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Collaboration as Innovation: the Heart of Schneider’s Sustainability Story

At Schneider Electric, we know that action on climate action is more urgent than ever. Climate change is a multi-faceted, world-wide, industry-agnostic challenge that cannot be addressed in silos. As we head into climate week, kicking off a busy period of climate change-related events leading up to COP26, we wanted to explore a key element of acting on climate: collaboration.

In order to reach the amount of greenhouse gas emission reductions outlined by the ambitions of the Paris Agreement, organizations, governments, and individuals need to work together. Collaboration with peers and partners is one of the most radical acts that businesses can do to scale our collective impact, accelerate sustainable innovation, and leverage collective knowledge and experience to reach ambitious goals. That’s why we’re collaborating with both the largest organizations and communities around the world to rapidly implement climate action solutions and improve access to renewable energy to drive change and decarbonization. Let’s explore just a few of the ways that Schneider Electric brings collaboration to the center of our sustainability strategy.

How we collaborate with the business community

Engaging the business community to use resources more responsibly, buy energy smarter, and operate more efficiently is a huge part of the value we seek to bring to the world. To hold ourselves responsible for creating opportunities for other companies to become more sustainable, we’ve set a goal to help our customers avoid more than 800 million metric tons of emissions through our products and services by 2025. Between 2018-2020 we helped our customers save 134 million metric tons of emissions through our products and consulting services. And through coalitions like the Climate Pledge, The CEO Climate Alliance, and UN Global Compact, we join organizations to accelerate renewable energy adoption and innovation.

Collaborating on increasing sustainability and renewable energy throughout the supply chain is a critical way that companies can drive faster and deeper greenhouse gas reductions that are needed to tackle the climate crisis. Not only does supply chain collaboration help decarbonize a company’s Scope 3 emissions, but also helps build trust, which is a major catalyst of resilience. To reduce emissions in our own supply chain, through The Zero Carbon project, we’re providing tools and resources to help our top 1,000 suppliers set and achieve their own carbon reduction goals. The project enables best practice exchange with peers and partners to increase access to innovative decarbonization solutions. We also help some of the biggest companies around the world create supply chain engagement programs to educate, encourage, and support their own supply chains in reducing emissions. 

Digital tools and communities are another way we foster corporate collaboration on sustainable business practices. Schneider has also launched a digital collaboration platform called Exchange with over 50,000 registered users, approximately 300 apps, more than 150 service providers listed, and around 100 communities onboarded.

How we collaborate with community members

We also collaborate with communities across the globe to drive progress and unlock meaningful impact at the local level. Over 650,000 global e-learners across 180+ countries have taken free energy courses from Schneider Electric University. Through our Access to Energy program and our technologies, we’ve helped over 30 million people from underserved communities gain access to clean energy, and aim to reach 80 million by 2030. We’ve provided job training to 281,000 underprivileged people and invested in more than 2,800 entrepreneurs, creating virtuous economic cycles that address poverty, energy, and digital access.

How we create transparency through collaboration

Collaboration and transparency have been embedded in our culture for decades. Public disclosure of environmental, social, and governance efforts is an integral part of driving the change the world needs. Schneider Electric discloses on ESG performance to RE100, EP100, EV100, CDP, DJSI, Vigeo Eiris, and EcoVadis and encourage our partners to do the same. We’ve disclosed our sustainability performance externally since 2005, and since 2015 have integrated our financial and sustainability performance.

As a result of disclosing sustainability performance and our efforts on climate action, we are honored to have received the below notable recognitions:

  • CDP 10-year A-List
  • Microsoft Changemaker of the Year
  • DJSI Industry Leader
  • ENERGY STAR partner of the year
  • Vigeo Eiris Advanced Industry Leader
  • EcoVadis Advanced Platinum
  • Corporate Knights Most Sustainable Corporation in 2021 
  • RE100 2020 Clean Energy Trailblazer
  • GSSC 2021 Best Global Sustainable Supply Chain Organization

At Schneider Electric, collaboration is part of our DNA. By treating collaboration as an innovation, and partnering with millions worldwide, we work to provide a cleaner energy future to ensure that Life Is On Everywhere, for Everyone, at Every Moment.

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