Our contribution to securing and creating a healthy environment for future generations is diverse in character: on the one hand, we seek to set an example at our own sites, but we also take environmental and climate concerns into account in the way we shape our products and set their prices.
Designing insurance products with foresight
Upon request, we can, for instance, invest deposited premiums for unit-linked life insurance in sustainability funds. But sustainability can also be found in other products as well. Our motor vehicle insurance, Safeline, for instance, rewards environmentally-responsible driving habits. Built-in GPS devices and the Safeline app not only ensure rapid assistance in the event of an accident, they also record distances travelled. Those who drive less can save up to 25 per cent on liability and comprehensive motor insurance. And insurance coverage for electric powered vehicles is cheaper than for gasoline or diesel-powered vehicles. UNIQA Austria offers a 25 per cent discount on motor vehicle liability coverage and currently insures 15 per cent of all electric cars in Austria. Household and homeowner insurance also includes an environmental component, which insures solar/photovoltaic systems, heat pumps and pellet heating systems, etc. against hazards such as indirect lightning strikes or defective materials and workmanship. In addition, upon providing proof of the purchase of a solar water heater, heat pump, photovoltaic system or controlled ventilation system, homeowner coverage during the first three months is free of charge.
Leading by example
Internal competitions such as the Raiffeisen Sustainability Challenge help foster ideas for a healthy environment. The Climate Protection Manual offers employees information and practical tips on how they can reduce their impact on the climate through their everyday routines at home and at work. The Electricity Reduction Competition encourages employees to measure their personal electricity consumption over the course of a year. The winner is the person who saves the most power during the year. UNIQA is also promoting the use of vehicles with low CO2 emissions or electric company cars in Austria. If employees decide to do without a car entirely, we subsidise the purchase of public transport passes.
The UNIQA Tower in Vienna meets the latest requirements for energy efficiency and climate protection. As of 2008, the Tower was the first office building in Austria and one of the first in Europe to hold the European Union’s GreenBuilding Certificate. It has also been awarded the Developer’s Prize, the Facility Prize and the US Green Building Council Lead. In Austria, the UNIQA Group gets 100 per cent of its electricity from suppliers with the “Green Energy” designation. The use of heat pumps decreases CO2 emissions by 84 t/year, while 33 per cent of the power for heating and cooling is obtained from geothermal sources. A cooling ceiling installed in all floors at the UNIQA Tower provides for static and convective cooling.
UNIQA is also a founding member of the Raiffeisen Climate Protection Initiative, which has been promoting sustainable economic and social models since 2007.
By developing the Green Mobility programme, UNIQA has introduced twelve group-wide climate-friendly mobility criteria. Measures involved in the programme include driver training for energy-efficient driving, charging stations for electric cars, the widest possible deployment of video conferencing in place of business travel and the appointment of an internal “Climate Manager”.