In the most recent edition of ESM, as part of our Sustainability 2022 feature, we spoke to a number of top executives working across the global retail and consumer goods landscape about how they are seeking to set a high bar when it comes to sustainability.
Sergio Miguélez Morán, Corporate Social Responsibility, El Corte Inglés
The COVID crisis has made clear the need for immediate answers, and has demanded a huge level of responsibility and exigence from both corporations and society in general.
Sustainability and care for the environment are embedded into our corporate purpose. That is why we go to lengths to uphold our commitment to respecting the environment in any way it is affected by our business operations.
El Corte Inglés gears the bulk of our efforts towards preventing and recovering waste, reducing our consumption of resources – water, energy or fuel – and carrying out initiatives to complete the circular economy. We subscribe to several initiatives that set a targeted framework for addressing the situation of the planet.
We have been working for years to make the planet more sustainable and forge a better future for everyone. To that end, we have taken action on several fronts to foster decent and responsible manufacturing conditions, rationalise resource consumption and waste generation and tighten our bond with society and the environment.
Those lines of initiative have been guided by the various corporate social responsibility master plans put in place since 2017. The slogan selected for the first such plan, which concluded in 2020, was 'It is up to everybody', and this was articulated around listening and responding to the group’s various stakeholders.
Sustainability And CSR Master Plan
Now, we are embarking on a new 2021-2025 Sustainability and CSR Master Plan, which was approved by our board of directors in November 2020. The new plan is clearly designed to place sustainability at the heart of strategy going forward and is based on the European Green Deal and its carbon neutrality target for 2050.
It is also articulated around the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals for 2030 and the milestones established in the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.
Elsewhere, a 'Consumption Control' project is in the process of being implemented, which allows increasing knowledge of the use of energy, identifying behaviours, comparisons and anomalies in each of the different consumer systems, which in turn helps to determine adjustments in the facilities and a continuous improvement in operations. We currently have more than 4,000 telemetry points integrated in most of the El Corte Inglés centres.
This control system will continue to be accompanied by energy audits at night, which complement those carried out in previous years, and various actions by those responsible for maintenance.
In addition, El Corte Inglés, in its continuous specialisation in energy management, this year has begun a process of direct participation in the wholesale production markets through the figure of direct consumer, thus expanding its active participation in the energy sector.