Principality of Monaco: How can the industries help the Energy Transition Mission?

«To support this transition, the Prince decided to establish the Mission for Energy Transition, which manages projects to limit greenhouse gas emissions and develop renewable energy»

What is the Energy Transition Mission?

On the path to carbon neutrality envisioned by 2050, Monaco is working to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by fifty-five percent by 2030. To do so they analyzed the main emitters, explains Annabelle Jaeger-Seydoux, director of the government’s energy transition Mission.

«The national action plan focuses primarily on the three sectors responsible for the highest greenhouse gas emissions. Road transport, waste treatment and energy consumption in buildings. These account for around 90% of the country’s emissions», she precises.

As much as looking for and using renewable resources can always improve; Jaeger-Seydoux also warns about decreasing consumption and implementing citizens’ responsible actions to protect the environment. The established Mission engages in the management of projects that limit greenhouse gas emissions and develop renewable energy. Therefore, the Mission manages the National Green Fund to implement specific large-scale projects commensurate with the set targets, the director highlights. 

Monaco Principality background and environmental commitment 

The Principality and the person of Prince Albert II have long been committed to the preservation of the environment and the fight against climate change, the director explains. She also recalls some key moment that highlight Monaco government dedication, also on the international scene.

Some examples are the ratification of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in 1994 and the Kyoto Protocol in 2006. But also, the Climate and Energy Plan that the Principality introduced in 2008; awarded with the European Energy Award certification. «As a follow-up to these actions, and as part of signing of the Paris Agreement in 2016; the Principality has set itself some new, very ambitious objectives», Jaeger-Seydoux adds. 

The studies on which the goals have been developed

As there has been interest and motivation from Monegasque stakeholders to take action to reduce the Principality’s emissions; they have been involved in the process of developing the Energy Transition White Paper. In January 2018, the Mission for Energy Transition (MTE) together with the guidelines provided by the Sovereign Prince, designed this text.

The National Energy Transition Pact aims to mobilize residents, workers, students, businesses, institutions and associations in Monaco, explains the director. She continues: «The White Paper on Energy Transition represents the first stage in the mobilization efforts of the Monegasque community. For instance, it seeks to bring together the perceptions, actions and expectations of stakeholders in the country to define a shared roadmap that will take us to 2050».

Research to define priority actions to implement was conducted between August and December 2016. Furthermore, interviews were carried out with fifty-nine organizations and approximately ninety individuals. In January 2017, five collaborative workshops were organized in different sectors; with the aim of reaching a shared prognosis and identifying levers on which to act, she points out. Then these results were presented and published in the White Paper on Energy Transition, released on March twenty-three, 2017.

Involvement of local sectors and tailor-made solutions

It seems obvious to state that every industry operating in the area could act to participate in this plan. But in fact, the National Pact provides an action plan for sixteen specific sectors. Construction; architecture; technical study offices; energy services; building management; healthcare; hospitality; event planning; industry; mass retail; tertiary; the Monaco Public Force; residences for seniors; schools; NGOs and public institutions.

At the moment, more than 250 of Monaco’s businesses have joined the project. The concrete actions drawn up for the reduction of emissions are ten. Focused on the three aspects of mobility, waste, energy and a general category called multi-impact.

Jaeger-Seydoux explains this aspect by saying: «For example, architects can commit to designing more energy efficient; bioclimatic buildings; and the hospitality sector can strive to reduce air-conditioning and eliminate single-use plastic bottles for customers. Furthermore businesses in the tertiary sector can commit to promoting green transport options; for their teams’ commuting or work-related travel, sort and reduce their office waste at the source, or switch to LED lighting and renewable energy systems».

Why is the involvement of the fashion sector critical?

The government decided to partner with the Chambre Monégasque de la Mode. Highlighting the relevance regulations in that sector can have on emissions. For instance, the fashion sector, by dialoguing with institutions, has been able to analyze its criticalities; understanding that most of the emissions reside in the design and transport stages.

