Environmental policy and management system

Elia developed an environmental governance programme, which defines Elia's environmental mission and responsibility and demonstrates its commitment to the sustainable development.

Community Relations

The Community Relations Division is the decision-making body for all environmental governance issues within the organisation.

We are currently reviewing the environmental policy and management system with a view to publish updates and explore possibilities to implement a certified environmental management system ISO 14001 and an environmental information system in 2022. 

Environmental policy

Through this environmental management system, Elia fortified its commitment to better protecting the environment and to create enhanced environmental awareness. An internal policy was formulated, which will be reviewed and updated by 2021.

We defined three key pillars in formalising our environmental commitment:

  • 1. Compliance & Risk Mitigation
    Respecting at minimum the legal requirements. It includes training of our employees so that they understand their responsibilities and the impact they can have on the environment through their work
  • 2. Sustainability
    A central aspect of Elia’s mission towards the energy transition. It includes our aim to continuously improve our environmental performance, our resource and energy efficiency, and lower emissions
  • 3. Acceptance
    Working together with citizens. It includes interacting with our various stakeholders on environmental issues (both internally and externally), in order to contribute to acquiring a ‘license to operate’.

Environmental management system

Our environmental management system also links and internal environmental management system to our commitments detailed above. Overall, four main themes are addressed within the framework:

  • 1. Prevent pollution and nuisance
  • 2. Limit climate change
  • 3. Use natural resources sustainably
  • 4. Protect nature and biodiversity

Roles and responsibilities

Environmental management at Elia is governed as follows:

  • Management Committee: approve the long-term goals that are set
  • Environment & CSR Department: sets out the strategy, goals and standards, and performs oversight and reporting
  • Environment & CSR Department: sets out the strategy, goals and standards, and performs oversight and reporting
  • Business, operational experts: set specific standards, implementation plans and their follow-up.
  • Employees: perform the day-to-day execution and controls.

Environmental training

The Environment & CSR Department, in cooperation with the Education Center, ensures that all Elia representatives that perform tasks with potential environmental consequences have the appropriate education, training and experience. New employees receive trainings, incl. e-trainings.

The Environment & CSR Department is tasked with ensuring that learning packages are kept up-to-date whenever a new environmental item with operational consequences pops up.  

Elia representatives are trained on:

  • The most important environmental aspects and potential consequences of their daily work
  • The adaptations that are done to meet legal requirements
  • The importance of living up to environmental management system and its procedures, and the potential ramifications in case one deviates from them
  • Their tasks and responsibilities for meeting the environmental management requirements

E-learning materials are existing on specific topics:

  • Elelctro-magnetic Fields
  • Water management
  • Compensation policy in the case of constructing above-ground infrastructure on private land.

Execution of environmental management

The environmental management, consists of the following elements:

  • Follow-up of environmental laws.
  • Proactive approach to environmental issues of a dedicated team, where topic area experts are tracking trends and implementing improvement actions.
  • Actions in the areas of emissions, soil, noise, water, biodiversity and landscape integration, waste, EMF, mobility and reporting.
  • Environmental audits are planned to take place within the framework of our Green procurement programme, which is prioritizing contractors with a risk-based approach, and after a self-assessment will monitor suppliers, among other sustainability aspects, on their environmental performance.
  • External environmental reporting according to the GRI indicators and in CDP. In addition, with ‘Acceptance’ being one of the three main pillars of Elia’s environmental commitments, Elia also discusses environmental impacts and mitigation efforts in the local stakeholder fora, while relevant environmental incidents, issues are published on its internet page in the News section or via newsletters. Internally, the main source of communication is the intranet site.
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