Working with United Nations and building a sustainable business model | Enel Group

Working with United Nations and building a sustainable business model

Sustainability has been at the centre of our business model and our way of working for years.
In 2015, the United Nations approved the Global Agenda for Sustainable Development and relevant Sustainable Development Goals (or SDGs), to be achieved by 2030. We immediately started to integrate the 17 UN SDGs into our company policies, defining specific targets.
They have become a compass for our work, to strengthen our commitment to an increasingly sustainable business model.

In the autumn of 2019 we launched the world’s first general purpose SDG-linked bonds – inviting the market to invest in our achievements, measured against four specific goals. The first was a 1.5 billion dollar bond on the US market and, in Europe, the second was a multi-tranche issue of 2.5 billion euros. The success of these bonds on both sides of the Atlantic has shown that we are on the right track. But more importantly, it has shown the rest of the world that investing in sustainability is now also synonymous with economic value. 

The four goals that our performance is measured by

SDG 13: Climate action

Climate change is a global challenge that affects everyone, everywhere.

SDG 7: Affordable and clean energy

Energy is central to nearly every major challenge and opportunity.

SDG 9: Industry, innovation and infrastructure

Innovation and investments in infrastructure are crucial to sustainable development.

SDG 11: Sustainable cities and communities

All cities need to provide basic services, energy, housing and transportation for everyone.

Climate change is at the top of the list

Climate action (SDG 13) is the main challenge and opportunity for a company like us. Enel strengthened its leading position in the energy transition by ramping up its push towards decarbonisation, drastically cutting its emissions compared to 2017 levels, as certified in line with SBTi, a global initiative which validates corporate decarbonisation strategies. Accordingly, Enel is committed to a 70% reduction in its direct greenhouse gas emissions per kWh by 2030, and by 2050 we will reach full decarbonisation.

Of course, we are increasing our capacity to generate Affordable and clean energy (SDG 7). By adding a further 14.1 GW of renewable capacity over the next three years,  60% of our consolidated installed capacity will be renewable by the end of 2022.  

But besides the way we produce energy, the sustainable growth of society depends on Industry, innovation and infrastructure (SDG 9). To this end we have installed more than 44.7 million smart meters and we are investing 11.8 billion euros in innovation and digitalisation over the next three years.

As for Sustainable cities and communities (SDG 11), we are investing in a range of new electrification services. These will bring 10.1 GW of demand response capacity and 736,000 electric vehicle charging points by the end of 2022 – allowing consumers to play a central role in the way energy is stored, shared and used more efficiently.


Sustainability is an all-inclusive undertaking

Enel is committed every day to promoting social and economic development – reaching out to disadvantaged communities in different parts of the world. Besides bringing access to clean energy where it is most needed, we have invested heavily in support for Quality education (SDG 4) and Decent work and economic growth (SDG 8). By working in this way, the progress of each person is an invaluable part of the progress of humanity as a whole.


A thousand ways to bring change

Searching for shared value for the Company and its stakeholders provides an opportunity to combine competitiveness with the long-term social value creation. 

Searching for shared value for the Company and its stakeholders provides an opportunity to combine competitiveness with the long-term social value creation.

With approximately 1,600 projects in the various countries where we operate, we actively contribute to the development and social and economic growth of its regions, including the expansion of infrastructure, education and training programs, initiatives aimed at social inclusion, and projects supporting cultural and economic life in line with the SDGs. Partnerships with organisations operating at the local level that promote regional development through innovative and tailored interventions are a fundamental tool for these projects. Take our involvement in Liter of Light or Barefoot College.

Closer to home, we have numerous FuturE projects that bring new life to disused power plants. An inclusive approach towards the stakeholders also means circular economy solutions: an infrastructure of decommissioned power plants can be transformed in other ways to benefit the community, while involving a number of different stakeholders.


A new pathway to socially responsible investment in Africa’s growth

In order to increase the funding of renewable energy products in Africa, we are currently taking part in an initiative to facilitate European investors. RenewAfrica is based on a public and private sector programme that aims to provide energy access to a large population that has none. The ultimate goal is to reduce poverty and promote growth and development in a sustainable way. This is yet another example of how the pursuit of sustainability can be beneficial for everyone. 

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