Updated: Feb 24
Does Sustainability pass through committed commerce and corporate eco-management? Yes, definitely it does. To comply with the ambitious targets fixed by Monaco's Government addressed to reduce greenhouse emissions and waste production through the banning of single-use plastics. Valérie Davenet, Director of Monaco's Government Department of Environment, highlighted: « To help economic actors in the implementation of these policies, the "Commerce Engagé®" label launched in 2016, followed by the "Restaurant Engagé®" label in 2020, are pushing eco-responsible commitments adapted to each stage of corporate transition ». It is a human and caring 'acknowledgment' based on specific criteria that implies concrete solutions and a dedicated technical support to foster more eco-responsible consuming styles, on the basis of rational consumption and waste prevention.
The number of participants increased exponentially and reached 100 in late summer. On the 2nd December 2022, the Department of the Environment and Ecoscience Provence, main sponsor, celebrated the achievement through a special meeting at Stars'N'Bars (engaged since 2017) in the presence of Céline Caron-Dagioni, Councillor, Minister of Equipment, Environment and Urban Planning, Valérie Davenet and Marjorie Crovetto, Deputy Mayor in charge of Living Environment and Sustainable Development at the Mairie de Monaco. A short film and a directory of all labeled businesses operating on the Monegasque territory was offered to the target audience. The movie production, directed by Franck Florino (filmmaker), focuses on eco-gestures by professionals from the point of view of Mr OneTeas, well-known Monegasque artist, who invites to plunge into the label under an unprecedented vision in order to encourage a responsible consumption and prevent food waste.
The illustrated directory made of black and white photos by Jean-Charles Vinaj, contains a presentation of labelling steps and lists all the labeled corporate realities in the Principality.
Engaged Commerce short movie by © Franck Florino:
« We wanted to shed light on the labeled establishments, to encourage them to continue their eco-responsible approach, but also to raise awareness of labels and let consumers know that a sustainable consumption solution exists in the Principality », concluded Valérie Davenet. Both labels, in fact, have set common targets, notably collecting and recycling, preserving resources, fighting any waste, promoting local dynamics and raising awareness among clients. Florists, hairdressers, pret-à-porter shops, booksellers, souvenir shops, pharmacies, grocery stores, butchers, fishmongers, bakeries, are some of the categories involved.
The logos shown on the storefronts and desks helps easily detecting professionals who committed themselves in the cause. Born about fifteen years ago, the Commerce Engagé® was launched by Ecoscience Provence, an association fond of pushing circular economy through innovation. It covers nine territories in France and in Monaco, gathering about seven hundred stakeholders promoting best practices and new initiatives.
The Principality of Monaco, in particular, is fully engaged in increasignly prohibiting the use of plastic tools as well as disposable cutlery, glasses, plates, bottles, etc. as well as paper receipts, meal vouchers and carte bleue. All that to achieve 100% plastic-free by 2030. A Kit Zéro Déchet is being distributed to all participants while they are invited to sign the Pacte National pour la Transition Energétique (National Pact for Energy Transition), a user-friendly Charter of Commitment which brings together all the actors by encouraging three main axes of energy transition: mobility, waste and energy. A novel digital platform "Coach Carbon du Pacte" (Pact Coach Carbon) that allows to make a personalised greenhouse gasses (GHG) emissions assessment, prerequisite to access the Pact as for companies, institutions and associations.
An increased number of public and private actions are being held in Monaco to boost a more sustainable approach through a network of actors and tools, notably: Ecoslowasting (startup), Carloapp, Cliiink (digital platform), MaConsigne (Governmental initiative) and La Consigne de Provence (Ecoscience Provence).
What's about an Environmental Label?
Eco-labelling guarantees the sustainable essence of products and services, something more and more appreciated by consumers that consider it as an added value. Their main mission is to increase corporate reputation providing a quite objective and reliable proof of a given company's sustainability engagement. That helps preventing from green-washing risks considering that they are usually double checked both internally, by an individual or a department in charge of, and externally, by credible third parties who monitor performances through regular audits. Having this type of 'green' certification can be extremely useful for your business since it makes it easier to access the Green Financing, all those economic tools (e.g.: banking, micro-credit, insurance and investment) addressed to the public, private and not-for-profit sectors prioritising sustainable development goals. Last but not least, a proper communication plan covering the whole supply chain can contribute to make a certain product and service more competitive in the market.
Eco-label is one of the sub-categories of the so-called environmental product labels, regulated by specific rules case by case. The Voluntary eco-labels "from cradle to grave" (ISO 14024) measure and certify the environmental impact of products and services throughout the life cycle externally audited. The Environmental self-declarations (ISO 14021) are carried out by producers, importers or product distributors without external auditing interventions. The Environmental product declarations or eco-profiles (ISO 14025) are based on predetermined parameters making them clear and comparable. They examine the environmental impacts associated with various aspects of the product life cycle. They are subject to a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) by independent bodies to comply with the ISO 14040 series standards.
The European Union Ecolabel, Blauer Engel and the Nordic Swan are some of the most popular environmentally friendly labels in Europe. ***
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By Maurice Abbati
Springer International Publishing