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Storengy France: biodiversity at the heart of life on site
Did You know ? 28/09/2021

Storengy France: biodiversity at the heart of life on site

The story between Storengy France and biodiversity began in the 2010s, as part of the "Storengy 2015" corporate project. "At the time, Storengy wanted to develop all its biodiversity initiatives on a pilot site in Céré-la-Ronde (Indre-et-Loire). The idea was to test all that was likely to preserve or even improve biodiversity and then, in a second phase, to apply these measures to other sites", explains Denis Leca, Biodiversity Manager at Storengy France.

From September 6 to 11, the IUCN World Conservation Congress was held in Marseille and was an opportunity for ENGIE to showcase its commitment and its achievements in favor of the preservation of Biodiversity.

It is really essential to rely on local associations to defend the implementation of measures in favor of biodiversity on our sites.

Denis Leca

Storengy France then signed up to the national biodiversity strategy in 2014, and implemented a comprehensive action plan for biodiversity  in 2015, including:

  • staff education and training, 
  • the co-construction of solutions with the territories, 
  • developing techniques and building skills for pragmatic implementation in situ.

The inclusion of biodiversity within the company: a challenge for the industrialist

According to Denis Leca, including the biodiversity parameter is a real challenge for an industrial company, especially on a Seveso classified site: "We have no problem managing environmental issues such as effluent treatment or emission reduction. But we didn't really know how to handle biodiversity. We decided to integrate it into our facility management contract . 

Our idea was to move from a logic of simply maintaining green spaces to one of ecological management. This was an unprecedented adventure with the purchasing departments, which played a very important role in implementing Storengy's biodiversity policy”

As a result, Storengy France has created it's new "eco-FM" (eco-facility management) contract model, which is now negotiated at group level and places the issue of ecology at its core. 

This contract was implemented in 2018 and covers the maintenance of the sites outdoor areas (1,500 hectares throughout France, spread over 14 sites, two-thirds of which being land reserves, agricultural areas and forests) and requires to stop using phytosanitary products, a challenge for "sevso classified" sites.

This initiative won the 2019 Blue Day award for best provider-operator association between Terideal  and Storengy.

A fundamental partnership architecture for a strong commitment

New stakeholders for Storengy France then entered the process. Indeed, ecological management solutions require very specific skills to define and implement them.  Moreover, for Denis Leca "it is really essential to rely on local associations to defend the implementation of measures in favor of biodiversity on our sites”. A a result,  the following entities are partners of Storengy France and help to define its challenges, objectives and strategy, as well as to select, challenge and implement solutions in favour of biodiversity, then ensure the follow-up, increase its competence and keep its commitment.

  • Conservatories of natural areas, 
  • CPIE (Centre permanent d'initiatives pour l'environnement), 
  • Local ecologists
  • Conservatories of regional natural areas,
  • LPO,The French league for the protection of birds, 
  • The Museum d'Histoire Naturelle,
  • IUCN

"Our last commitment is to become "a committed to nature company". We submitted our application in May 2021; it commits us for five years with a progress report in the next two years. As part of our governance and strategy, we have set up a committee chaired by the CEO of Storengy France and co-chaired by the director of the French IUCN committee. Their mission is to monitor our actions and to challenge us to exceed our own objectives”.

A look back at the IUCN World Conservation Congress 2020

Denis Leca and Pierre Chambon, CEO of Storengy France, attended the IUCN World Congress 2020, which took place from 6 to 11 September in Marseille. 

"One of the main messages of the IUCN World Congress was that we can no longer address the issue of climate change and its adaptation by ignoring the erosion of biodiversity. The IUCN proposes to develop solutions based on nature, allowing to preserve biodiversity, to contribute to the fight against climate change, to a better water management, to limit soil erosion... as well as to have positive externalities for the territories: employment, green economy, etc. So we are really committed to this approach," explains Denis.

During the congress, Denis many innovative actors presenting solutions for biodiversity. He took special notice of solutions allowing to quantify the actions undertaken and to measure their beneficial effects, this being a real challenge. 

"I was very interested in biomonitoring measurements using pollens or lichens. Biomonitoring allows us to measure the impacts of our activities on living organisms in a very precise way, both spatially and temporally, and it is really very interesting. Modellzation does not allow this type of approach or this type of result".

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