Interventions on environmental externalities:


Implementation of measures for lighting flows regulation according to the infrastructure needs and the complementary use of LED technology (Ascendi is a pioneer in Portugal on installing LED technology in motorway Interchanges);


  • Monitoring of infrastructures under construction or built
  • Conduct environmental impact studies (EIS) in all built infrastructures

In order to ensure the alignment of the subcontractors’ activities with Ascendi’s environmental standards, the specifications include environmental issues and the document ‘Best practices on site’ was drawn up.

Environmental management on Site Award - The aim of this campaign is to reward best practices through an award scheme for environmental management performance by assessing:

  •  Response times to Ascendi’s requests;
  • Waste recovery;
  • Skills of the professionals involved;
  • Use of best environmental practices;
  • Implementation of self-control systems;
  •  Precision and team performance.

Resource consumption and waste management

Waste is managed in compliance with the national legislation in force and based on the assumption that all waste is sent for recovery, thus reducing the negative impact it may have on the environment. In 2020, Ascendi produced 935 tonnes of waste, of which 99% was non-hazardous and 73% was recovered.

Waste management by subcontractors is important to Ascendi, which is why it invests in awareness-raising and training as a means of ensuring that the procedures adopted are in line with its standards. Subcontractors generated a total of 9,103 tonnes of waste in 2020, of which almost 100% was non-hazardous and 99% was recovered.

Waste Recovery

Ascendi’s objective is to increase the reuse of waste that can be recovered within its infrastructures, by incorporating milled waste in the new bituminous mixes to be applied in future repaving, thus promoting the circularity of the materials.

Waste producedt8089352.213
Hazardous wastet26710
Non-hazardous wastet7819282.203
Recovered waste15886791.789

Water Resources

Considering the importance of reducing water consumption as an effective way of managingresource consumption, Ascendi ensures compliance with the legislation in force in all its operations and promotes various initiatives. Water consumption in 2020 was 8,811 m3, down 6% from the previous year (9,435 m3). This incentive for the responsible, sustainable use of water resources will continue in 2021.

Other initiatives:

  • Monitoring of sensitive areas;
  • Installation of tailing ponds, with macrophyte beds, constituting a "naturalised" system that is very efficient in capturing pollutants transported in dissolved state or in fine particles, which is a pioneering system in Portugal.
Ambiente - Recursos Hídricos

Noise Pollution;

Noise is a relevant issue in infrastructure management, and Ascendi monitors the
locations proposed in the general five-year monitoring plans and locations considered to be
sensitive receptors or which are the subject of complaints. Based on the monitoring results,
whenever technically feasible and with the owners’ agreement, acoustic barriers are implemented to
minimise or eliminate noise In 2020 acoustic barriers were built in more urban areas in order to
comply with the action plan approved by the Portuguese Environment Agency, which increases noise in
the surrounding environment and, consequently, complaints.In the future Ascendi aims to continue its
acoustic barrier projects, minimising noise pollution from its roads for the surrounding

Acoustic Barriers - 103 KM in 2020

Other initiatives:

  • Noise monitoring in sensitive areas;
  • Use of permeable sound-absorbing paving wherever feasible;
  • Installation of Noise Barriers.
Ambiente - Gestão do Ruído

Biodiversity Conservation

Aware of the impact that its infrastructure generates,
Ascendi has a set of initiatives that consolidate its commitment to preserving biodiversity and
protecting speciesIn partnership with Infraestruturas de Portugal, Ascendi is participating in the Life
Lines project, with the objective of reducing animal mortality by identifying species and outlining
measures to prevent animal-related road accidents. A mobile application was developed to identify
species that live near motorways and to record the location of the road where the species appeared in
the Geographic Information System (GIS).

