L’Oréal, the brand which has devoted itself to beauty for over a century, has launched L’Oréal for the future – an unprecedented relief project that aims to aid the community in dealing with the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on their livelihoods. The programme will focus on two main areas, namely women empowerment and environmental protection, which will be supported as follows:
- Assisting organizations that support highly vulnerable women, the first victims of the social and economic crisis generated by the pandemic, with the creation of a €50 million charitable endowment fund
- Contributing to the regeneration of damaged natural ecosystems and efforts to prevent climate change, with €100 million dedicated to environmental impact investing.
Chairman and CEO of L’Oréal, Jean-Paul Agon, gave further details: “Over the coming months, our societies will face social crises giving rise to situations of great human suffering, particularly for the most vulnerable. At the same time, we are fully aware that environmental challenges are increasingly pressing. It is essential not to step back from the sustainable transformation that the world needs. We therefore wish to reaffirm our commitment to the environment and to the preservation of biodiversity, and to help mitigate the social crisis for women. These two causes reflect the values and the historic commitment of L’Oréal.”
€50 million to support highly vulnerable women
The L’Oréal Group, which has been unwaveringly committed to the support of women and women empowerment over the years, has highlighted the disproportional effect of the Covid-19 crisis on women, in particular regarding their job and income losses. Women are at the heart of a large proportion of single-parent households, and with unemployment rife at the moment, they are being increasingly forced to turn to food banks to meet their most basic needs. Simultaneously, there has been a worldwide increase in domestic and sexual violence caused by lockdown measures.
To directly help struggling women, L’Oréal is creating a €50 million charitable endowment fund to support field organizations and local charities in their efforts to fight poverty, help women achieve social and professional integration, provide emergency assistance to female refugees and disabled women, prevent violence against women, and support victims.
Alexandra Palt, Chief Corporate Responsibility Officer of the L’Oréal Group, says: “The Covid-19 crisis spares no one, but it also exacerbates existing inequalities, with particularly devastating effects on people who were already struggling socially or economically or are victims of abuse, especially women. It is essential that we take action to support the most vulnerable women. This social crisis has not eclipsed the need for a strong commitment to the environment. If we are to find a sustainable and inclusive way to move past this crisis, we must also focus on preventing climate change and the erosion of biodiversity, which now threaten to even more profoundly and violently shake our lives, our societies, and our economies, once again with women as the first victims.”
€100 million dedicated to environmental impact investing
In addition to its ongoing long-term efforts to reduce its environmental impact as part of its Sharing Beauty with All sustainable development programme, the L’Oréal Group has made the decision to divert €100 million into impact investing, in order to act upon these two key environmental challenges:
- Regenerating damaged natural ecosystems: €50 million will be used to finance marine and forest ecosystem restoration projects that also create new social and economic development opportunities for the populations that depend on these ecosystems (developing sustainable agriculture and fishing, eco-tourism, sale of carbon credits). This L’Oréal Fund for Nature Regeneration aims to restore one million hectares of degraded ecosystems, capture 15 to 20 million tonnes of CO2 and create hundreds of job opportunities by 2030.
- Preventing climate change: €50 million will be directed to financing for projects linked to the circular economy. With this fund, the L’Oréal Group aims to contribute to the quest for solutions and the creation of business models that support the development of a circular economy, particularly in terms of recycling and management of plastic waste.
The L’Oréal Group plans to present its new sustainability program for 2030 in late June, which will complete the L’Oréal for the Future plan, ensuring that all of L’Oréal’s activities are respectful of the planetary boundaries.
Sharing Beauty With All
As part of the sustainable development programme that L’Oréal launched in 2013, the brand made tangible commitments for 2020 covering all of its impacts and its entire value chain, from product design to ingredient sourcing to production and distribution.
By the end of 2019, it had achieved the following results:
- 78% reduction in CO2 emissions from its factories and distribution centres compared to 2005, with a 37% increase in production volumes during the same period.
- Improved social or environmental profile for 85% of its products launched in 2019, since all new Group products are developed using the ecodesign tool SPOT.
- 90,635 people from struggling communities have received support in finding employment thanks to L’Oréal’s Solidarity Sourcing programme.
- For the fourth year running, L’Oréal has received three As, the best score possible, across all of the CDP’s ratings on three key areas: climate protection, sustainable water management, and forests. L’Oréal is the only company worldwide to have earned the CDP’s 3 A rating for four years running.
With this sustainable development programme, as well as its strong commitment to ethics, its policy of promoting diversity, and its philanthropic endeavors supported by the L’Oréal Foundation and the brands, the Group contributes to 15 of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals set in 2015 by the United Nations.
To find out more about the brand and its projects, visit L’Oréal’s website.
Image 1 © Wilmotte et Associés Architectes