Environmental conservation is part of DIA’s corporate culture. The group has an environmental policy for all of its markets which establishes the framework governing the company’s business activities. This policy was revised and ratified in 2015, having corroborated compliance with Spain’s new corporate governance recommendations.
DIA’S ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY
In 2015, the company launched a tool that enables it to compute its carbon footprint at all its facilities and in all its activities, as well as establishing new environmental performance indicators.
DIA took the step of publicly sharing information on its greenhouse gas emissions and the measures taken to mitigate them by responding to the CDP-Climate Change questionnaire.
Thanks to this effort, DIA received the Best Newcomer Award Spain 2015 from the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP). The CDP, which assesses companies on their environmental transparency, gave DIA the highest score among all of this index’s newcomers.
CDP is an independent non-profit organisation; it boasts the world’s largest database of corporate information on climate change and encompasses over 800 socially-responsible investors with €90 billion of assets under management globally.
Committed to cutting emissions
The company´s commitment to cutting emissions is a priority aspect of its sustainable development strategy given its importance as a logistics player and the intensive use of energy required by the retail business. In 2015, DIA´s logistics activities - across all its markets - generated greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to 131,498,024 kg of carbon dioxide. This marked a year-on-year decline in all markets except for Spain, where the increase in emissions was directly related to growth in the store network and logistics platform.
Year after year DIA improves its logistics processes, reducing its emissions in parallel. The major development on the logistics front in 2015 was the integration of the perishable goods IT systems. All year long the company worked to standardise the basic application and all of the processes entailed in managing these products at the group’s warehouses worldwide with the aim of aligning the logistics system with the company’s key strategic thrust in 2015.
No. of warehouses by country
Efficient use of energy resources is one of the cornerstones of DIA’s sustainable growth model as this helps reduce its environmental impact and cut costs. In 2015, the company reduced electricity consumption per square metre across all its markets by 6.06%, compared to a year-or-year reduction of 2.41% in 2014.
In Spain, with the aim of continuing to hone its energy efficiency, the traditional lighting in place in more than 360 El Árbol stores and another 30 cash & carry stores was switched to LED technology. This entailed the installation of over 96,000 LED tubes in these stores, delivering the attendant reduction in consumption.
At these same establishments, the open freezers were replaced with more energy-efficient refrigeration cabinets, each of which cuts consumption by 15kWh/day. Specifically, 3,500 new cabinets were installed.
These two projects entailed investment of almost €8 million.
In Portugal, taking advantage of the refurbishment of the Minipreço Market and Minipreço Family stores, the company invested a little over €2.5 million in changing the refrigeration cabinets with a view to making these stores more energy efficient.
Also in Portugal, the capacitor banks were checked; as a result, this equipment was repaired at 53 stores and new equipment was installed in a further 50. Adjustments were made for summer temperatures at 74 stores and a refrigeration system audit was performed at 60 stores, a process set to continue in 2016. Against this backdrop, refrigeration cabinets were upgraded to more energy-efficient models at 41 stores.
Projects were also carried out at the Torres Novas, Valongo and Alverca warehouses, specifically introducing LED lighting and variable speed drive compressors. Warehouse consumption was cut by 457 MWh (-4%) in 2015 and is expected to come down further in 2016 with the execution of LED switches at another two warehouses.
The company also undertook major energy efficiency overhauls in its stores and warehouses in China, investing close to €200,000 to this end. August marked the culmination of the project of switching conventional light bulbs for LED technology in 200 stores. This drive to introduce greater energy efficiency across the Chinese store base was accompanied by other reforms such as the replacement of fridge and freezer cabinets in more than 30 stores, driving savings per establishment of 2,044 kWh–3,650 kWh per annum.
In the offices within the Chinese warehouses, 288 bulbs were upgraded to LED technology, driving savings of 1,452 kWh/month. The implementation of new efficiency measures at the logistics centre was rounded out with the fine-tuning of the compressor control and repair system, delivering year-end savings of 9.3%.
In 2015, DIA continued to employ innovative measures to prevent environmental degradation and promote profitable and sustainable growth in parallel. The company made responsible use of resources by means of sustainability and eco-design criteria, thanks to which its materials consumption fell by 29% to 15.402 million kilograms.
The group uses the shelf-ready packaging model under which all secondary and tertiary packaging can be used for both transportation and display purposes, with the exception of frozen goods packaging.
In recent years, DIA has been working on the design and rollout of a business process management suite (BPMS) to integrate various modules related with the development of private-label goods (quality, packaging, sales, etc.); this tool is called Auraportal. Implementation of this system is enabling DIA to gradually digitalise its documents, delivering massive savings in paper consumption.
In the Portuguese warehouses the company ran a campaign to reduce the consumption of plastic film by replacing it with reusable tape. The result was a 32,289 kilogram reduction in the use of plastic film to 25,205 kilograms.
Awareness about resource consumption
In order to encourage responsible consumption of material resources, DIA organises a number of events to raise employee awareness of the need to use resources rationally and handle waste adequately.
Against this backdrop, DIA Brazil embarked on a project called “Sustainable DIA” encompassing activities, campaigns and policies to promote preservation of environmental, social and economic resources. The first step was the installation of garbage sorting container bins at the national centre. Employees were also provided with glasses to prevent the use of disposable cups.
DIA manages waste following an established hierarchy of priorities, prioritising prevention and avoiding elimination to the extent possible. Implementation of a waste sorting system in order to facilitate waste management helped ensure that all of the group’s plastic, board and paper waste was recycled in 2015. Moreover, 100% of electric devices and 93.97% of scrap were recycled.
In 2015, DIA took up a seat on the Board of Ecoembes, from which it contributes to the packaging eco-design and recycling effort in Spain.
Ecoembes is a non-profit organisation devoted to packaging recovery throughout Spain. Its mission is to provide society with a collective response on the part of economic agents to the environmental concerns deriving from the consumption of packaged household products, helping deliver compliance with legally binding objectives while getting business to make more effective use of limited resources.