L’Oréal is tackling climate change head on with its new sustainability program called L’Oréal for the Future, which means beauty-lovers will benefit from more environmentally sustainable products.
Designed with the aim of respecting ‘planetary boundaries’, its science-based targets will cover the entire life-cycle of its products.
For example, consumers will benefit from its new Product Environmental & Social Impact Labelling system (endorsed by independent scientific experts and verified by an independent auditor) which will be progressively deployed for all L’Oréal brands.
More focus is also being placed on developing environmentally sustainable products, such as the recently-launched of YSL Pure Shots range which comes in eco-safe refillable bottles.
L’Oreal’s Targets For Its New Sustainability Program
o By 2025 all of L’Oréal’s sites will have achieved carbon neutrality by improving energy efficiency and using 100% renewable energy.
o By 2030 100% of the plastics used in L’Oréal’s products’ packaging will be either from recycled or bio-based sources.
o By 2030 L’Oréal will reduce by 50% per finished product, compared to 2016, its entire greenhouse gas emissions.
As Jean-Paul Agon, Chairman and CEO of L’Oréal, said: “L’Oréal’s sustainable revolution is entering a new era. The challenges the planet is facing are unprecedented, and it is essential to accelerate our efforts to preserve a safe operating space for humanity. We do so in our own business operations and in our contribution to the society at large.”
Rodrigo Pizarro, CEO of L’Oréal Australia, added: “As a father, I look at my children and feel an urgent need to help shape a better future for them. Leading scientists tell us that we have one decade to act on climate change. We all have a responsibility to be part of that action and ensure a safe, promising future for the generations that will come after us.”
“In the end, we need to do more than just change our business operations – every company also needs to contribute financially. L’Oréal’s impact investing strategy will enable us to contribute to solving the world’s environmental and social challenges.
“Social sustainability is every bit as important as environmental sustainability, and we are committed to financially supporting the empowerment of communities currently facing a range of challenges around the world.”Rodrigo Pizarro, CEO of L’Oréal Australia
Transforming L’Oréal’s business to respect ‘planetary boundaries’
L’Oreal’s statement said: ‘Planetary boundaries’ are limits, which, if crossed, will compromise the Earth’s capacity as a habitat for human development. Respecting a safe operating space for humanity must be a priority in the decades to come, as scientists unanimously agree, which is why L’Oréal aims to transition to a way of operating its entire business within the limits of the planet.
Therefore, the Group has defined new quantifiable targets for 2030, to fight climate change as supported by the ‘Science Based Targets’ initiative but is also going one-step further by addressing three other major environmental issues: preservation of biodiversity, sustainable water management and circular use of resources. To ensure its business is respectful of a resource-limited planet, and fair for the communities it works with, L’Oréal will not only continue to reduce its direct environmental impacts, but also reduce the impacts of its entire activity including those of its suppliers and consumers.
As Alexandra Palt, L’Oréal Chief Corporate Responsibility Officer, added: “Over the past decade, we have profoundly transformed our company, putting sustainability at the very core of our business model. With our new commitments, we are entering a new phase of acceleration of that transformation: going beyond our direct environmental impact, helping consumers to make more sustainable choices, as well as generating positive social and environmental contribution.
“As an industry leader, we consider that it is our role to contribute to building an inclusive and sustainable society,” he said.
A concrete example of what L’Oréal wants to achieve: by 2025, all of the Group’s manufacturing, administrative and research sites will reach carbon neutrality by improving energy efficiency and using 100% renewable energy. Through this commitment, L’Oréal wishes to contribute to the energy transition in countries where it operates.
Contributing to solving the world’s challenges by supporting urgent social and environmental needs, through an unprecedented plan launched in May 2020:
L’Oréal announced in May 2020 it will allocate €150 million to address urgent social and environmental issues:
* L’Oréal is engaging €100 million into impact investing, in order to act upon key environmental challenges. €50 million will be used to finance damaged natural marine and forest ecosystems restoration projects through a fund called the L’Oréal Fund for Nature Regeneration, to be operated by Mirova, an affiliate of Natixis Investment Managers, dedicated to impact investing. Another €50 million will be directed to financing projects linked to the circular economy.
* To help vulnerable women, L’Oréal is also creating a €50 million charitable endowment fund. It will support field organisations and local charities in their efforts to fight poverty, help women achieve social and professional integration, provide emergency assistance to refugee and disabled women, prevent violence against women, and support victims.
About L’Oréal’s sustainability commitments: we are not starting from scratch
Very early on, L’Oréal became aware of the need to respond to environmental challenges. As an industrial company, it decided that tackling the environmental impact of its plants and distribution centers was the most obvious first step, and a necessary one, to begin its transformation process. This first phase is nearly completed.
Since 2005, the Group has reduced the CO2 emissions of its plants and distribution centers by 78% in absolute terms, exceeding its initial target of 60% by 2020, while production volume increased by 37% over the same period.
At the end of 2019, L’Oréal had 35 carbon neutral sites (meaning they use 100% renewable energy), including 14 factories.
In 2013, L’Oréal decided to address the core of its activity: the development of beauty products, its global sustainability programme Sharing Beauty With All, announcing tangible sustainability goals towards 2020. At its core laid an innovative tool known as SPOT (for Sustainable Product Optimisation Tool), made to assess and improve the environmental and social performance of products across all brands. Sustainability is now fully integrated into the design process of the Group’s new products, from the earliest stages.
85% of products created or renovated in 2019 had an improved environmental and social profile.
By end of 2019, L’Oréal has helped 90,635 people from disadvantaged communities find employment through the solidarity purchasing and inclusion programs.
L’Oréal is the only company in the world to have achieved an “A” score in all three CDP rankings – climate protection, water management, forest preservation – for 4 years in a row.
Research and innovation, and a research team of 4,100 people, are working to meet L’Oréal’s strategy and targets.
For more information about L’Oreal’s new sustainable products, visit here.