For the environment, we want to act positively by reducing our greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and offsetting them within our organizational operations.

Carbon-neutral business

iA Financial Group has been carbon-neutral since January 1, 2020. The “carbon-neutral business” certification attests that we have calculated and offset all our GHG emissions that could not be eliminated by our reduction measures in place. By doing this, the GHGs emitted by our direct and indirect activities are offset by investing in carbon credits. Through these carbon credits, we invest in reforestation, renewable energy and energy efficiency projects that have been rigorously selected by our partner Planetair.

It is important to make clear that offsetting does not give the right to pollute, nor does it seek to make GHG emissions more acceptable.

Two major projects to offset our emissions

In conjunction with our partner, Planetair, a leader in the fight against climate change, we are contributing to initiatives that make a real difference by investing in offsetting projects that reduce GHG emissions at the source.

Biomass project in Brazil

In Brazil, we’re supporting an energy efficiency project with Buenos Aires Ceramics, which produces ceramic bricks and tiles mainly for the regional market where the factory is located. The factory’s fuel replacement project was validated in April 2010 under the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) and the social carbon methodology.

Today, the project is Gold Standard certified. It avoids GHG emissions by replacing non-renewable biomass with renewable biomass to generate thermal energy in the ceramic firing process.

This project corresponds directly to certain UN goals, including SDG 8, decent work and economic growth, and SDG 13, climate action, which we have targeted among our priorities.

Biogas project in Thailand

On the Asian continent, we have selected another energy efficiency project, this time in the field of biogas. This project is Verified Carbon Standard certified and relates to anaerobic wastewater treatment. This technology was introduced at a starch factory with a total production capacity of 600 tonnes per day, which generates 5,000 m3 of wastewater each production day.

Normally, the wastewater is treated in cascading ponds with a retention time of more than a year. The minimum depth of the ponds is about 10 metres for the first two ponds and more than 3 metres from the water’s surface for the remaining ponds. However, thanks to the wastewater treatment technology used in the project, the wastewater is transformed into biogas, which can be used as energy, thus reducing GHG emissions by almost 40,000 tonnes per year.

Becoming carbon neutral: An employee-proposed initiative

On December 13, 2019, iA announced its commitment to offsetting its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions through the purchase of carbon credits and therefore becoming carbon neutral as of 2020. It was Sébastien Rodrigue of the Investor Relations and Public Affairs team that had proposed this initiative as an example of what a company can accomplish in the fight against climate change. This proposal immediately convinced Denis Ricard, President and Chief Executive Officer of iA Financial Group, who was thrilled with the idea and didn’t hesitate to deploy the necessary resources. In less than a month, this significant commitment became a reality thanks to a dynamic and motivated team of people.

Sustainability contributions in employee recruiting

As of January 2021, we have begun planting one tree for every new employee hired. In addition, our Talent Acquisition team has committed to supporting and promoting local businesses from the different territories served by iA Financial Group, and to exposing their products by offering 100% local welcome gifts to our new employees. Because of the diversity of our suppliers, new employees each discover different companies throughout the year, depending on the partnership in place when they are hired.