Environmental and Social Responsibility
Unidas has several initiatives focused on mitigating its impacts and environmental sustainability:
- Water consumption: We are deepening our performance on the water theme, such as using rainwater harvesting, for reuse. As the most significant part of our consumption related to vehicle washing, in this sense we have dry cleaning implemented, when feasible, and in an expansion phase, in up to 30% of our stores. While on water washing we spend an average of 100L per car, on dry cleaning we spend around 1L of water. We replaced all conventional bathroom taps with automatic taps, which, according to studies, can save water up to 70% of consumption. At the same time, internal communications are made in the common areas of the Headquarters and the RAC and Used Car stores to raise awareness of water use. On average, the total water consumption in the Matrix was reduced by 15%.
- Electricity consumption: In 2020, we started the project for the acquisition of photovoltaic energy serving all units (12 units) in the State of Minas Gerais, with the purpose of expanding to other states in 2021. We adopted the installation of a timer, which controls the time of use of the air conditioners, we also use the self contained air conditioning model which, unlike traditional splits models, is more efficient in cooling medium and large commercial environments.
- Residues: Unidas has a reverse logistics project, designed by 3 young employees of the company. The project proposal focuses on the socio-environmental management of the Company’s supplier network. Considering that the automotive universe has an impact on the generation of pollutants due to the disposal of waste such as oil and tires, it is intended to outline intermediation strategies between workshops that generate potentially hazardous waste and companies that carry out the proper collection and disposal of these, in addition to raising awareness our suppliers through information and training on the importance and impact of ensuring the correct disposal, recycling or reuse of the waste generated, that is, promoting preventive and corrective actions in situations of incorrect waste management. The project was selected to participate in the Young Innovators in SDGs, an acceleration of ideas program aimed at young professionals who want to solve a business challenge and contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), United Nations Agenda 2030, which we are signatories. The program is led by the Global Compact in Brazil and in this edition it has the participation of 16 countries, with 27 projects registered in Brazil and 15 selected. We have also implemented control passwords for our printers at headquarters and stores.
We are currently gold seal in the GHG protocol – 2020 program, we are currently composing B3’s ICO2 (efficient carbon index) which aims to encourage IBrX 100 companies to measure, disclose and monitor their greenhouse gas emissions. Thus, companies are expected to prepare themselves to operate in a low carbon economy.
We are committed to the global Business Ambition for 1.5ºC – Our Only Future initiative, with the objective of limiting global temperature rise by 1.5 degrees Celsius and ambitious goals to cut greenhouse gas emissions in half by 2030 and zero emissions. GHGs until 2050. To comply with this commitment, in 2021, the Unidas Climate Strategy Program is being developed, in partnership with WayCarbon, Unidas is carrying out a study to mitigate and adapt its environmental impacts in order to establish goals for reducing emissions that will be submitted to the SBT (Science-Based Targets) initiative, which defined scientific standards for calculating GHG reductions aligned with a trajectory of 1.5°C and, thus, contribute to the achievement of the objectives stipulated by the Paris Agreement. In addition, we start a compensation program, our Climate Change Risk Matrix and the internal carbon offset price.
And we communicate that, following international environmental protection standards, we published our 2020 Unidas sustainability report.
Auto-rental stores (RAC) and used-vehicle stores (SMV)
- Investments of R$ 400k, in 2020, of LED reflectors with Procel seal in stores and administrative headquarters (approximately 7,300 units);
- Timers fitted to facades (totems and gateways);
- Wax rather than water used to wash cars – saving 95 liters of water per car on average;
- In more extreme cases, when rinsing is required, we are re-using water;
- Recycling, we are working to deepen the topic with reverse logistics projects through the company and its network of suppliers in order to provide the correct disposal of waste from our workshops, tires, oils, among others.
It’s worth mentioning that the Unidas fleet, due to its low average age and mileage, because its mostly flex-fuel engines and because we regularly maintain it, becomes a more efficient and less polluting fleet, resulting in less impact on the environment.
