Naval Group commits to environmental protection

Naval Group considers that addressing environmental issues contributes to the company’s performance.

This is obvious for production sites, all located close to the sea or close to a river, it is a question of coherence when the group positions itself on the marine renewable energy market. It is also a competitive advantage when this concern is integrated into the products and activities.

Naval Group is developing centrally the Group’s strategy within the Performance and Quality department, and is involving all employees in this initiative, capitalising on a network of environment managers across France.

Since 2008, all Naval Group sites and activities located in France are ISO 14001 certified.

Objectives for 2015-2017

To illustrate its commitments, Naval Group has set ambitious goals for 2015 – 2017.

First objective: zero environmental accidents

The management of industrial risks is our priority. There are 150 industrial installations spread across our sites. None are classified SEVESO. They are duly regulated and regularly inspected by regulatory authorities. Risks have all been identified and analysed, and risk-control measures have been implemented.

Since 2012, no environmental accidents with significant impact on the environment occurred, whilst incidents resulting in a temporary impact are steadily decreasing (thresholds briefly exceeded or limited localised pollution).

Naval Group’s primary objective is to avoid accidents altogether. Since 2012, the numbers of incidents with a temporary environmental impact have steadily decreased.

Second objective: 50% of programmes pro-actively embracing eco-design

Eco-design is at the heart of our environmental policy, representing a competitive advantage. Beyond the strict compliance to regulatory requirements, eco-design firstly increases the attractiveness of products due to their energy efficiency and the reduction of waste and emissions. It also enables anticipating their recycling under the best possible conditions through the selection of the most appropriate materials and a thorough awareness of dangerous substances. Today, every second vessel program and every fourth R&D project are directly impacted. In 2016, two environmental analyses were initiated on two flagship projects from the Marine Renewable Energy line.

“Naval Group is ISO 14001 certified both for the management of its sites and the design of its products, and as such represents a precursor for the naval sector. This initiative stems from the desire of some of our clients to adopt eco-responsible innovation, with the combination of the “lifecycle” and “total cost” approaches allowing them to reduce the final bill. For example, reducing a vessel’s operational power consumption promotes greater autonomy at sea; the selection of recyclable materials right from the design phase avoids significant processing costs at the end of the lifecycle. In 2016, our goal  to address environmental aspects over 50% of our projects was achieved. Intermediate-size frigates and the Australian Future Submarine programme take into account the environmental dimension in the definition of their technical requirements.” Gaëlle Rousseau, expert and manager of the Environment & Eco-design sector of activity
Third objective: reduce environmental impact

The emission of greenhouse gases (GHGs)

To contribute to the fight against global warming, Naval Group has decided to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 10% within three years. To reach this goal, reduction initiatives are being conducted in the following three main areas:

  • Gas (Scope 1) and electricity (Scope 2) consumption.
  • Business travel (Scope 3).
  • Home-work commuting (Scope 3).

Note: An objective of a 10% reduction in gas and electricity consumption has been set for 2015-2017 while each site will have its own Company Mobility Plan by the end of 2016.

Concerning VOC (Volatile Organic Compounds), sulphur dioxide (SO2) and nitrogen oxide (N0x) emissions, analyses are performed annually and a national working group has been set up to propose ideas for improvements.

The consumption of electrical power

Naval Group fully recognises the energy challenges and their incidence on the climate and has set an ambitious goal of a 10% reduction in consumption over the period 2015-2017.

Following the example of the site of Lorient, which worked on the reduction of its “footprint” in 2016 by asking its employees to switch off all equipment not requiring continual operation over the weekend, all sites located within France will also participate in this exercise in 2017. In Lorient, this trial enabled a 50% reduction of the site’s energy footprint. This initiative will allow us to showcase the sectors for which non-negligible power consumption savings can be achieved.


In application of the principles of the circular economy, Naval Group is seeking to reduce and better recycle its waste. An overall recycling goal (materials and energy) has thus been set for the entire group (≥ 70%) with a minimum per site of 50%.

Dangerous waste is particularly difficult to recycle, which is why Naval Group continues to reduce waste at the source, with the goal to reduce them by 10% between 2015 and 2017.

Water consumption

The quantity of water used for cooling installation steadily decrease each year with most installations now operating on a closed circuit.

The slight increase observed in 2015 was due to leaks, which were detected and repaired belatedly.

Only the Indret site continues to pump large volumes from the Loire River when thermal-machine tests are performed on the site; the volumes used can thus vary significantly from one year to another. In 2014 and 2015, the years over which all new systems on the Barracuda submarine were certified, consumption was particularly high.


Naval Group has always been naturally interested in biodiversity questions due to the location of its sites and the nature of its activities. Each industrial site is located in proximity to a natural land or marine reserve, listed as a result of the rarity or fragility of the indigenous species, both fauna and flora, and their habitats.

In each of these cases, the industrial and economic decisions are not taken to the detriment of environmental protection, and both dimensions are taken into account, addressing the needs of each.

Special attention is given to Marine Renewable Energy (MRE). This is a recent and fast-developing activity for which it is not always possible to anticipate the impact on the environment. This is why for each of its projects Naval Group studies the living habitat and the activities, to perform impact studies and adapt the project with the aim of protecting the environment and ensuring societal acceptability.

In this domain, Naval Group is a partner in several projects aimed at improving the knowledge of habitats, in particular with the “France Energies Marines” institute.

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