Remscheid, 5 October 2020
Climate-neutral this year thanks to afforestation projects
Company’s own CO2 emissions to be halved by 2030
The Vaillant Group is thus supporting the aims of the United Nations and the EU on climate protection and sustainable development
The Vaillant Group is becoming climate-neutral. In order to achieve this goal, the Remscheid-based heating technology specialist has developed an ambitious, long-term climate strategy. The Vaillant Group will reduce its own CO2 emissions by 50 per cent by 2030. This will be accomplished through the use of electrical energy from renewable sources, significantly reduced energy consumption within production processes and buildings, and investment in an environmentally friendly vehicle fleet. Starting this year, the company already completely offsets its remaining emissions by means of existing certified afforestation projects. In addition, the Vaillant Group is planning to set up its own afforestation projects in emerging countries in the long term. By 2030, the newly created forest areas will capture from the atmosphere the emissions of the climate-damaging greenhouse gas CO2 that the company is unable to avoid and will store them over the long term. The climate strategy, which focuses on CO2 reduction and offsetting, forms part of the SEEDS sustainability programme, which the Vaillant Group established ten years ago and is now relaunching this year.
“With the new climate strategy, the Vaillant Group will achieve the complete offset of CO2 emissions that it generates during manufacturing processes and business operations as of this year. Halving CO2 emissions by 2030, switching to energy from renewable sources and developing and getting involved in afforestation projects are the three elements through which we will achieve carbon neutrality quickly and sustainably. In order to bring about complete decarbonisation by 2050, it is imperative that the gas and electricity grids are fully converted to renewable energy sources on a gradual basis after 2030,” explains Dr.-Ing. Norbert Schiedeck, CEO of the Vaillant Group.
Halving CO2 emissions by 2030
More than 90 per cent of the Vaillant Group’s global CO2 emissions are generated at the company’s production sites and through the use of company vehicles. In order to halve its CO2 emissions by 2030, the company will use electricity from renewable energy sources to the greatest possible extent at sites where this hasn’t already happened. In many countries, including Germany, the UK and France, the Vaillant Group already purchases electrical energy from renewable sources. In addition, the Vaillant Group is investing in increasing the energy efficiency of production facilities and buildings. The growing share of vehicles with climate-friendly drive systems will reduce the vehicle fleet’s annual CO2 emissions by around 50 per cent by 2030. In aggregate, these measures will reduce CO2 emissions from the annual level of around 60,000 tonnes in 2018 to less than 30,000 tonnes by 2030. Thereby, the Vaillant Group is making a contribution to limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius.
Offsetting CO2 emissions via afforestation projects
The second focus of the Vaillant Group’s climate strategy is about offsetting the remaining emissions by means of afforestation projects, starting this year. Forests are able to capture the climate-damaging greenhouse gas CO2 from the atmosphere immediately and store it over the long term. As part of long-term projects, the Vaillant Group will plant new areas of forest in emerging countries. Specific projects are currently being planned and selected in Central and South America. In particular, the focus is on natural forest and agroforestry – an agricultural production system that combines elements of arable farming with elements of forestry. The newly created areas of forest will fully offset the emissions remaining after the reduction measures by 2030. In order to be climate-neutral as early as 2020, the Vaillant Group purchases CO2 certificates from existing and certified afforestation projects.
The SEEDS sustainability programme
Since 2011, the Vaillant Group has been consolidating its global sustainability activities in the strategic programme SEEDS. The name of the programme stands for Sustainability in Environment, Employees, Development & Solutions and Society. In these fields of focus, the company previously set binding and measurable targets for 2020, implementing specific measures and monitoring the results on an ongoing basis. With the relaunch of SEEDS, the Vaillant Group is setting new sustainability targets for 2030 in its four fields of focus – and making the company climate-neutral, starting this year, is one of them. In this regard, the heating technology specialist can build on a solid foundation. Between 2010 and 2020, the Vaillant Group already reduced its CO2 emissions and its energy consumption by approximately 30 per cent (in relation to production minutes). Accordingly, the Vaillant Group has clearly surpassed the target it has set itself – a 25 per cent reduction by 2020. On account of the systematic implementation of its sustainability strategy, the Vaillant Group was presented with the prestigious German Sustainability Award in 2015, distinguishing it as Germany’s most sustainable large company.
About the Vaillant Group
The Vaillant Group is an internationally active company based in Remscheid, Germany, which operates in the fields of heating, ventilation and air-conditioning technology. As one of the global market and technology leaders, the Vaillant Group develops and manufactures customised products, systems and services to provide a comfortable living environment. Its product portfolio ranges from efficient heating devices based on conventional energy sources to system solutions for using renewable energy. In the financial year 2020, the company, which has been family-owned since its foundation in 1874, generated sales of more than €2.7 billion with its workforce of about 15,000.