Since the launch of its carbon neutral programme in 2007, the Group has been constantly improving its environmental approach. In 2011, Societe Generale was one of the first banks to implement the internal carbon tax, charged to the Group’s business lines and support functions, in order to fund the purchase of ‘carbon credits’. Today, this mechanism serves as a reference for other major international groups.

In 2012, it was decided that the sums collected would be wholly dedicated to initiatives aimed at improving the energy efficiency of Societe Generale’s entities and business lines, thereby adopting an innovative and motivating system. In 2017, Societe Generale decided to accelerate its 2014-2020 carbon reduction programme, and therefore strengthened its objective to reduce its carbon footprint by cutting its CO2 emissions per employee by 25% by 2020. 

The Internal Carbon Tax and The Environmental Efficiency Awards

This desire to reduce emissions is accompanied by innovative initiatives such as the Internal Carbon Tax applied to all entities based on their carbon footprint, which finances internal programme for environmental efficiency. At the seventh award ceremony for the “Environmental Efficiency Awards”, Societe Generale celebrated the gathering momentum behind its Internal Carbon Tax system, which is used as a benchmark reference for other large groups.

Established in 2007, this programme has expanded over the years and is based on an innovative dual-incentive scheme. Each year, a carbon tax is collected from Group entities based on their emissions and then is redistributed to reward the best internal environmental efficiency initiatives.

Over the last seven years, this programme has achieved remarkable success: generating €160 million in savings, avoiding over  81,000 tons of CO? and saving 382 GWh of energy. The growing participation of our staff, the emergence of new initiatives and the environmental benefits are all evidence that responsible actions are an opportunity to create value, innovate and generate savings.

Read the press release on the seventh edition of the "Environmental Efficiency Awards"

Diony Lebot Deputy Chief Executive Officer

Societe Generale has been committed to contributing positively to the issue of global warming for many years, whether with our clients or through our own direct environmental impact. We have been pioneers in introducing our Internal Carbon Tax, which has since been adopted by many of our peers.

Some winning projects

Waste management and selective sorting


3,750 kg/year of organic wastes transformed into compost

180 kg/year of CO? avoided


Annual savings: €6,624

Introduction of selective sorting in the restaurant and a garden with composter at the Group's branch in Aubagne in southern France.

Environmental goal
  • Reduce waste, transform bio-waste, re-vegetate and reduce greenhouse gases
Other positive impact
  • Increased quality of life at work
  • Improvement of the working environment


Two new solar power plants in the Ivory Coast


117,450 kWh/year produced
76,342 kg/year of CO? avoided


Annual savings: €6,917

Two solar power plants installed to run the 
Dimbokro and Katiola sites

Environmental goal
  • Production of electricity from renewable sources
  • 50% reduction in traditional energy consumption
Other positive impact
  • 50% savings on the electricity bill
  • Stabilisation of the power supply compared to the instability of the local network
  • Contribution to the Group's CO? reduction commitments

Carbon Mail


181 kWh/staff member/year

10 kg/staff member/year of CO? avoided


Installation of an additional module on staff emailboxes to assess the environmental impact of use for each staff member

Environmental goal
  • Limit energy consumption related to sending and storing emails by raising staff awareness
Other positive impact
  • Decrease in emailbox volumes


Dematerialisation of sending credit card codes


7 tons/year of paper saved
6,400 kg/year of CO? avoided


Annual savings: €406,737

Since October 2018, credit card password codes are no longer sent by post to the customer, they are accessible on the customer’s account area of the Bank's website, for a temporary and secure period.

Environmental goal
  • Reduction of the Group's paper consumption and CO? emissions related to the sending of post
Other positive impacts
  • Increased operational efficiency
  • Increased customer satisfaction through sending the password code faster

Solar mobile bank


4 200 kWh/year


Annual savings: €624

First mobile bank in Morocco equipped with solar panels to supply electricity

Environmental goal

  • Reduction of fuel consumption, CO? emissions and pollutants (NOx, fine particles...)
Other positive impact
  • Provide banking services to people living in remote rural regions