‘A’A’ Presents LafargeHolcim Awards Prize Winners | Next Generation

Interview with Magali Anderson, Chief Sustainability and Innovation Officer, LafargeHolcim Member of the Board of the LafargeHolcim Foundation “TRYING TO FIND THE TESLA OF CEMENT” What is the relationship between the LafargeHolcim Awards and your job as Chief Sustainability and Innovation Officer at the company? The Foundation for Sustainable Construction was started in 2003 by Holcim. We produce cement and concrete and wanted to make the overall construction world more sustainable, before many people were talking about sustainable construction. The purpose of the Foundation is not to sell our products but to think about how we can lead a more sustainable world. The Foundation is 100 percent financed by LafargeHolcim, but it’s fully independent: the Chairperson is not an employee of the company. Yet there are similarities: what I work on at the company is actually how to find the next generation of cement that is as much decarbonized as possible. Can you talk about the growing sense that structural changes are needed to respond not only the global climate emergency but also other systemic failures like the pandemic? In LafargeHolcim, we started before the pandemic. The Board of Directors and Jan Jenisch, our CEO, decided to create the Chief Sustainability Officer position at the Executive Committee level before the pandemic. If you ask me, that’s certainly more due to the rising importance of sustainability in society and at company level, the pandemic itself was still months away from becoming a global issue. We know as a company that if we don’t transform ourselves we have no future. Six months ago, we joined Business Ambition for 1.5 Degrees, which is basically a net zero pledge. We have targets for 2030 that have been validated by SBTI (Science-Based Target Initiative). We have done strong work on how to decarbonize our own industry. But we are not doing that just by ourselves; we realize that it’s not going to happen if it’s only us. — Stephen Zacks 74-75