Firmenich powered by 100% renewables globally
Perfume company Firmenich has announced that its global operations are now powered by 100% renewable electricity, meetings its commitment to the RE100 initiative as a result.
In 2015, the company announced a vision of becoming carbon-neutral, supported by a $15m investment framework in renewable energy and onsite generation. Alongside purchasing renewable electricity, Firmenich has worked with suppliers and governments to spur development of local green power generation, including onsite wind and solar installations.
"I am proud that Firmenich is the first in our industry to ensure that all our operations worldwide are powered by 100% renewable electricity," the company’s chief executive Gilbert Ghostine said. "Present in more than 100 markets, with 39 plants worldwide, we are always open to sharing best practice on how ambitious, science-based targets can drive real progress against climate change."
The Group's renewables ambition is supported by RE100, even though the group has been unable to procure green electricity in Argentina and Singapore, which represents 5% of the company’s electricity demand. Citing factors beyond the group’s control, Firmenich has instead purchased renewable energy certificates from adjacent countries, an interim measure that is supported by the RE100, which is trying to improve supply in those markets.
In 2018, Firmenich had a goal to reduce Scope 1 & 2 emissions by 55% approved by the Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTi).
The Swiss perfume brand has built on its 2020 goal to reduce absolute emissions by 20% by having its emissions reduction goal for direct and electricity emissions verified by the SBTi. The 55% reduction goal, which has a 2030 target deadline, has been verified alongside a 20% reduction goal for Scope 3 emissions.
Firmenich invests 10% of its turnover in R&D and is striving towards its 2020 sustainability targets. Firmenich has decoupled its growth from its CO2 emissions, with manufacturing output up 18% and emissions down by 30% since 2015.
Water use will also be decreased by 25% in areas considered water-stressed, while waste efficiency rates will also be improved by 15%. The company is targeting zero waste sent to landfill across manufacturing sites and will eliminate the use of ozone-depleting refrigerant gases at these sites.
In January 2019, Firmenich and L’Oreal were named as the only companies to achieve CDP triple “A” status for climate change, water security and forests; a recognition that the businesses are continuing to scale up environmental action to contribute to both the Paris Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
In an exclusive interview with edie, Firmenich’s chief executive Gilbert Ghostine explained how the company was using an "inclusive capitalism" business model to deliver benefits for profits, the planet and people in a way that is causing others to "rally" behind the concept of sustainability.