Through the “United for a Better World” program, every year Unidas promotes the following internal campaigns with its employees:
- Elo Program: Aligned with our employees and, motivated by the partnership, we join with civil society institutions. Through dialogue and survey of their needs, the program provides the revitalization of the spaces of these organizations, trains employees and promotes improvements in internal and management processes. It all started with assistance to three entities, in Belo Horizonte, which gave rise to one of the most important initiatives of United Corporate Social Responsibility. Between 2019, 2020 and 2021 we assisted 31 institutions located in nine states, and served more than 8,000 people.
- New Horizons: Aimed at young people aged 16 to 24 in conditions of social vulnerability in the communities close to our business units, in addition to people indicated by our employees. We seek inclusion through technical and professional education, through mentoring, classes, lectures and workshops with the aim of preparing these young people for entry into the labor market. We provide them with vacancies in courses offered by Senai, Senac and other reference institutions in the market (maintenance technician, qualification in automotive maintenance, administrative assistant; logistics, personnel management and techniques in negotiation and sales, among others) with the possibility of be part of Unidas’s young apprentice staff or be nominated for our supplier network. Our employees also participate in the program through mentoring, lectures and training supported by the company, contributing with technical knowledge for the training and professional qualification of these young people. During 2020, we helped to train 145 young people. In all, since the beginning of the program (2018), 395 young people have been served.
- Campaigns: Food basket distributed to support families in situations of vulnerability due to the pandemic, about 7,103 food basket in 2020 and 2021 (equivalent to 85,236 kg of food) Blankets and hygiene kits about 2,138 homeless people attended.
- The collection of school materials, food, toys and clothing for charity institutions and NGOs.
- The donation of blood in association with Hospital Santa Catarina.
- The distribution of Christmas cards for the Santa Claus in the Post Office campaign, through which socially vulnerable children write requests to Santa Claus and the Post Office sends them the presents (wherever possible), 508 children were assisted by the institutions served by the Elo Program. Values for Private Social Investment shares (excluding the Rouanet Law) – around R$ 3 million in 2020.
- We seek to act in social programs where, through collective actions, involving a wide network of partners, strengthening and empowering leaders, promoting education and entrepreneurship, guided by the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), United Nations Agenda 2030. Likewise, we have an active participation in social programs of the Global Compact Brazil Network, to which we are signatories, such as in the UNHCR and UN Women empowerment program for refugee women. The Empowering Refugees Program assists women refugees from their countries of origin due to socioeconomic or political situations that they seek through professional training courses and preparation for the job market to change their reality, with Unidas being a potential hiring company. In 2020, we played an active role in training 69 women during this program.
In 2020, with the support of our volunteers, we served more than 11,800 people. We also make annual financial donations to organizations recognized for their social work , such as the Ayrton Senna Institute (www.institutoayrtonsenna.org.br), Doutores da Alegria(www.doutoresdaalegria.org.br) and the World Wildlife Fund – WWF Brasil (http://www.wwf.org.br) and Associação Instituto ProA (www.proa.org.br/).
Below, we list the actions taken by the Company in recent years:
In 2018, we developed several actions to our Social Responsability program: We initiate the year receiving children from Casa Copacabana and Lar Batista institutions and delivered to them bycicles mounted by Company’s managers in a dynamic activity.
In April 2017, Unidas was awarded second place in the Environmental Sustainability category with the project _Lavagem a Seco dos Veículos da Frota_ (‘Implementing the Waterless Car Wash Method to the Fleet Vehicles’, in free translation) by the Brazilian Franchising Association.
In November, 2017, date in which we celebrate Kindness International Day, we visited the Child Care Center, União, in the city of Belo Horizonte and delivered toys collected by our employees at Company’s headquarters. Located at Conjunto Santa Maria, the unity works since 36 years ago and assists careless families children from 2 to 5 years old of the region and has more than 200 registered children.
In December, 2017, we held Locamerica’s Solidary Christmas, in which Company’s employees received christmas letters made by children of Child Care Center União, being realized toy deliverance.
On May, 2016, we did a social action in São João das Missões, state of Minas Gerais, in which Locamerica’s employees were volunteers. The comunity was chosen by its lack of resources and basic things to survive, which moved the organizors and enable donations to be delivered for careless families on that location.