Lisbon, 17 of December of 2020 – This morning, Portugal ́s President, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, attended GS1 Portugal ́s first Lean & Green award ceremony.
Lean & Green consists of a certification program for the sustainability initiatives companies and organizations propose in order to reduce carbon dioxide emissions in their logistic operations.
In this morning ́s session, the President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa distinguished transport and logistic company SANTOSEVALE for joining the program and therefore assuming the responsibility of achieving concrete and verifiable reduction measures during the next 5 years. He also awarded Delta Cafés and Nestlé Portugal with a Lean & Green star for achieving a 20% reduction of their CO2 emissions through the program.
This European initiative entered Portugal in late 2019 through GS1 Portugal with the goal of making a significant contribution towards fulfilling the objectives established in the Paris Agreement of reducing as much as possible the carbon footprint. For each reduction tier reached, the company is awarded with a star of a maximum total of 5.
In the event, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa praised GS1 Portugal for the work they ́ve been carrying out for the last 35 years. “One must praise GS1 Portugal ́s mission; they pioneered the introduction of the barcode in Portugal and now they once again are in the forefront in promoting company sustainability”, affirmed the President.
For Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, sustainability and climate change are matters that are directly related to quality of life and “surpass generations, borders and continents, representing one of the greatest challenges of the future”.
The President also reminded that “thanks to the lack of sensibility of some of the worlds ́ centres of decision, the Paris Agreement looked compromised”. He, however, ensured “Portugal was always in the front line in achieving those objectives” and as a result of that, he continued, “we will get there first”.
In what concerns sustainability ́s role in facing the pandemic crisis Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa had no doubts: “There are two paths: one is to recover socially and economically from the pandemic and crisis. The other, more ambitious, is to make use of the recovery and resilience to change the country and society. To find new ways to be more sustainable”.
Also, this morning, before the Lean & Green award ceremony, GS1 Portugal promoted a debate, supported in digital format, about “Circular Economy and “Sustainability”. The debate had jornalist Luís Ribeiro from magazine Visão as moderator, and as participants Ana Isabel Morais, CEO of Sociedade Ponto Verde; João Meneses, General Secretary of Conselho Empresarial para o Desenvolvimento Sustentável (BCSD Portugal); Paolo Fagnoni, CEO of Nestlé Portugal; Pedro Nazareth, General Manager of Electrão; Ricardo Neto, President of Novo Verde and Rui Miguel Nabeiro, CEO of Delta Cafés.
For over an hour, the six speakers spoke about measures their respective organizations have been implementing and the challenges they face in order to meet the desired goals. They highlighted, among other aspects, the necessity of making use of the pandemic to make sustainability and environmental impact synonymous with the organization ́s culture and strategy, to educate the consumer, to collaborate with other companies, to reduce the carbon footprint and to acknowledge that recycling is no longer enough. Throughout the session it was also clear that companies and brands with greater sustainability concern have shown themselves to be more competitive and resilient in a period of a pandemic crisis.
João de Castro Guimarães, GS1 Portugal ́s Executive Director, was honoured by the illustrious members of the panel and by the attendance of the President of the Republic of Portugal, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa and pointed out GS1 Portugal ́s role as companies ́ trusted advisor now also in matters of sustainability.
“Sustainability, as proven today, has been establishing itself as a crucial factor for company competitivity, encouraging them to take steps towards a future that balances economic, environmental, social and cultural factors not only due to legislation but also as a voluntary practice. In that sense, GS1 Portugal assumed this strategic priority and, among other measures, became Portugal ́s representative of the only certification project for companies and organizations with concrete, verifiable and auditable plans for reducing CO2 emissions in logistic activities, throughout the entire supply chain – the Lean & Green project”, concluded João de Castro Guimarães.