Wildfires in South of France: CMA CGM Group takes action to restore natural areas in the Plaine des Maures

August 26, 2021

• CMA CGM is backing large-scale initiatives to help the private, municipal and state-owned forests ravaged by the fire that destroyed over 7,000 hectares.

• CMA CGM is contributing to the RESPIR fund to protect the soil and restore the devastated areas.

• The CMA CGM Group is committed to protecting the environment and biodiversity.

The CMA CGM Group, a world leader in shipping and logistics, is taking action to meet the environmental emergency caused by the recent forest fires in the Var department. It has announced a €1 million donation to restore natural areas in the devastated zones of the Plaine des Maures, a nature reserve in the Var department.

The CMA CGM Group's donation will go to the RESPIR regional fund. Founded in April 2021 by the Provence-Alpes-Cote d'Azur regional government, the RESPIR fund brings together forest owners, and public-and private-sector financial partners to help preserve forest areas in the region.

This donation will be used to finance an integrated 3-stage environment -and-biodiversity restoration plan that will be outlined over the next few days by all local partners:

• Post-fire evaluation study: this study, which will aim to gain an accurate picture of the damage caused by the fire to the biodiversity of fauna and flora, will also serve as a basis for laying down a strategy for rehabilitating and preventing fires, as well as measures that will be implemented in priority.

• Work programs to protect the soil and set up special installations for fauna: rapid implementation of work programs is essential to secure tracks and roads, prevent soil leaching and erosion by rain, especially using the fascine mattressing method, which consists in stabilizing land using brushwood. Refuges will also be built for several species, including the extinction-threatened Hermann's turtle, where their habitat has been destroyed.

• Replanting: over the next 2 to 3 years, planting campaigns, especially at fulcrum points, a technique used to reforest damaged areas in order to foster the natural spread of seeds to the surroundings, will be launched using species present prior to the fire. "Future-proofing areas" will also be set up, with the replanting of species well-suited to the challenges posed by climate change.

Institutional and local partners at the heart of restoration decisions
With its donation, the CMA CGM Group is responding to the environmental emergency in close collaboration with institutional and local partners. The French National Forestry Office (ONF), the Provence-Alpes-Cote d'Azur regional governement, the Var departmental council, the affected municipal and intermunicipal governments, and bodies representing owners whose land was concerned will also be included directly in the governance framework for restoration initiatives to be carried out by the RESPIR fund.

Image by CMA CGM

The CMA CGM Group will offset 100% of the World Conservation Congress' carbon footprint
Alongside its initiatives to support the Var department, the CMA CGM Group is reiterating its commitment to protecting the environment and biodiversity by partnering with the French Ministry for the Ecological Transition for the organization of the International Union for Conservation of Nature's (IUCN) World Conservation Congress. The event will take place in Marseille from September 3rd to 11th 2021. The Congress brings together experts, governments and government agencies, as well as civil society organizations from over 160 countries and aims to define priorities and guide biodiversity conservation programs around the world.

As part of this partnership, the Group will offset 100% of the carbon emissions attributable to the event. Once the event's full carbon footprint has been established, it will implement several open offset initiatives.

EcoAct, one of the international leaders in the fight against climate change and an accredited carbon offset specialist, will establish the carbon footprint using a certified methodology. The footprint will take into account all direct and indirect impacts of the Congress, including emissions related to participants' travel arrangements, the shipping of equipment, water and energy consumption, accommodation and waste management.

Meet CMA CGM at the World Conservation Congress
As a partner of the French Ministry of Environmental Transition for the organization of the World Conservation Congress, the CMA CGM Group will be present at the following events on the program:

September 3: Rodolphe Saade, Chairman and CEO of the CMA CGM Group, will speak at the CEO Summit

September 7 to 11: the CMA CGM Group will have a stand showcasing its various nature conservation and biodiversity protection initiatives - Generation Nature area, Hall 2

CMA CGM press release