Principles in action
Because you can only change what you measure, in 2007, we began to calculate the Group’s CO2 emissions. An ambitious objective was set at the time to reduce the average carbon footprint per employee by 40% before 2020. Reducing our footprint further, especially in absolute terms given our growth, will require stronger ambitions as far as our infrastructure, mobility and consumption as a firm are concerned.
Use an efficient infrastructure
We built our Geneva headquarters in 2006 with sustainability in mind. At the time – a full nine years before the Paris Agreement of 2015 – this kind of consideration was still rare.
Energy efficiency in 2019
We have employed a range of solutions to increase the energy efficiency of Pictet’s head office in Geneva. The three main installations – a solar air conditioning plant, a heat transfer plant and photovoltaic panels – mean that we can avoid using fossil fuels and prevent CO2 emissions, and also produce clean electricity. Thanks to these three installations, the Pictet Group cuts its CO2 emissions in 2019 by 295 tons.
42,703 In kWh of produced energy, the equivalent of recharging 470 electric cars
103,597 Number of litres of fuel oil saved thanks to the heat transfer system between our Geneva buildings
600 Size in m2 of the solar air conditioning plant on the roof of Pictet’s headquarters in Geneva
958 In kilogrammes, CO2 emission per employee at Pictet’s Paris office – the Group’s lowest carbon footprint
Support green mobility
Promoting video conferencing as an alternative to business travel
For the last decade, long before the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic, Pictet has constantly been expanding its videoconferencing systems, with the aim of reducing its carbon emissions linked to business travel.
While nothing replaces physical meetings, we encourage the use of video conferencing. In total, 290 video conferencing facilities have been installed across the Pictet Group. Between 2010 and 2019, the number of video conferences rose sharply.
Promoting soft mobility
We encourage our employees to opt for soft mobility solutions for commuting to and from work.
There are various benefits available to employees at our Geneva head office:
- Free recharging stations for electric bikes and cars
- Free public transport for employees who give up their parking spot
- A partnership with Genève Roule, a local association that provides electric bikes
Understanding and managing waste
In our quest to minimise the direct impact of our business, and the impact of our employees, we also launched a landmark campaign in 2018 to cut our single-use plastic consumption.
We identified two main sources of plastic waste – our employee restaurants and offices supplies – and put in place more sustainable alternatives. Thanks to this initiative, the Pictet Group reduced the use of disposable plastic by 90% in just 12 months.
Quantis – a sustainable development consultancy – helped Pictet through this process to understand how companies deal with plastic waste.
What advice did you give Pictet to reduce their plastic waste?
Gregory Simonnin: Pictet approached Quantis at the end of 2018 with a very detailed inventory of all the plastic objects used daily within the Group. Together, we developed strategies to integrate the use of plastics with a more sustainable approach. While it is important to reduce the use of plastic as much as possible, our role is to ensure that the alternative options are not even worse for the environment. For example, replacing plastic packaging used for food might not necessarily be positive if it leads to an increase in food waste. That is why we advocate an approach that avoids single use.
What are Pictet’s main challenges in reducing waste?
GS: Pictet has branches all over the world. Waste treatment varies enormously from one country to another, but the basic concept is that plastic waste must not be allowed to enter the environment after collection. We helped Pictet identify the countries in which plastic leakage is a big challenge. In these countries, a drastic reduction in single-use items, particularly plastic, is required.
Have you noticed a change in the awareness of companies about waste management?
GS: We’ve seen increased interest in waste management, and more particularly of plastics, over the past couple of years. We also exchange with several peers in Geneva to share best practices in this “Cut the plastic” campaign. This topic concerns almost all the sectors we work in, from food producers, to cosmetics or sports events.
Responsibility at Pictet
Our brochures give a full view of the Pictet Group’s approach to sustainability and responsible investing.