Setting a Science-based target and an emissions reduction strategy for the pharmaceutical group Servier

Case Study:
Servier
The pharmaceutical laboratory Servier chose EcoAct to structure its climate strategy and get its emissions reduction targets validated by the Science Based Target Initiative (SBTi), an international organisation specialised in emission reduction trajectories compatible with the Paris Agreement. This approach is aligned with the Group’s CSR strategy.

Carbon Footprinting

Any climate strategy starts by calculating a carbon footprint to understand your organisation’s climate impact and to focus your emissions reduction initiatives.

Science-based Targets

Science-based targets (SBTs) are ambitious carbon reduction targets in line with climate science.

The

challenge

EcoAct has been supporting the Servier group since the beginning of its climate strategy. The pharmaceutical company wanted to step up its action in the fight against climate change and needed help to structure its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction trajectory.

Emitting more than 100,000 tCO2eq per year on its Scopes 1 and 2, the group wanted to have a better vision of the sector’s best practices in climate action, set a science-based target (SBT) and define a robust action plan to reduce its direct and indirect emissions (Scopes 1, 2 and 3) while being aligned with the Paris agreement.

Due to the diversity of its activities and its international supply chain, the real challenge was to obtain reliable data to measure the group’s carbon footprint by enabling all sites to monitor their GHG emissions reduction trajectory.

Servier is an international pharmaceutical laboratory run by a Foundation. With a solid presence in 150 countries and a turnover of €4.6 billion in 2019, Servier employs 22,000 people worldwide and is headquartered in Suresnes, France. Totally independent, the Group invests an average of 25% of its turnover (excluding generic activities) in Research and Development every year and uses all its profits for the benefit of its development. The Group’s growth is based on a strong commitment to five areas of excellence: cardiovascular, immuno-inflammatory and neurodegenerative diseases, cancer and diabetes, as well as an activity in generic medicines; Servier also offers e-health solutions.

"We are facing a climate emergency and the contribution of companies is essential to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions. At Servier, we are mobilised. With EcoAct’s help, we have measured our carbon footprint and defined an ambitious strategy, the robustness and consistency of which has been confirmed by the SBTi. Our objective is to reduce our emissions by 25% by 2030. Even if the contributions of some departments are more impactful than others, our challenge is to involve all teams and every employee"

Vincent Minvielle
CSR Director of Servier

The

solution

The collaboration between the Servier group and EcoAct to implement the emission reduction strategy happened in several stages.

First, our experts carried out a comparative analysis of the climate strategies of Servier’s main competitors to position them according to four elements: measuring, reducing, offsetting and communicating. This benchmark, as well as the calculation of the carbon footprint of Servier’s 3 Scopes, enabled us to organise thematic workshops to identify existing reduction actions and those that could be implemented, particularly in five areas: sites’ energy efficiency, the choice of raw materials, waste management, product packaging and the transport of people and goods.

To monitor emissions, EcoAct experts have developed a tool that calculates the carbon footprint on all Scopes by consolidating data from production sites, the different activities of the group and those of its suppliers. Thanks to this tool, Servier is now able to analyse its carbon impact independently.

The analysis of the carbon footprint has enabled the group to define ambitious and achievable targets to reduce their emissions while being aligned with the Paris agreement to limit global warming to below 2°C: Science-based targets (SBT). The validation of an SBT by the SBTi is important to demonstrate an organisation’s real commitment; currently, only 593 organisations have received this validation. Servier’s targets have been defined in line with the possibilities for action in two major areas:

  • 25% emissions reduction by 2030 across all 3 Scopes. With indirect emissions exceeding 40% of the total footprint, the group had to commit to reducing them, although they are often the most difficult to manage within supply chains.
  • The commitment of suppliers to implement SBTs to optimise Servier’s raw material choices according to their footprint.

The carbon footprint and annual progress towards these targets will be published regularly in the group’s CSR report.

Today, the Servier group continues to deploy this strategy in all its departments and entities. Various actions are being implemented to better measure and reduce the group’s carbon footprint; Servier is also counting on the development of eco-designed alternatives to achieve its objectives.

The result

  • Identification of possible reduction actions through thematic workshops
  • Definition of science-based targets
  • SBTi validation of the emission reduction trajectory