The LVMH Group, known for its many luxury brands, including Louis Vuitton, Christian Dior, Marc Jacobs and Givenchy, has achieved the 2018 sustainability objectives it set for itself when it created the LVMH Carbon fund three years ago, a program designed to limit the corporation’s greenhouse gas emissions.
LVMH requires that each of the “Maisons” under its umbrella contribute around 30 euros ($34) to the fund for every metric ton (about 2,204 pounds) of CO2 produced. Then, money from the Carbon Fund goes to improving energy efficiency and providing capital for other initiatives designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
For 2018, the LVMH group said it has funded 112 projects for this purpose, up from 64 in 2017.
Part of the increased efficacy for the program has to do with LVMH doubling the “price” of a metric ton of CO2 from 15 to 30 euros for 2018, which contributed to raising 11.3 million euros ($12.8 million) for the eco-friendly initiatives.
“Our clients are more and more sensitive to the fact the products they consume should respect the environment,” LVMH chairman, Bernard Arnault told Reuters reporters last year in addressing decision to raise CO2 contributions for the upcoming year. “Our partners and clients are very attached to this aspect and it seemed logical to make a shift and talk about it a little more.”
The combined effect of all 112 projects eliminated nearly 2,500 metric tons of carbon dioxide in 2018, which, according to LVMH, equates to the annual emissions of 1,600 European households.
“The success of our Carbon Fund once again underlines the major and decisive commitment of LVMH management and all our teams to help protect the environment and fight climate change. The LIFE environmental program is a top priority for all our employees. We thank them for their engagement and we continue to count on them to help us achieve all our environmental targets for 2020,” Antonio Belloni, LVMH group managing director, said in a statement celebrating the fund’s success in 2018.
And the Carbon Fund is just one aspect of the LIFE (LVMH Initiatives For the Environment) 2020 roadmap, which sees the corporation eliminating as much as 25 percent of its total emissions.
LVMH said its investment in energy-efficient projects puts it in line with the COP21 climate goals discussed in the Paris Climate Agreement that would put the Earth on a trajectory to a manageable 2 degrees Celsius increase due to climate change.
The group provided statistics for its efforts, saying that roughly 55 percent of the emission-curbing projects were for its retail locations and the rest for production sites, logistics and headquarters buildings. About 63 percent of its efforts were in Europe, with 29 percent of that occurring in France. The United States came in next, taking in 16 percent of total Carbon Fund contributions, leaving 15 percent for the Asia overall and 6 percent for Japan.
Four out of five projects were energy efficiency upgrades, including replacing lights with LEDs and upgrading older buildings with better insulation, air conditioning and heating. Thirteen percent of the remaining projects were to enable a greater use of renewable energy, and 6 percent were miscellaneous. The final percentage was used to recruit and employ an “energy manager,” a new position created in 2018 to help the group track and reduce energy consumption.