«The fashion industry is one of the largest, most dynamic and influential industries on the planet. Therefore should also be empowered to play a key role in driving the transition to a more sustainable future». Explains Mme Federica Nardoni Spinetta, Chamber President and Founder.

She goes on to state the importance of changing the energy consumption patterns of Monaco’s fashion houses. In order to contribute to the transaction of the Principality. The starting point for achieving zero net CO2 emissions in 2050. To ask companies to conduct a full carbon balance assessment of their operations and estimate their GHG emissions.

The required change in the production process

The Chambre Monégasque de la Mode has established a list of practical actions that each brand can implement in its production process. The major focus is on materials, for which there is a demand to reduce impact by finding eco-responsible alternatives.

In accordance with this, brands are also encouraged to produce with recycling and up-cycling systems. This means, according to Nardoni Spinetta, focusing on design for circularity. Meaning making products with bio-based materials, with recycled content, or in any case with technologies that save resources.

Promoting local production is another aspect on which the Pact focuses. The Chamber’s Founder confirms that several Monegasque brands have already undertaken this shift in manufacturing.

Lampoon Magazine , Climate activists Vanessa Nakate of Uganda and Greta Thunberg of Sweden gather with other young people during a 'Fridays for Future' protest in Milan, Italy, Lapresse
Climate activists Vanessa Nakate of Uganda and Greta Thunberg of Sweden gather with other young people during a ‘Fridays for Future’ protest in Milan, Italy, Lapresse

The concrete actions that brands must implement

«Among the priority actions, there is the measurement of CO2 emissions; the structuring of energy efficiency plans and plant modernization; the improvement of traceability of products and materials throughout the chain», the President points out.

Another set of actions established for brands that adhere to the Pact concerns the management of work locations. Improving waste management in their own offices and warehouse; converting the premises to LED lighting and better manage their energy consumption, are two key issues.

But focusing on small changes, such as eliminating single-use plastic cups and plastic water bottles or paper documents in favor of digital, is also essential. Nardoni Spinetta continues highlighting some examples from the local fashion brands.

FitMe Monte-Carlo has created a line of luxury sportswear using 100 percent regenerated, bio-based or biodegradable fabrics. For instance, this resulted in a forty-five percent reduction in CO2 emissions and a thirty-nine percent decrease in water consumption.

Other examples of activities carried out are those of the brand Banana Moon. It created a collection produced with old fabric stocks; while Inessa Creations Monaco, on the occasion of the European Day for Waste Reduction; collaborated with the Monegasque Red Cross to show how to reuse, recycle and donate while avoiding waste.

Lampoon reporting: a shared system for the energy transition

Although considered one by one, the actions to implement under the Energy Transition Pact developed by the Principality of Monaco may appear almost ordinary. The creation of a synergy between the working forces appears fundamental.

Important is the government action. Through the creation of an ad hoc mission, it has established common guidelines for the various sectors active in Monaco. The initial analysis hightilghted the critical points to resolve. And the stipulated Pact to focus on concrete aspects to improve that could unite both companies and non-governmental organization.

« It is a demonstration of the State’s firm determination, which must extend to all of us; without hampering our country’s economic development but instead actually creating new opportunities», Jaeger-Seydoux points out.

Several times there has been a lack of political action. To support the goals set and to monitor and choose the actions to implement to achieve them. Therefore, this example makes it clear that the journey to a more responsible society must be driven by government commitment; which chooses the goals to be achieved by ensuring that they are carried out.

Mission for Energy Transition

Established by the Sovereign Prince and directed by Annabelle Jaeger-Seydoux. The mission for energy transition is developing projects to limit greenhouse gas emissions in favor of renewable energy use. 

Chambre Monégasque de la Mode

An institution founded by Mme Federica Nardoni Spinetta in order to put together the fashion brands active in that area. This also decided to partner with the government for the Mission for Energy Transition.

Chiara Narciso

The writer does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organization that would benefit from this article.

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