Given the urgency of the climate crisis, our main priority is to become carbon-positive. But we also recognise that carbon is only one piece of the sustainability puzzle — in order to restore our relationship with nature, we also need to protect and enhance biodiversity.
Alongside the climate crisis, we also see an urgent need to address the biodiversity crisis that’s endangering species and farmlands the world over. Every natural environment preserved is a small win in the larger movement to preserve biodiversity. That’s why, when approaching developments, we always involve ecologists in the design and construction process. Whether that results in green shelters, improved water management, increased greenery ratios on sites, bird houses, native plants, beehives or full-scale urban forests, we depend heavily on their recommendations to help nature to thrive and grow alongside our buildings and facilities.
As cities continue to creep further out into nature, we consider it a responsibility to reintroduce pockets of wilderness into urban areas. To contribute to this effort, we’ve begun collaborating with biologists and ecological designers such as Urban Forests in Belgium, who have helped us to start a healthy young forest of more than 6,000 trees at the Puurs Logistics Center.
Another way we reintroduce wilderness is by equipping our sites with beehives to support the world’s pollinators on their crucial mission. We do this to allow the pollination of wild plants, encourage our customers’ employees and communities to engage with nature, and offer them an organic, local and high-quality product.
As e-commerce becomes more and more in-demand, logistics providers will become increasingly motivated to locate their facilities closer to urban centers. To minimise the impact this will have on nature, we’re working on minimising land consumption by verticalising our logistics space. Building upwards — rather than outwards — reduces the pressure placed on an already limited urban space, and helps improve the biodiversity and soil quality of the region.
In order to further contribute to the preservation and enhancement of biodiversity surrounding our developments, we compensate 1€/sqm for all acquired greenfield land. To do this we support accredited forestation and biodiversity projects around the continent, with a number of carefully selected partners who can provide local expertise in their field.
In Europe, we currently work with five partners across France, Spain, Italy, Belgium and the Netherlands: