Our understanding of managing the impacts of our activities is based on consideration of environmental challenges at each stage, starting with the preliminary phases of a project, but also in the operation of our installations. This means that, from the pre-construction phase, and then on to the operation of our installations, we include environmental considerations, with strict application of:
We are constantly searching for new virtuous solutions.
improvement in our environmental performance in 2019
waste recovered in 2019
Since 2006, we have had a policy of sorting and reducing waste. Our commitment is based on two essential principles:
recovering and recycling waste;
involving all staff and service provider companies.
That approach has enabled us to recover more than 60% of our waste.
As part of our desire to set an example, we have introduced actions to reduce the noise level of our installations. To do that, we have called in professionals working in the field of acoustics to develop and introduce solutions which have proved their worth. For example, we have installed silencers in the flues of the compression stations at Sauveterre and Lussagnet.
To operate efficient management of polluted soils, you have to know the state of your soil. Since 2009 we have been conducting a systematic campaign to analyse soils, even though there is no such obligation in the regulations. It has enabled us to identify polluted zones and to instigate clean-up operations. Innovative treatment solutions have been adopted, such as the re-use of materials from excavated soil in cement works.
As part of our ISO 14001 certified environmental management system, we are also taking action to control and manage the quality of water and soils. Detailed instructions are therefore sent out to contracting companies and operators. Our aim is to manage any spillage risks through various measures such as:
storage of chemicals on spill trays;
anti-pollution kits on sites and on heavy plant;
raising awareness among internal staff and teams working on construction sites;
carrying out anti-pollution kit deployment exercises;
the reporting of any chemical spillage or any discovery of previous pollution and the introduction of suitable treatment.
Our gas storage facilities at Lussagnet and Izaute are located about 500 metres underground, in a geological aquifer (water-impregnated porous rock) known as a “reservoir”. We therefore continuously monitor the effects of our gas storage activities on the aquifer, drawing particularly on the skills of our Geoscience department.
Our procedure stipulates in particular that we should monitor:
the pressure in the reservoir (in the area occupied by the gas) and the overlying strata:
the pressure in the aquifer (around the area where the gas is present);
the water and gas quality.
To understand all these issues, we carry out:
research work on the regional hydrogeology with the BRGM and the Adour-Garonne water agency (GAIA) project;
research work on the chemical and biological impact of the gas on the aquifer, with the University of Pau and the Pays de l’Adour (UPPA) in particular.