As we head back to school, new horizons are opening up. CSR, more than ever at the heart of our society's challenges, is part of the post-Covid solutions. Ever more responsible, companies must become regenerators of the living and the ecosystems that surround them. This is the challenge for CSR in the new school year 2021-22!
This new school year is opening with encouraging prospects: the incidence rate and the number of hospitalizations of coronavirus patients are decreasing as vaccination coverage expands, life seems to be returning to normal, with businesses, schools and the economy starting up again almost "as before". Only the mask, the distancing measures and the famous health pass remain to remind us that the epidemic is still there.
These 15 difficult months have left us tired, of course, sometimes depressed, and with many uncertainties. But this ordeal was also a pivotal moment for life changes, ruptures and reflections on the meaning of his action. The crisis has given rise to major, ambitious and meaningful projects, now ready to be deployed in a society that has changed. More proactive, more realistic too. Aware that behind the words, actions are necessary.
After more than a year of dormant action plans, investment freezes and even budget cuts, this third quarter of 2021 should close an unprecedented chapter in the history of the world and herald a year 2022 that is resolutely focused on the future. For example, the World Conservation Congress to be held in Marseilles from September 3 will welcome over a thousand participants - heads of state, NGOs and citizens from 160 countries - who will come to set a new global framework for biodiversity and nature conservation.
This event, organized by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), will cover such essential themes as the safeguarding and restoration of marine and terrestrial species, adaptation to climate change, freshwater conservation and the optimization of economic and financial systems for sustainability. This congress will result in 128 concrete global recommendations that will help define the next targets for biodiversity protection by 2030. It will build momentum ahead of the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and the Glasglow Climate Conference, scheduled for October and November 2021.
In Madagascar, a global biodiversity hotspot, a multi-year program to safeguard ecosystems is being carried out by the CEPOVETT group and local partners, near its EPSILON/ CEPOVETT production site. Home to more than 250,000 species, 70% of which are endemic, the island has 294 species of birds and 247 species of amphibians. Its gigantic baobabs (of which 7 species can be found on the island), its exceptional primates - such as lemurs - or its cultural heritage make Madagascar a territory of rich and unique biodiversity, where an extraordinary fauna and flora have flourished for thousands of years. Its tropical rainforests (in the east of the country) and dry forests (in the south and west) are home to exceptional ecosystems unfortunately subjected to years of deforestation have weakened its biotope.
So many reasons to preserve these spaces and to engage in a reforestation program. The protection of biodiversity plays an essential role in the fight against climate change. Ecosystems are important carbon sinks and allow living organisms to adapt to the impacts of climate change. In addition to safeguarding living organisms and existing ecosystems, the challenge of the approach is to provide control and monitoring tools to evaluate, over time, the work carried out to replant habitats, regenerate primary forests and measure the socio-economic impacts on local populations (improvement of their living conditions, tourist attraction, job creation, etc.).
Through these initiatives, the will to act now for the protection of the planet, the living and the biodiversity, of which man is a part, is expressed. The pandemic has indeed highlighted the absolute necessity to better respect the balances and interdependencies between living organisms, species and territories (notably the exploitation of resources).
If 2021 was a year filled with uncertainty, the year 2022 will bring the hopes of a renewal of all generations willing to rebuild a more sustainable, fair and desirable world. The question of CSR is no longer asked, it is practiced step by step. Responsible companies have gone beyond the diagnosis stage to act today on the levers of evolution and transformation of their business model to become, tomorrow, regenerative companies.