Olivier Jouis, head of environmental affairs at Eurocopter
How has the creation of
an Environmental Affairs
Department upped the ante?
Olivier Jouis: Eurocopter didn’t wait for
the environment to become a pressing issue
for society: A long way back, the Group was
already making significant efforts to improve the environment,
either by lowering noise footprints through the Fenestron, which
then set the standard for the industry, or by complying with the
strictest environmental requirements (ISO 14001). What’s new
is the way the environment is perceived at Eurocopter: It is now
considered a strategic tool, which is likely to be a springboard for
growth, and will provide an opportunity to create value for our
clients. But implementing this strategy will be a long and complex
process: We have to re-examine all our procedures from an environmental
point of view.
My mission can be summed up like this: To make sense of and
add value to Eurocopter’s environmental performance. We won’t
see results straightaway. This is a continuous improvement drive
built around seven dimensions, the seven Ps: Product, People,
Procurement, Process, Plant, Profit and Perception.
Which are the priority dimensions
O. J.: Plant and Procurement, where Eurocopter has already
laid the foundations through the ISO 14001 certification of its
European sites and compliance with the EU’s REACH regulation.
Concerning Process, Eurocopter wants to build an environmentally
effective organization–the goal is to ensure carbon
neutral growth by lowering our emissions and consumption of
non-renewable resources. Product is the most visible dimension,
where the expectations of our customers are the highest. To meet
these expectations, Eurocopter has launched a major innovation
program including important technological breakthroughs. With
the support of EADS, we are exploring several avenues of applied
research: hybrid engines, “greener” engines and active blades.
But the cornerstone of everything we do is still People, because
nothing will be achieved unless everybody gets behind these environmental
goals. To reach our goals, environmental criteria will be
included in the annual targets set for every member of staff.
What about Profit and Perception?
O. J.: Profit will take on its full meaning from 2012 onwards,
when Eurocopter will have to reduce its carbon footprint or buy
increased quota allocations. This way of putting a price on environmental
performance will provide a powerful reason for financing
projects to reduce our carbon dependence. As for Perception, this
area is crucial because this is where we make sense of what we do
and add value to all our hard work. Eurocopter’s reputation is very
good and must remain so. Perception is therefore about credibility
and consistency: Walking the walk and talking the talk.
The environment is on everyone’s lips at the moment and people’s
expectations are high. But Eurocopter is putting itself in a good
position to integrate environmental performance in its economic
model. We have a goal: We want to turn environmental restrictions
into a competitive edge so that we stay world number one.