Schneider Electric has decided to set an example for many of the world’s companies and dedicate its work to saving the future of our planet. But it is not just another empty pledge aimed at promoting the company – it is in fact a sound business decision, says Dejan Marković, General Manager of Schneider Electric for Serbia and Montenegro.
What will be the milestones you tend to reach in the future and what will change in your agenda in line with the new direction of business development?
– Schneider Electric is set to take three new actions in the years to come – we will accelerate the 2030 goal of carbon neutrality in its extended ecosystem by five years to 2025, set net-zero operational emissions by 2030 as part of validated Sustainability target, and achieve a net-zero supply chain by 2050. We have to keep in mind that every 0.5 ˚C rise in temperature increases the risk of extreme and life-threatening weather patterns, water shortages, coastal floods and other harmful environmental effects. By 2030, global net human-caused emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) would need to fall by about 45% from 2010 levels, reaching “net zero” by around 2050. That means that we need to make transitions in land, energy, industry, buildings, transport, and cities.
The cost of such profound change must be extremely high?
– The cost of not doing that will be much higher. The world economy recognises the importance of those changes and, as a result, we have sound economic reasons for decarbonising. Companies that follow green policies in more developed countries can boost customer loyalty and brand image, attract top employees, reduce operating costs and increase shareholder value. The latest World Economic Forum (WEF) research reveals that companies which focus on environmental initiatives have been growing by an annual rate of 15%.
In Finland, merchandising chain Lidl runs on 100 per cent renewable energy through a new distribution centre that draws on IoT-enabled microgrid and building solutions from Schneider Electric. This is the largest totally renewable industrial microgrid in Finland, which includes an advanced building automation system and covers an area equivalent to the size of 10 football pitches
Additionally, based on nearly 80,000 emission-reducing projects reported by 190 Fortune companies in 2016, almost $3.7 billion was returned in savings. That is one reason why mitigating climate change is an increasingly important corporate strategy.
How much can a company save through digitalisation and usage of our solutions?
– We offer our clients a unique opportunity to be more profitable in the long run. Results from Schneider Electric customers indicate that these savings can be substantial — up to 50% reductions in investment costs, with an average savings of 23%. At Schneider, we have more than 80 Smart Factories which have been built or refitted to achieve efficiency gains for our supply chain. We’ve seen a 15% reduction in energy consumption through power, automation, and software, thanks to the implementation of our own EcoStruxure™-backed solutions. These are improvements all industrial companies could make to save money and the future of our planet.