees: the energy transition is the focus of our expertise and our passion on a daily basis, and is reflected by the invention of technologies that convert natural elements into energy that can be useful for people. 



ENGIE takes action for the air and the climate

Between 2012 and 2020, we have reduced our CO2 equivalent emissions for energy production by more than half. Since 2015, we have integrated our corporate social responsibility policy into the heart of our business model. As such, our emission trajectory is in line with the Paris Agreement to not exceed +2°C (SBT certification). We are committed to actively playing a part in a more carbon-free energy system, in closer proximity with our customers and more environmentally-friendly.

Since 2020, this outlook has formed our purpose which is embedded in our articles of association, and which guides all of our actions and decisions, be it for ourselves, our customers or our partners, ultimately contributing to a more protected planet.


And our commitment is ongoing 

  • In 2020, 15% of our preferred suppliers were SBT compliant or certified, and this figure will increase to 100% by 2030. 
  • In 2020, 31% of our energy mix was made up of renewable energies. Our goal is to reach 58% by 2030.


ENGIE’s 5 figures for the Earth


ENGIE takes action for nature and land

Since 2012, the Group has adopted a cross-functional strategy rooted in the three letters “ARC”, which stand for Avoid, Reduce and Compensate, and which is closely carried over to our activities on the field. We are committed alongside organisations such as act4nature and UNESCO in order to implement action plans that are in line with local issues and in consultation with stakeholders.

As early as 2010, the Group had set itself the objective of establishing a biodiversity protection action plan for each of its priority sites. The goal is to tackle the identified local issues and to collaborate with the stakeholders.

Since February 2019, ENGIE is committed to assessing the potential impact of its new projects on sites listed as UNESCO world heritage (natural or mixed) and to avoid developing projects that could have negative impacts. 


And our commitment is ongoing

  • In 2020, 100% of our industrial sites with high environmental challenges (i.e. approximately 200 sites) are covered by an environmental action plan jointly established with local stakeholders.
  • Our goal is to systematically implement an environmental action plan on 100% of the Group’s major projects and on all of our industrial sites (approximately 600 sites) by 2030. 
  • By the same date: 100% of our industrial activities will benefit from an ecological site management plan (a grounds maintenance management that is more environmentally-friendly, without the use of chemical products).



In France and the United States: our commitments to biodiversity

In France, we are carrying out impact studies from the onset of the development phase of our projects in regard to local flora and fauna. According to the results, actions are implemented in order to minimise the environmental footprint of the projects. For example, our solar farms can be used for agriculture, livestock farming or replanting local species.


In the United States, since 2016, ENGIE US Solar has been integrating vegetation to ground mounted solar farms from the onset of their design. The goal is to create an ecosystem that draws in pollinators by using a mix of grasses and flowering plants that are native to the region. These natural habitats protect the pollinators’ food chain. According to local conditions, a site reaches maturity within one to three years. Today, this represents almost 300 ha of vegetation, with an installed capacity of 127 MW. 100% of ENGIE Distributed Renewables solar farms, which are present across 14 states, benefit from this positive practice. Not only does this technique have positive effects on biodiversity, it also helps prevent erosion and soil degradation, absorb rainwater, and reduce suspended dust by 80%. In light of the positive impacts that were measured, in January 2020, seven American states introduced regulations to promote pollinator-friendly solar energy development. 



ENGIE takes action for the rivers and oceans

Using the same cross-functional “ARC” approach, we are actively reducing our impact.
In France, the Group is implementing environmental programmes for the preservation of the fauna and flora in the area of influence of our hydroelectric plants, in order to minimise the impact of the activity on the movement of aquatic species and sediments.


At sea, the Group’s offshore wind farms have been built with state-of-the-art methods to protect the biodiversity (aerial surveillance, GPS tracking, etc.). Studies on the impact of the wind farms on flora and fauna are also carried out. For example, around the Dieppe-Le Tréport offshore wind farm, ENGIE and its other partners set up a Groupement d’Intérêt Scientifique (scientific interest group) in February 2020. Its objective is to contribute to the development of scientific knowledge on the marine environment in the English Channel. Three studies began in 2021 (a census of natural gull colonies, analyses of the presence of seals and an analysis of plankton), and two other studies are planned for 2022 (one study on the food chains of the local fauna and how the former are affected by global warming, and a second study on bat populations and the assessment of possible migrations to England using genetic and acoustic tools). 


A key player in the environmental and energy transition, ENGIE is in constant contact with nature through its activities. Driven by our purpose, we implement a proactive policy with the aim of preserving our air, water, land, and ultimately, the climate.