Other initiatives:

  • Monitoring of fauna and flora in sensitive areas, especially of endangered species
  • Promotion of the conservation of protected species (transfer of stork nests and species conservation campaigns);
  • Implementation of "naturalized" wildlife corridors to decrease the barrier effect of the infrastructures;
  • World Animal Day - Ascendi celebrated World Animal Day with a video, sent to all employees, on the animals found in the areas adjacent to the motorways and the work carried out to protect species
  • International Day for Biological Biodiversity -Ascendi celebrated the International Day for Biological Diversity with the release of a video, sent to all employees, addressing the impact of the company’s activity and the initiatives promoted for fostering biodiversity in partnership with the University of Aveiro. This partnership aims to reduce animal mortality and promote biodiversity across the concession network.
  • Replanting of protected tree species(e.g. cork oaks and holm oaks) as a compensatory measure.
Ambiente - Conservação da Biodiversidade


Strategic Energy Plan

Ascendi’s Strategic Energy Plan (PEE) was developed and approved, guided by the guidelines of the National Roadmap for Carbon Neutrality 2050 (RNC 2050), whose main objective was the establishment of Ascendi’s policies on energy and climate, so that the organization and each person are committed to improving energy performance, both direct and indirect. Ascendi’s energy consumption is spread over 3 main sectors (roads/highways, buildings and car fleet/plant maintenance equipment) and is aggregated, for measurement purposes, as established in the GHG Protocol (by emissions of scope 1, 2 and 3).


Emission management

CO2 emissions in 2021 were of 830.147 tCO2.
Of the total emissions, 0.3% were of scope 1 and 99.7% of scope 3, referring to the trafficof vehicles circulating on Ascendi's roads

Emission managementUn.´19´20´21
CO2 emissionstCO2e947.581605.709830.147
Avoided CO2 emissionstCO2e251.0881.016
Renewable energy productionkWh83.11996.659140.082


Energy consumption 

Ascendi’s energy consumption in 2021 was 69,859 GJ (0.4% more than in the previous year), 100% of which was produced using renewable sources (an increase of 20 percentage points compared to 2020).

Percentage of electricity from renewable sources

Energy consumptionUn.´18´19´20´’21
Electricity purchased from the grid (kWh)kWh10.895.00310.604.64010.020.9359.002.177
Consumption of electricity from renewable self-productionkWh30,47683.11996.659134.640
Energy consumptionGJ67,94670,02169.58569.859
Energy intensity (grid dimensions)GJ/Km108112111111

The eco-efficiency measures implemented represented an investment of €978,190, consisting in the conclusion of the Strategic Energy Plan, and mainly, in the installation of 8 photovoltaic production units for self-consumption (UPACs), amounting to total power of 250 kWp and an estimated annual production of 360 MWh. Coverages were also built for carport vehicles, using photovoltaic panels.


Life on Earth depends on the right ecological balance, which results from the existing relationships between all living organisms. The disappearance or introduction of any given species may bring about significant changes, which often have serious effects. According to recent studies, the COVID-19 pandemic is directly linked with the loss of Biodiversity and ecosystem services. Continuous deforestation may also lead to an increase in this type of zoonoses (diseases transmitted from animals to humans).

Biodiversity at Ascendi

At Ascendi, we intend to turn our infrastructures into opportunities, by adopting measures that help preserve the balance of Nature.
In this sense, we have launched the “Biodiversity on the Road” programme, which aims to promote the defence and preservation of Nature’s richness and variety through the sharing of relevant information.
Presented by biologist Pedro Moreira, this programme comprises 5 episodes, which will be made available every Monday, between the 16th May and the 13th June.
The programme will also be available on several platforms, namely YouTube and the Ascendi website and social networks, as well as in podcast format on Spotify.
Focusing on the importance of Biodiversity, this programme will present useful tips and suggestions for protecting Biodiversity, and show us how these small gestures can be decisive to its defence and preservation.
This initiative is part of Ascendi’s commitment to fostering the sustainable use of resources, ecological transition and the protection of Biodiversity across its network.

Biodiversity matters to all of us

Therefore, we would like to invite you to join us! Every week, we’ll suggest a series of simple, daily actions that may help preserve Biodiversity.

