Renewable electricity at all facilities

The Volvo Group is working hard to minimise its environmental footprint. Since January 2019, all facilities, operations and plants in France, Sweden, Belgium, and the main sites in the US, have been sourcing renewable electricity.

Renewable electricity at all facilities

Every year, the plant in Blainville purchases around 30,000 megawatt hours of electricity. Julie Michel, Environmental Manager at Group Trucks Operations, and her colleagues are working to find energy-saving actions.

Renewable Energy a global project initiated by Group Trucks Purchasing (GTP) in 2017, with the objective of introducing renewable energy at all Volvo Group facilities in France, Sweden, Belgium and the US from 1 January 2019.

Even though Sweden and parts of the US were already purchasing renewable electricity, the project demanded a totally new strategy for sourcing energy. Guillaume Perez, Senior Commodity Buyer at GTP, was responsible for the project at global level.

Guillaume Perez

“When we started, we didn’t know what the result would be. But we wanted to challenge the organisation to have standard requirements and a global mind-set when it comes to electricity.” 

Strong support
Guillaume Perez also says he had strong support from his manager, Ilvana Delic, and Marion Keller, Vice President Products & Operational Services at Group Trucks Purchasing.

“Their engagement in sustainability was clearly a key success factor for this project. ”The work was conducted cross-functionally and included employees from almost all business areas."

While Guillaume Perez was managing the project at global level, his colleague Mylene Perales was responsible for the European countries.

“A large part of the work involved explaining to users what buying renewable energy means and what the benefits are,” she says.

After nine months of hard teamwork, everyone was on board. It is no coincidence that France, Belgium, Sweden and the US are taking part in the project.

80 per cent
Together, these countries account for 80 per cent of the Volvo Group’s total energy consumption and the transition to renewable electricity is having a major impact on carbon emissions.

However, Guillaume Perez is hoping that the entire Group will eventually change to renewable energy sources.

“We started with the largest countries, but the small ones also have an important role to play. Poland has already joined and many more countries will be included,” he says.

The project has given Mylene Perales and Guillaume Perez some important new insights and they are looking forward to implementing the new business model in other areas.

“We should always investigate better methods of purchasing in terms of sustainability and environmental aspects, in line with the requirements and aspirations in the Volvo Group Supplier Code of Conduct. We are really proud of having participated in this achievement. When you work for a large company, it can sometimes be difficult to see the results of what you do, but we know that this project will have a major impact and make a difference. It’s like adding a brick to a big wall.”

New environmental policy
In January this year the new environmental policy was launched. Björn Brovik is Environmental Director Volvo Group.

Björn Brovik

“Volvo Group employees are totally decisive in the work to continuously reduce environmental impact from a lifecycle perspective. After all, all of us make the difference in the company. The policy specifies the principles and values that will provide guidance in both business decisions and everyday work. It is also designed to inspire new initiatives. Renewable Energy is an excellent example of this kind of project.”

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