Environmental reporting network, tools and perimeter
The AXA Group coordinates a network of dedicated environmental managers and employees in local subsidiaries. AXA is working with these managers to analyze indicators, identify performance targets and promote the sharing of best practices.
In order to facilitate the environmental data collection process, the AXA Group developed an internal reporting tool that centralizes the collection, consolidation and analysis of local environmental data. Only sites featuring more than 50 FTEs are included in the targeted scope (data centers with fewer FTEs are however included). Since 2014, it embraced 42 countries over five continents.
Since 2011, to secure increased data quality, a formal local Chief Financial Officer (CFO) sign-off has been integrated into the reporting process.
In 2017, an annual transport survey available in 41 countries and in 22 languages is used to help estimating the amount of CO2 emissions related to home-work commuting and help raise employee awareness on alternative modes of transportation. In order to increase the educational component of the survey, a personalized results page was developed to provide employees with a comparison of their annual work-place commuting CO2 emissions with their site, company and the Group. Environmental protection tips are also provided at the same time. In addition to increasing employees' awareness on climate change issues, this survey helps refine the Group's estimated carbon footprint by revealing the share attributable to workplace commuting.
Environmental certification / audit
PricewaterhouseCoopers Audit, one of AXA SA's Statutory Auditors, reviewed the environmental reporting process (Environmental Protocol, reporting tool, organization), as well as the data collection processes of ten significant European, Asian and American entities. The auditors' statement of assurance is included in the Activity and Corporate Responsibility Report. In 2016, 61 sites were reported to have some form of environmental certification.
Environmental impact reduction
AXA’s power consumption includes the total energy consumed by our corporate sites and data centers in the reporting year. This includes on-site energy consumption for heating and cooling and purchased electricity for daily operational activities. In 2017, our total energy mix consists of electricity (73%), gas (15%), fuel/steam (8%) and chilled water (4%). To reduce our energy consumption and meet our 2020 environmental target, AXA relies on energy efficiency measures, raising environmental awareness amongst employees about energy conservation and, where possible, leasing or buying buildings which have some type of environmental certification. In 2017, these measures have resulted in 10% decrease in total power consumption compared to 2016 and 21% compared to 2012.
In addition to the steps taken above, by joining the “RE100” initiative in 2017, AXA also committed to buy 100% of its electricity from renewable energy sources by 2025, with an interim target of 70% by 2020. This target covers both AXA’s office buildings and AXA owned data-centers. In 2017, 115 sites bought electricity from renewable energy sources.
Local AXA entities made significant steps to reduce their on-site energy footprint, for example:
- AXA Technology Services continued implementing its Green IT program based on server refreshes, data center consolidation and virtualization, PC refreshes and power management. The total consumption for AXA Technology Services decreased by 13.4% when compared with 2016, which represents a net reduction of 7.5 GWh. Power consumption in data centers decreased by 9.7% to reach 39.3 GWh in 2017, which represents a net reduction of 4.2 GWh;
- In the United Kingdom, AXA entities have installed solar panels on certain buildings. The entity uses the electricity generated by these panels for on-site use and in some cases sell it back to the electricity grid.
Transportation, paper and energy
CO2 emissions are a key contributor to climate change; businesses have a role to play in reducing these emissions. In addition to the targets and initiatives described above, AXA has also committed to adopt “Science Based Targets” (sciencebasedtargets.org) to reduce its GHG emissions. Targets adopted are considered “science-based” if they are in line with the level of “de-carbonization” required to keep global temperature increase below 2 degrees Celsius, as mentioned by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. The Group’s measures CO2 emissions via the Green House Gas (GHG) Protocol: Scope 1, Scope 2 and Scope 3. AXA’s overall CO2 emissions per FTE related to energy, paper and business travel (air, rail and car fleet) decreased by 11% between 2017 and 2016 and by 28% between 2012 and 2017. 46% of the Group’s CO2 emissions are related to energy consumption, 32% from business travel (air and train), 16% from AXA’s vehicle fleet and 6% from paper.
Water scarcity is a global concern. Prudent water management can therefore play a significant role in sustainable use of this resource. AXA’s water consumption per FTE has decreased by 8% in 2017. Over time AXA entities have achieved a better level of management maturity and reporting quality regarding their water consumption patterns. Recent initiatives include the installation of water sensors in bathroom facilities for AXA France and water-saving initiatives at AXA Switzerland.
AXA’s use of paper is limited to office and marketing & distribution uses. The office paper consumption per FTE has decreased by 13% between 2016 and 2017. Many entities have implemented a printing policy which includes reducing the number of printers, and installing an employee badging system to collect all printed documents. In 2017, AXA’s marketing and distribution paper consumption per customer decreased by 29% compared to 2016, partly owing to a more accurate measurement process in some entities. AXA also strives to increase the volume of paper originating from recycled sources or sustainably managed forests. In 2017, AXA used 58% of office paper and 51% of marketing and distribution paper from recycled sources. The Group requires environmentally-friendly office paper as a minimum standard.
Waste management and circular economy
AXA’s waste management policy integrates principles related to the circular economy such as “closing the loop” of product lifecycles. Recycling and re-use are followed to better manage our waste wherever possible. Even though AXA has not set any direct quantitative targets on waste generation, local entities are encouraged to improve their onsite waste sorting and implement voluntary initiatives to reduce waste and promote recycling. AXA monitors it waste through three main indicators: Unsorted waste, sorted paper for recycling, and cartridge/toners for recycling.
In 2017, 29%of the total paper consumed (office, marketing and distribution) was sorted for recycling by AXA. AXA has no control on the end of life of its marketing and distribution paper going to its clients. 55% of ink cartridges and toners were recycled. AXA’s IT business unit, AXA Technology Services, for which electronic waste is of particular relevance, also as it strives to ensure compliance with the Waste Electronic and Electrical Equipment (WEEE) Directive. Unsorted waste has decreased by 9% compared to 2016. This is mainly due to better waste measurement processes in local entities. Over 73 canteens in the Group collect to recycle organic waste from their restaurants.