A few weeks ago, I was excited to unveil what many of us at Schneider Electric had been planning for months: our new sustainability strategy, designed to accelerate the delivery of concrete results aligned to each of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
At the same time, Corporate Knights, a media and research company, ranked us as the Most Sustainable Corporation in the World. A coincidence? Not at all.
The ranking has been the fruit of many, many years of hard labor, led by teams across our organization who wake up every day and collaborate with our customers, business partners, and local communities across over 100 markets. And all to make the world a greener, fairer place.
It’s been a journey, since we started 15 years ago, measuring and monitoring our progress through our Schneider Sustainability Impact (SSI) dashboard. Over the years, we’ve steered our actions through short-term targets (renewed every 3-5 years) so we can pivot as needed, to meet the needs of the environment, society and our economy.
For each step forward, there has always been a common goal shared by all involved: to fight climate change, help the world lower CO2 emissions, so that we can keep the rise in average global temperatures to at or below 1.5° C above pre-industrial times. But that’s not all, we’ve also kept pushing for more diversity and inclusion, and the value of ethics and transparency.
The last SSI program, spanning 2018-2020, was no different: 21 ambitious goals centered on climate, circularity, health and equity, ethics and development. And despite the challenges of 2020, a year that caused so much disruption to our daily lives, I am proud that we not only kept our focus but exceeded our targets. Let me highlight a few.
In just the last three years:
- We helped our customers save over 130 million tons of CO2 emissions thanks to our digital solutions, technology and services, the equivalent of the CO2 emissions of nearly 30 million cars driven in the US for a year.
- We’ve grown the percentage of our operations powered by renewable electricity from 2% to 80%.
- We deployed our industry-leading Global Family Leave policy worldwide, which was especially valuable to Schneider employees since the pandemic started, allowing them to take additional leave to manage their health and well-being.
- We volunteered a total of 18,000 days to help local communities, including 5,000 days in 2020 devoted to the Schneider Electric Foundation’s “Tomorrow Rising Fund,” which supported activities related to helping those most in need due to the COVID-19 crisis.
- We trained over 130,000 underprivileged people in energy management so they could implement low-carbon energy solutions to benefit their communities.
- We worked with our suppliers to ensure their sites are compliant with our ethical labor standards, health and safety and environmental policies, conducting 372 audits in the process.
So now, it’s time to take stock and recognize everyone who worked so hard to help make this happen. Thank you to all employees and partners at every level, for your ideas, energy and contributions. We couldn’t have done it without you.
The journey never ends, and I can’t wait to make sustainability a reality for us all as we go even further and faster together.
View the results of the Schneider Sustainable Impact 2020 below and click here for the full presentation
Go here for more information on Schneider Electric’s accelerated sustainability strategy and 2021-2025 program.
If you want to read some of my other articles, please see below:
- Corporate action on climate change needed more than ever
- Why Providing Alternatives to SF6 and Other Greenhouse Gases is Important for Carbon Reduction Initiatives
- Our Actions to Reverse Biodiversity Loss
- Going Above and Beyond to Champion Clean Energy and Renewables
- World Environment Day 2020: Time for Nature