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Seeking a balance

We believe that only an efficient approach to natural resources can benefit the ecosystems.
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Climate Change

We invest in adopting a responsible and proactive stance, aiming to reduce the carbon footprint resulting from our activities.

We want to reduce our consumption of energy and water and we choose less polluting refrigerant gases, because we believe that only an efficient approach to natural resources can benefit the ecosystems.

 

WATER AND ENERGY CONSUMPTIONS

By being committed to efficient resource management, we are able not only to obtain savings but more importantly, to implement initiatives that aim to fight climate change. Our goal is to reduce water and electricity consumption by 2% per €1,000 of sales annually.

An example of this commitment is the project “Teams for Managing Water and Energy Consumption”, whose objective is to raise the awareness of the over 30,000 employees working in our more than 500 stores in Portugal, regarding the fight against waste and the rational use of energy and water.

Between 2011 and 2018, we saved over 5.5 million euros, reflected in 334,857 m3 of water and 43,368,670 kWh of electricity.

We seek to integrate environmental criteria into our infrastructures’ building and refurbishing projects.

Biedronka, Pingo Doce, Recheio and Ara have been implementing efficient control systems for cold storage, lighting, refrigerated furniture or freezers with doors and covers, as well as autonomous energy management systems.

Our most recent Distribution Centre, in Alfena, enables us to increase our energy efficiency, obtaining reductions in energy consumption of around 32% compared to the usual technology, as well as contributing towards water savings in the order of 1,700 m3. It also collected over 1,900 m3 of rainwater for use in the cooling and sprinkler systems and for washing the outside of trucks in 2018.

In the Gachancipá Distribution Center (Colombia), rainwater is treated for human consumption and also for use in refrigeration systems. Since it was inaugurated, there has been an exploitation of around 2,000 m3 of water.

In the office buildings in Portugal, we launched in 2015 the project “Let’s Go Green”, aiming to encourage people to adopt more responsible best practices in their use of energy, water and paper. Between 2015 and 2018, it was possible to secure a 178,000 kWh reduction in electricity consumption and a 435 m3 reduction in water consumption.

RENEWABLE ENERGY

We invest in renewable energy systems, such as passive underground cooling or heating, the use of solar collectors for heating water, lamp posts fed by photovoltaic panels and tubular systems for transporting natural light.

These systems enabled us to save approximately 386 thousand euros in 2018. This gain in efficiency meant we were able to prevent the emission of 1,959 tons of carbon into the atmosphere, an improvement of 1,182 tonnes compared to 2017.

At the same time, we took the strategic decision to buy, from July 1st 2018, electricity from renewable sources to meet the needs of the operations of our brands in Portugal: Pingo Doce, Recheio, Hussel and Jeronymo.

Taking into account the commitment made in the Group’s Environmental Policy to combat the consumption of fossil fuels and climate change, we have bought renewable energy certificates, which allow us to offset greenhouse gas emissions resulting from electricity consumption. These emissions, in 2018 (only in the second half), represented the equivalent of about 130 thousand tons of CO2e.

Also in 2018, we established a partnership to implement a pilot project for the installation of 3,876 solar panels in an area of ​​17,700 m2, covering two buildings: Algoz Distribution Center and Recheio de Tavira store. These facilities generate an energy autonomy of around 2 million kWh per year, supplying about a third of the total energy consumed.

 

LOGISTICS PROCESSES

As our core business is Distribution, we seek to reduce the environmental impacts linked to the logistics processes throughout our value chain, minimising the consumption of raw materials and energy resources and also reducing the amount of emissions and waste.

Through our backhauling programme, consisting of optimising delivery routes and maximising loads, during the return journeys, we collect empty pallets from our stores and suppliers in Portugal and in Poland.

Between 2011 and 2018, we collected around 3.9 million pallets, saving 56.2 million kilometres in journeys, the equivalent of 73 trips to the moon and back, and prevented the emission of 53.6 thousand tonnes of CO2.

In Portugal, 81% of the goods transport vehicles comply with the Euro 5 requirements (149 vehicles) and Euro 6 requirements (136 vehicles) proposed by the European Union. In Poland, 95% of the goods transport vehicles comply with the Euro 5 requirements (530 vehicles) and Euro 6 requirements (585 vehicles). In Colombia, 28% of the trucks comply with the Euro 5 requirements (51 vehicles), an increase of more than 35 vehicles compared to 2017.

 

REFRIGERANT GASES

We believe that the effective use of refrigerant gases is essential for minimising their impact on climate change. That’s why we’ve been heightening the control of leaks in conjunction with our partners, by using more efficient technologies:

  • In Poland, we installed cooling systems with thermal roll-containers with CO2 snow in the 16 Distribution Centres (DC). In Portugal, the same system is in operation in the Algoz DC;
  • We have installed cooling technologies (54 stores in Portugal and 591 stores and 3 DC in Poland) which run exclusively on CO2;
  • We have 5 DC with refrigerated warehouses (positive and/or negative cold) with systems running on ammonia combined with glycol;
  • We have 1,383 stores with freezers that use only propane.

 

CARBON FOOTPRINT

In 2018, our carbon footprint stood at around 1.06 million equivalent tons of CO2, a decrease of 11.8% compared to 2017, which is mostly justified by the acquisition of renewable energy certificates.

Our goal is to reduce the Group’s carbon footprint by 5%, per €1,000 of sales, in the 2018-2020 three-year period.

Find out more about our approach to climate change in our responses to CDP Climate, available in the related content set out on this page.

Independent Verification

The data referring to the number of locations with environmental certification was verified by an external and independent auditor within the scope of the Group’s 2018 Annual Report.

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