Episode 1 - Biodiversity– the balance of life on Earth
Aware of the impact of infrastructures, Ascendi organises several initiatives that strengthen its commitment to preserving Biodiversity and ensuring the protection of all species.
But what is exactly understood by Biodiversity? This concept refers to the variety of Life on Earth, from genes to the countless species of animals, plants and microorganisms found on our planet, as well as all habitats and ecosystems that form the biosphere.
In this first episode, Ascendi’s biologist Pedro Moreira will talk about the existing challenges and give us examples of small actions that can make all the difference when it comes to environmental conservation.
Episode 2 - Invasive Species– A serirous threat
What exactly are invasive species? A species is deemed invasive when it proliferates excessively under ideal conditions, in the absence of natural control, causing harm to the local environment and Biodiversity.
Why should we be concerned? In this second episode, João Lindo da Cunha, a specialist in invasive species at Ascendi, will explain why invasive species represent a serious threat to our fauna and flora.
Episode 3 – Gaia Biological Park Animal Rescue Centre
Have you ever found a hurt animal? Would you know what to do if you found an animal in need of help? In this episode, we will visit the Gaia Biological Park Animal Rescue Centre, where we’ll talk about some of the techniques used to capture animals in these situations and explain how these centres contribute to Biodiversity preservation. In addition to playing a key role in raising the population’s awareness of the region’s flora, fauna, climate and landscape, the Gaia Biological Park focuses significantly on educational initiatives aimed at children.
Episode 4 - Passerines - Small wings for a great future
What exactly are passerines? Passerines belong to a very diversified group of birds that includes more than half of the world’s bird species. As the number of people living in cities increases, birds have come to play a key role in connecting us to Nature. In this episode we will show you how you can contribute to the defence and preservation of passerine species.
Episode 5 – Pollination – Transporting life from flower to flower
Can you imagine a world without refreshing, diced watermelon in the summer or a little piece of chocolate with your coffee? Without pollinators, this could become an ugly reality. But what exactly are pollinators and what do they do? Pollinators are small animals, such as birds and butterflies, that fly from flower to flower, carrying pollen on their legs and bodies. But why are pollinators disappearing? Find out all about pollination in this episode.

Social Responsibility

Ascendi’s activity is guided by a socially responsible model, interactive with the surroundings, namely seeking to improve the well-being of communities close to its areas of influence and of its employees, the development of scientific and technical knowledge in its area of activity and the promotion of universally recognized values in developed societies.

Among the current assumed initiatives we highlight:

  • Social Support
    - Direct and regular support to local charities and promote volunteer and fund-raising projects together with the Ascendi employees.
    - Establishment of protocols with third-parties which benefit employees, and campaigns to promote healthy lifestyles and disease prevention, blood donation campaigns, etc.
  • Promotion of Technical and Scientific Knowledge
    Partnerships with Universities and other Higher Education Institutions for the development of I&D projects that are relevant in Ascendi’s area of activity, for the development of curricular and vocational internship programs and scholarships
  • Promotion of Cultural Development
    - Financial support to the Museum of Contemporary Art in Porto (Fundação de Serralves) and funding of archaeological activities, as part of our construction activity
  • Promotion of Social Integration
    Participation in the activities of the Committee on Equal Opportunities, the Forum for Gender Equality and promotion of labour integration of disabled workers;
  • Sustainability Promotion - TreeTop Walk
    - Ascendi twentieth birthday anniversary was celebrated with the exclusive patronage of the Treetop Walk, an elevated walkway from the top of the trees in the gardens of Serralves Foundation, designed by the architect Carlos Castanheira in collaboration with the architect Álvaro Siza Vieira. This patronage is an example of Ascendi´s true concern for the promotion of an ethical and responsible relationship with the environment, culture, biodiversity and sustainable social practices..
Logo Católica
Logo SerraAlves
Logo IGen
Logo Nova SBE

Human Resources

Ascendi believes people are its biggest asset.
That is why its human resources policy is focused on the personal and professional development of our staff through a continued investment in coherent vocational training programs, in promoting safety at work and in the development of social activities

Each employees’ commitment is crucial for the whole organization.

Ascendi strives to clarify and align expectations so that everyone may feel involved and with a sense of belonging.

Among the developed activities we highlight:

  • Annual Training Plans, oriented to the individual and/or collective development of professional and personal skills;
  • Proactive promotion of Safety in the Workplace;
  • Promotion of a healthy lifestyle and isease prevention;
  • Sporting and cultural team activities, as a means of fostering internal cohesion.