In its Manifesto, VINCI committed to actively protecting biodiversity and extended that commitment to natural environments in response to issues involving local nuisances and water conservation.
Three levels of action have been identified:
- assess and avoid environmental nuisances and incidents in the Group’s business activities, both through environmental management systems and local nuisance prevention programmes;
- reduce water consumption, especially in areas of water stress;
- establish a zero net loss approach to biodiversity, notably by applying the “avoid-reduce-offset” principle to construction projects and finding alternative solutions to the use of phytosanitary products in operating infrastructure.
Each of the Group’s entities prepares and updates its own environmental incident prevention plan in response to its specific environmental risks. Risk analysis is carried out upstream of the largest projects, leading to the definition of the technical and organisational resources needed to prevent possible risks. Specific documents and equipment enable entities to prepare for and remedy emergency situations.
The Biodiversity Task Force, which comprises about 40 ecology experts and environment managers from VINCI’s different business activities, is responsible for the Group’s governance of biodiversity. This includes monitoring the regulatory environment, developing scientific expertise, analysing risks, promoting initiatives and sharing best practices. To that end, the task force encourages organisations, engineering and design departments, government authority representatives and companies to transmit information on what they do and the tools they use. The Group has developed a network of more than 500 biodiversity coordinators who work on issues affecting all business lines.
reduction in the consumption of phytosanitary products at VINCI Autoroutes since 2008
ecological inventory data transmitted to INPN, France’s national inventory of natural heritage
In 2020, VINCI was among the first eleven companies to commit to the voluntary act4nature international approach aimed at integrating biodiversity in all activities and at every level of the company. Its commitments cover improving and disseminating knowledge and best practices in biodiversity conservation, employee training and awareness-raising, developing new solutions and strengthening partnerships.
The Group’s water strategy is based on its environmental policy. It calls for including water consumption and pollution prevention in risk analyses, measuring and reducing water consumption resulting from its business activities and products, and protecting aquatic environments and their ecosystems. VINCI answered the CDP Water Information Request for the eighth time and was one of 2,435 companies worldwide capable of replying to the information request supported by 525 global investors. In 2019, the Group achieved a score of B- for its performance in 2018, better than that of many other companies in its sector for water management.
- opening of wildlife crossings along VINCI Autoroutes motorways in 2019, with environmental monitoring to ensure the structures’ functionality for wildlife;
- programme initiated in particular by VINCI Airports aimed at achieving zero use of phytosanitary products, and monitoring of pollinating insects in partnership with France’s national beekeepers association (Unaf);
- partnership with UMS Patrimoine Naturel, established in 2012 and renewed in 2019, consisting of compiling an inventory of species in Eurovia’s quarries and proposing suitable management measures;
- programmes to restore the environment carried out by the Group’s specialist ecological engineering companies, including Eurovia subsidiaries Cognac TP, GC3E and Sethy, and VINCI Construction Terrassement subsidiary Equo Vivo.