News April 29, 2020

How COVID-19 was met by GreenTech Industries

While many businesses are currently struggling, the Green Tech industry has been coping with the crisis rather well. Energy, drinking water and sanitation networks, waste collection and treatment businesses are the least affected. This can be explained, for a part, by the fact that these are activities remain essential in the smooth running of the country, and as such, operators must ensure continuity of service.

The industry remains optimistic

They might face a decline in their activities as the situation evolves over the course of the next few months, but this crisis will unlikely cause any real financial trouble for the industry. The only exception to that is the industrial waste recycling sector, which has been affected by the closure of many businesses in the industry, leading to a drop in waste production and therefore in recycling.

The economic slowdown, particularly in the industrial sector, also impacted electricity consumption. In France, electricity consumption dropped by 15% since the beginning of quarantine. The latest Recruitment Sector Barometer in energy and environment businesses confirms the industry’s confidence towards the future: Paris Region has registered a 54% increase in job offers since the beginning of the epidemic in the energy and environmental businesses.

Big corporate groups are joining the fight against COVID-19

Since the beginning of the pandemic, large corporations have been committed to provide support to the healthcare staff and vulnerable people. Large energy providers even went a step further:

EDF GROUP is an integrated electricity company. The EDF Group Foundation has set up a 2-million Euro emergency and solidarity fund. It will operate both in France and abroad and will, as of now, commit 1 million Euros to the provision of emergency assistance to healthcare personnel and to the most vulnerable members of the public, as well as another 1 million Euros, at the end of the public-health crisis, in support of the most vulnerable.

TOTAL, a French integrated oil and gas company with worldwide presence is supporting healthcare professionals of French hospitals mobilized in the fight against the Covid-19 virus by supplying them with gasoline vouchers worth up to €50 million. In addition, the Total Foundation will contribute €5 million to the Pasteur Institute and to hospital and health associations involved in the fight against Covid-19.

SUEZ, a French multinational corporation, expert in the water and waste sectors, created a solidarity plan. Suez offers to reinforce support measures and to provide additional financial resources to fight Covid-19 involving all its stakeholders (clients, employees, suppliers, managers, shareholders) through:

> The donation of one fourth of the salaries of the Chief Executive Officer and Comex members towards initiatives to fight Covid-19 during the lockdown period,

> A reduction of the dividend of almost a third to 0.45€ per share, proposed to the general assembly.

TEREOS S.A. is a world leader in the production of sugars, alcohols, ethanol and starch-based products. TEREOS launched in 7 of its factories the production of hydroalcoholic solutions or disinfectant alcohol made available free of charge to French regional health agencies and hospitals experiencing critical situations.

Even more so than technology, solidarity is really the backbone that will help everyone get through these unprecedented times. From home-made face masks and protective shields, to the distribution of meals to the most vulnerable, initiatives to help others are springing up throughout the Paris Region. With the array of initiatives and innovative solutions, plus the major implications of large corporations and donations, we will hopefully soon be on the cusp of returning to normalcy.

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