LIMITING GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS
Action to decrease the Group’s ecological footprint
Cutting greenhouse gas emissions generated by the Group’s activities
The Group gives careful consideration to environmental factors at every stage of its activities. Environmental considerations are a key issue for infrastructures, as illustrated by the construction of the Chaponne motorway area, featuring the first ecodesigned building on a motorway to receive HQE® environmental quality certification. The Arlay and Seynod-Sud toll stations on the A39 and A41 motorways, respectively, are equipped with photovoltaic canopy roofs that generate enough electricity to cover 30% of their power requirements. All in all, the APRR & AREA motorway network features nearly 1,350 items of static equipment powered by photovoltaic cells: the network’s emergency roadside telephones, meteorological stations, road signs, traffic monitoring cameras and even variable-message signs are gradually transitioning to renewable energy. AREA is also trialling the use of solar water heating systems for washbasins at rest areas.
APRR is also adjusting its work methods to reduce energy consumption, in particular by rolling out the use of video conferencing to minimise employee travel and hence fuel consumption.
Innovating for leaner energy performance
Reducing greenhouse gas emissions is also an issue when modernising infrastructures. As a result of APRR’s unwavering commitment, the Chamoise tunnel on the A40 motorway was the first tunnel to be equipped with LED lighting. Replacing the existing sodium lights with light-emitting diode units yielded a 45% reduction in electricity consumption, while also improving lighting coverage for motorists, making the tunnel safer and more comfortable.
Each winter, APRR and AREA provisions 11,000 tonnes of salt for its “winter driving” programme that aims to ensure that customers are able to travel even in severe weather.
Staff at AREA came up with the idea of replacing some of this salt (sourced from Mediterranean salt marshes) with a salt by product of a production process at a local metalworking plant. This innovative process is a good illustration of the circular economy, reducing the greenhouse gas emissions previously generated by transporting sea salt while reusing a previously unrecovered industrial by-product.
Providing new services to decrease the carbon footprint
The ongoing rollout of non-stop toll payments enhances the driving experience, while also limiting fossil energy consumption. A simple, practical solution that saves motorists time by allowing vehicles to drive through the toll barrier at up to 30km/h, the system also saves fuel and helps to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.
The network-wide rollout of fast charging stations is also helping to limit greenhouse gas emissions by supporting the development of electric vehicles. These charging stations are powered with electricity generated from renewable sources.
To improve comfort and safety, APRR has introduced a dynamic speed limit system, which uses variable-message signs to adjust the traffic speed according to the network’s traffic density. This system, which is intended to keep traffic flowing smoothly and to limit pollution by decreasing congestion, is currently in operation on certain sections of the A40 and A6 motorways.
Supporting the development of car pooling
To encourage this means of travel, APRR also has a special electronic toll payment offer for car poolers. The monthly subscription fee for the low-cost electronic toll package for car poolers is waived for the first six months, and in subsequent months as long as at least four trips per month are made.