Environmental Performance

Environmental Performance

Prysmian Group aims to reduce its environmental footprint through lower energy consumption, an efficient use of natural resources, the optimisation of logistics flows and responsible waste management . The Group measures and reports its most significant environmental impacts on employees and local communities, and their significance as a competitiveness and value factor. These aspects regard: energy consumption, in both manufacturing and service activities; water consumption, which is significant due to the large volumes needed for cooling in the various production cycles; hazardous and non-hazardous waste; recycled waste, both hazardous and non-hazardous; greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs).

Our current energy performance

The energy efficiency projects launched or advanced in 2022 covered several areas of interest. Some of them had been previously studied and analysed by the HSE function jointly with other central functions, with the goal of implementing the already validated initiatives in an increasing number of the Group’s regions and plants. In 2022, the Group’s investments in all of its HSE projects, including work on energy efficiency, reduction of direct GHG emissions and optimisation of the management of both water-based cooling systems and waste, amounted to about €37 million. Of this, about €16 million was invested in initiatives for improving environmental management.

Our total energy consumption in 2022 was 9.9 million gigajoules (GJ), of which 4.11 million GJ generated by electricity, and over 2 million GJ by electricity from renewable sources.

Greenhouse gas emissions

Prysmian’s climate strategy adopts “science-based” targets aligned with the requirements of the Paris Agreement, which calls for net-zero emissions by 2035 for those generated by internal activities (Scopes 1 and 2) and by 2050 for those generated by the value chain (Scope 3). Starting in 2021, Prysmian has been disclosing a GHG Statement with the aim of tracking its progress against established targets and giving a transparent disclosure of the whole value chain carbon footprint. In 2022, Scope 3 emissions accounted for more than 99% of the Group’s total carbon footprint.

Other air emissions, discharges to water and releases to land - Prevention of pollution

To prevent and mitigate environmental risks, the Group has implemented an Environmental Management System (EMS), centrally coordinated and locally managed by the Health, Safety & Environment (HSE) function within the framework of the said system. The EMS has been certified ISO 14001 in 97% of Prysmian’s operating sites. Further information is available in the Prysmian Group Sustainability Report 2022, page 139.

Hazardous and non-hazardous waste

Overall, Prysmian Group’s waste in 2022 totalled 234,405,714 kilograms, with hazardous waste accounting for 6% of total waste produced.

For the report to be based on homogeneous criteria, in compliance with the requirements set forth by the EU legislation, the Corporate HSE Department decided to apply to all the operational units the same criteria for classifying waste products. In that respect, the main waste products derived from production operations have been subdivided into specific categories, assigning each one a hazardous/non-hazardous status. Various use/destination categories are defined for each type of waste product:

• Recycling — for which Prysmian has set its group targets (to increase the percentage of recycling);

• Incinerator;

• Landfill;

• Other uses/destinations (residual category).

Regarding non-hazardous waste, the HSE and Manufacturing functions are carrying out ever more detailed checks to align the way that waste is collected and reported at group level. In particular, reports now include a specific “Scrap cable” caption in order to improve the tracking of that material.

Waste recycling

Whenever waste is unavoidable, finding the best recycling solution helps to stay sustainable and efficient. In 2022, Prysmian set a target for recycling 65% of its waste that was overcome exceeded in that same year, reaching 71%. In terms of the disposal method used for the different categories of total waste produced, 90% of the cables are recycled at their end-of-life, while the remaining 10% is transferred to landfills.

Water consumption

Prysmian Group’s plants mainly use water for cooling purposes, and local wells are the main sources of water, satisfying more than half of all water needs. The water used for cooling at many Prysmian plants is recirculated, in whole or in part, which currently allows to optimise water and energy consumption.

In order to identify possible water-stress conditions over a time horizon extended to 2040, we analysed the geographical position of the Group’s sites and found that about 23% of them will be potentially exposed to the risk of reduced water availability. To lower the exposure to such risk, Prysmian has already put in place a mitigation plan including continuous monitoring of water consumption, appropriate maintenance of the water systems to avoid losses, and further improvements of the water recycling systems for optimising water consumption.

To highlight the relevance of the “water” topic, in 2023 Prysmian also signed the WASH Pledge, committing to implementing an appropriate level of access to safe water and sanitation and hygiene solutions at the workplace for all employees in all premises under its control within three years of signing. The WASH Pledge was launched in 2013, and to date, over 50 companies have signed up.

Discover more at the website: WASH Pledge – WASH4Work

Biodiversity protection

Prysmian seeks to plan activities that are respectful of natural habitats in order to maintain their balance without adversely affecting any of the biological functions of the areas selected for operations, whether on land or at sea, while restoring any habitats that are adversely impacted by those activities. This commitment involves carrying out prior feasibility analyses of new plants and monitoring protected areas in the context in which the Group operates, considering aspects such as local legislation on biodiversity and the geographical proximity of its plants to protected areas or environments where potentially endangered species are present.

In order to consolidate the Group’s commitment to protecting biodiversity and nature, Prysmian has established an inventory of protected areas — prepared directly by each plan — that will be updated annually. The analyses carried out and the inventories show that the majority of Prysmian Group plants are currently not located in or near protected areas. Where necessary, or as agreed with the local authorities, Prysmian plants take part in conservation initiatives, including for example:

• in 2021, the Sorocaba site in Brazil, within which there is a Permanent Preservation Area (about 10 hectares, divided into two lots), launched a project in coordination with CETESB (Governmental Environmental body) to plant or sow seeds for about 960 plant organisms as environmental compensation for use of the protected area;

• a similar request was made by the Brazilian municipality of Pocos de Caldas in 2022. The site arranged to plant 220 native plant species in an area of 2,630 m2 within the Prysmian site;

• at the site in Washington (UK), an area of 36 m2 has been dedicated to the preservation of local flora and fauna.

As part of marine and land installation activities, which usually occur in areas of high natural value, there may be a need to provide measures to protect species identified as being at risk according to national regulations.


Improvement initiatives

In 2022, the Group’s investment in all of its HSE projects, including work on energy efficiency, the reduction of direct GHG emissions and optimisation of the management of both water-based cooling systems and waste, amounted to about €37 million. Of this, about €16 million was invested in initiatives for improving environmental management, involving about 80 sites in 30 countries within Prysmian’s reporting scope. The project to reduce SF6 was approved centrally at the end of 2021, with a view to cutting by 90% over 5 years the CO2eq emissions associated with the use of this gas. The Livorno and Montereau plants were involved in 2022 and, thanks to an improved management and monitoring of SF6 consumption in its use phases (mainly in product testing activities), a 76% reduction in environmental impact was achieved at Livorno and a 10% reduction at Montereau. Largely as a result of this project, the Group’s direct emissions associated with the release of SF6 fell by 47%.

This project will continue in the coming years with further investments in the minimisation of SF6 releases. Since 2013, Prysmian has made its environment management initiatives public by participating in the CDP (Carbon Disclosure Project) global environmental reporting system. In 2022, the Group received an [A-] rating, positioning itself within the Leadership band and above the European average of [B].