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Vignobles Lacombe calls upon ClimatePartner to help make their Bordeaux wine production “climate neutral”
A First in Europe

Paris, France, October 9, 2007 - - Vignobles Lacombe is the first wine producer in Europe to market “climate neutral” or “carbon neutral” wines… in other words, wines representing a concrete* contribution to the worldwide effort to cool down global warming.

Mr Rémi Lacombe, owner of Vignobles Lacombe, has decided to appoint ClimatePartner for the management of the entire process of calculating the vineyard’s greenhouse-gas emissions, as well offsetting these emissions, in a process also known as “carbon offset.” The total volume of greenhouse gases generated by Vignobles Lacombe production activities amounts 639 tons or 1.7 Kg of CO2 per bottle of 75 cl, An official certificate will prove the offset of this volume. A specific set of emissions sources to be evaluated was chosen (engines, lighting, etc.) that can be referred to as the winery’s carbon footprint. As a matter of fact, it is necessary for this type of operation to define a scope that would be both reasonable, significant and still within the control of the company.

In addition to data collection and subsequent carbon offsets, ClimatePartner provides its client with strategic recommendation, including marketing-communications assistance. “Doing something for the planet is good; let people know about it is useful,” stressed Moritz Lehmkuhl, director of ClimatePartner Europe. Therefore, each “climate-neutral” bottle* will bear a numbered certificate collar indicating its distinctive asset. An important item, this collar will explain to the consumer what it means and tell them how, by drinking this Bordeaux, they become a player* in climate protection.

“In wine production, the chances for releasing CO2 are many: there are the gases produced in wine-making, bottling operations and transport,” says Rémi Lacombe. “We have already taken steps to reduce our environmental footprint and we are going to do more, but we are not going to grow grapes with horses, which would be respectable but is not part of our business model. Our completely modern company cannot take a step backward. When we reached, or came close to the limit of our abilities in reducing CO2 emissions, we got the idea of offsetting the CO2 emissions we couldn’t further reduce. We are going to minimize our consumption, and maximize our offsets. Along the same line, I have noticed that the consumer now wants to become a consumer-player*, I see a change in consumer behaviour, and I want to offer customers a pathway for that. We are seeing a new consumer approach, with people willing to join the good with the useful*. All of this thinking made me decide to offset the carbon production of Vignobles Lacombe operations. Offering carbon-neutral bottles, this means that when possible, or where it’s more easily possible, elsewhere on the planet, through our financial contribution we are creating opportunities for saving CO2 equal to the CO2 that is emitted here.

“When you produce around 365,000 bottles a year like we do, it gives you 1,000 chances a day to send a message to consumers, and gives consumers a chance to do something for the planet with us. It’s a pleasure, and an act*
Rémi Lacombe.
ClimatePartner wants to remind companies of the new opportunities offered by carbon offset. “The multitude of initiatives attracting public attention to the urgent need for a massive reduction in emissions confirm that our approach is more relevant than ever,” declared Moritz Lehmkuhl, director of ClimatePartner Europe. “At a more personal level, every one of us, citizens and professionals alike, has to reflect on our emissions and how to offset them intelligently. And we can demonstrate that offsetting CO2 emissions voluntarily is an act within the reach of every company, and doesn’t require cumbersome procedures or big budgets. It’s a win-win situation: offsetting CO2 (from an event, a trip, printed material, etc.) is on the one hand a real and concrete act slowing climate change, and on the other it is a new and still very original way for companies to distinguish themselves from their competitors, and become unique to their partners and collaborators.”

ClimatePartner offers a whole range of solutions for companies based on volunteerism and commitment. In exchange for their commitment and their participation in certified and recognized carbon offset programs, ClimatePartner supports and advises companies concerned about integrating the environmental question into their services, products, or events in a sustainable manner.

The First Carbon-Neutral Conference at the Press Club de France in February 2007
Thanks to a ClimatePartner initiative, the first “carbon-free" or “climate neutral” press conference was held on February 20, 2007 at the Press Club de France, on behalf of VIA Technologies, a Taiwanese company heavily involved in low-power microprocessors, the central subject developed during the conference. Despite hosting over 400 press conferences a year – including those with high-level politicians including some major environmentalists – never before had an organizer asked the Press Club de France to offset a conference’s carbon footprint!

Climate Neutrality – in Short
Major production industries are subject (Kyoto Protocol) to emissions quotas. But every economic activity generates emissions (transport, electricity, heating, etc.) that companies not subject to these quotas can freely chose to offset. The concept does not mean going back to horse-drawn carriages and candles, but to continue emitting (moderately) “here,” while compensating “elsewhere” on the planet. For example, an organization will build solar-powered ovens in Africa to replace wood-fired ovens Thus, deforestation is slowed (and photosynthesis maintained) and atmospheric CO2 emissions are eliminated.

About Vignobles Lacombe
Located in Civrac-en-Médoc in the Bordeaux area, SCF Lacombe produces red wines from four chateaux with the Médoc AOC: Château Bessan Ségur Cru Bourgeois, Château Tour Saint-Vincent, Château La Gravette Lacombe, and Château La Grange de Bessan. In October 2006, Vignobles Lacombe was awarded the food safety trophy that crowned a “vine to glass” traceability system at the service of logistics and consumers (GS1 France Gold Trophy), becoming France's first winery to use barcodes to trace every step in the winemaking process. http://www.vignobles-lacombe.com

About ClimatePartner
ClimatePartner, whose parent company is located in Germany, is a consulting firm specialized in climate protection by offering expert services and an information department. ClimatePartner GmbH & co KG is represented in more than 10 countries, now including France starting in 2007. ClimatePartner uses innovative mechanisms derived from the Kyoto protocol for convincing companies, organizations, and towns to take a long-term position on climate protection. http://www.climatepartner.com/

Press Contact:
Actual Public Relations
Hervé Delemarre – Direct line: +33 (0)1 41 10 41 11 -herve@actual.fr
www.actual.fr


ClimatePartner comprehensive press kit available on Actual Public Relations website, includes a choice of photographs – in home page, click in the Salle de Presse (Press Room) section on client name ClimatePartner to access press kit.

VIDEO CLIP – a 7 minute video clip hard copy including interview of Mr Rémi Lacombe is available on request, can also be viewed on DailyMotion www.dailymotion.com -- in « search » (Recherche), just key in « climatepartner » or use the following link:
http://www.dailymotion.com/relevance/search/climatepartner/video/x37a0q_un-vin-climatiquement-neutre-une-pr_business
Also on display in Vignobles Lacombe web site – www.vignobles-lacombe.com





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