Since its very beginnings, respect for the environment has been at the heart of ARTE’s values.
Sustainable development is therefore fully in line with our approach. At the Group’s various sites, the Channel puts into practice its daily commitment to reducing energy consumption, improving waste management, biodiversity, soft mobility and sustainable catering.

Building management: energy, water, waste

At the GEIE headquarters in Strasbourg, ARTE is the first (July 2016) television channel in France to be ISO 50 001 certified (energy efficiency). ARTE has undertaken to implement the measures needed to improve its average energy efficiency by 40 % by 2024 compared to its benchmark consumption in 2013. The channel is analysing and optimising its most energy-consuming activities. It is working to raise employee-awareness across the board and to include an energy criterion in its purchasing policy. Its energy performance has thus improved by an average of 29.04 % between 2014 and the end of 2022. Annual consumption fell from 8.2 GWh in 2013 to 4.1 GWh in 2022, with a 72.6 % reduction in gas consumption and a 38.4 % reduction in electricity consumption.

Attention is also paid to water management: the ARTE building has been hydro-efficient (WWF label) as far as taps for running water are concerned since 2013, and bottled water fountains have been replaced by filtered water fountains.

ARTE performs waste sorting and recycling (paper-cardboard-PET / glass / WEEE / organic waste/ batteries / light bulbs) and has forged partnerships with “Les bouchons de l’espoir 67”, a project that reclaims old corks and lids, and with “Libre objet” (a social and solidarity economy company), which turns its advertising banners into useful objects.

At ARTE France and ARTE Deutschland, similar approaches have been taken, leading to reduced water consumption, removal of plastic bottles and fewer DVDs printed and burned.

In Issy-Les-Moulineaux, the widespread introduction of Recy’go bins and the partnership with the social enterprise RecycLivre have helped to significantly improve waste recycling figures.

Biodiversity and green spaces

Working to promote the environment and biodiversity has always been a logical step for ARTE; as soon as construction started on the head office in Strasbourg (2003), green roofs – including a bee meadow – were installed.

In 2012, ARTE was naturally one of the first signatories of the “All Together for More Biodiversity” charter, an initiative launched by the Eurométropole de Strasbourg to promote green and blue belts. To this end, ARTE GEIE has introduced alternative techniques for maintaining its green spaces, planting hedgerows and groves of local species in its parking lot, mulching the beds and drastically reducing watering.

The Channel is also committed to reducing light pollution. The building is not lit during the night. Parking lot streetlamps have been replaced by eco-designed LEDs.


Since 2011, the ARTE GEIE company canteen has been committed to a robust sustainable catering policy. Some 50% of its fruit and vegetables come from organic and local production, as do the beef and the eggs, while 50% of the fish comes from sustainable French fishing and 70% of the products used are supplied by small local producers in Alsace. The preference is for fresh, seasonal produce. The canteen is also committed to recovering organic waste and to combating food waste.

In 2014-2015, it answered a call for a collective operation project promoted by the Eurométropole de Strasbourg. The diagnosis made by a specialist consulting firm when the support programme was launched helped identify the main sources of food waste and enabled joint measures to be implemented to reduce it. These measures have led to a considerable reduction in the quantities of food discarded: the amount discarded on average per meal and per guest has fallen from 150g to 80g. Given an average of 350 daily covers, this represented 28 kg of waste every day, which has a direct impact on the cost of treating bio-waste.

In addition, the company canteen has been committed to a “zero plastic” approach since November 2018. PET bottles have been systematically replaced with returnable bottles and vending machines no longer dispense disposable cups.

Mobility and transport

In accordance with Article 51 of the Law of 17 August 2015 on Energy Transition for Green Growth, ARTE is implementing a mobility plan. The Channel pursues an active incentive policy for soft mobility in order to reduce car journeys. It has been taking part in the “Go to work by bike” challenge organised by the Cadr67 association and the Eurométropole de Strasbourg since 2011 and has won many first prizes. Employees can take advantage of covered bike parking and an annual bike service, and a fleet of five bikes and five e-bikes is also available for them to use.

Thanks to a partnership with the City of Strasbourg and the Citiz network, since 2013 there has been a car-sharing station at the foot of the building, replacing the internal car fleet.

For staff using electric vehicles, four charging stations have been installed.
In its programmes, ARTE regularly puts environmental issues at the heart of the debate. Here are a few examples:

  • Faszination Arktis – Tauchgang unter dünnem Eis, a documentary that follows ice-water divers, offering breathtaking views of the endangered splendour of ice floes and their fauna (SWR – 2019)
  • Humans – Destroyers of Earth, a documentary which traces, from the industrial revolution to the present day, the rush towards development that led to the Era of Man and the continuous deterioration of the planet (ARTE France – 2019)
  • Sauvons nos forêts (Let’s Save our Forests), a documentary series about the men and women who are working to try to save our endangered European forests (WDR – 2019)
  • Vers un monde sans oiseaux ? (Towards a world without birds?), Close-up on some of the species we could still save, and how intensive single-crop farming and pesticides are driving down the population of farmland birds (Doclights/NDR – 2019)
  • Wie schaffen wir die Agrarwende?, with input from French and German farmers who are thinking about the potential for returning to an alternative type of agriculture that can replace the industrial model (SWR – 2018)
  • Manger autrement – l’expérimentation (Eating Differently – The Experiment), this documentary zooms in on our plates to show why we need to eat differently (ORF / ARTE G.E.I.E – 2018)
  • Europe Reclaims Biodiversity, a documentary on the reintroduction of large wild mammals in a bid to restore endangered ecosystems (ARTE France – 2018)
  • Lords of Water, an investigation into the financial giants who are battling to get their hands on the water market – the new “blue gold” (ARTE France – 2018)
  • Plastik überall – Geschichten vom Müll: a survey of environmental and health risks in the wake of global pollution caused by plastic (ZDF – 2017)
  • Nomades des mers, les escales de l’innovation, a documentary series that follows the engineer Corentin de Chatelperron on his catamaran for a trip around the world to discover the prospects for low-tech (ARTE France – 2016)
  • Wastecooking – Kochen, was andere verschwenden, a documentary series that follows the journalist David Gross in a trip across Europe to fight against food waste (SWR – 2015)
  • Les îles du futur, a documentary series and interactive game to discover five islands that are taking up the challenge of energy independence by exploiting the power of the elements (ARTE – 2015)
  • Le sable – Enquête sur une disparition, an ecological probe into the threat to sand, a vital resource that is being increasingly looted to make concrete (ARTE France – 2013)
  • Die Akte Alu, a documentary on aluminium and its toxicological risks (ZDF – 2013)
  • Le monde selon Monsanto, Notre poison quotidien and Les moissons du futur, Marie-Monique Robin’s successful trilogy on the agri-food industry (ARTE France – 2007/2010/2012)

There are also numerous special programmes: a special climate day (September 2019), a Thema evening devoted to economic growth and the consequences for the environment (September 2019), a major discussion of new forms of agriculture (March 2019) …

>> Online right now: ARTE’s environmental and nature programmes


2nd June 2022