GEA Group AG announced a comprehensive climate strategy. With the corresponding climate targets, GEA is making a clear commitment to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions along its entire value chain by 2040. The company has submitted its net-zero commitment and 2030 interim targets to the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi), the globally recognized, independent body for reviewing climate targets. Validation of GEA’s interim targets by SBTi is expected in the second half of 2021, confirming GEA’s targets are aligned with the latest climate science and are effectively contributing to the 1.5 degrees Celsius target of the Paris Agreement.
“GEA is taking bold action to support the global transition to a net-zero economy. Our new climate strategy positions GEA as the leader in our peer group. We are pursuing the most comprehensive and ambitious climate strategy in the mechanical engineering industry,” says Stefan Klebert, CEO GEA Group AG. “We are incorporating our entire value chain into this effort, tackling both direct and indirect emissions. And by doing so, we are taking clear action in line with GEA’s purpose: ‘engineering for a better world’.”
By investing globally in Gold Standard-certified projects to generate clean energy from wind, sun, biomass and waste gases, GEA’s own operations are already climate-neutral since the beginning of 2021. Established by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), the Gold Standard certifies climate protection projects that have highest possible positive climate impact. “Carbon offsets for the emissions that we cannot yet avoid is, of course, only the first step on our net-zero journey. That is why we are working to transform our business operations to effectively contribute to limiting global warming,” explains Klebert.
2030 interim targets submitted
In addition to GEA’s 2040 net-zero target, the company has submitted ambitious interim science-based targets across all relevant scopes. Compared to the baseline year 2019, GEA aims to:
Reduce GHG emissions from its own operations (Scopes 1 and 2) by 60 percent by 2030
Reduce GHG emissions from the customer use phase of its products (Scope 3) by 18 percent by 2030
Immediate actions to reduce Scope 1 and 2 emissions
To reduce its Scope 1 and 2 emissions, GEA is pursuing multiple initiatives. First, the company aims to gradually increase its share of renewable power to 100 percent within the next five years. To achieve this, GEA will make use of renewable energy certificates, extend its own green power generation and look into long-term power purchase agreements. Second, GEA will boost the energy efficiency of its global infrastructure with initiatives to modernize office buildings and production facilities, prioritizing the 29 most energy-intensive production sites covering 80 percent of total group wide energy consumption.
Third, over time and where feasible, GEA will green its global fleet of approximately 4,300 company cars. A green mobility policy introduced today stipulates that all new incentive cars for GEA managers in Germany will be 100 percent electric. The company will invest in wall boxes at German GEA sites to support the rollout. “We want to lead by example,” remarks CEO Klebert. “Our transition to a zero-emission fleet – starting with the cars for our management in Germany – shows we are taking clear and visible action.”
Reduction in Scope 3 emissions essential to achieving net-zero target
GEA’s innovative technologies have long played a decisive role in reducing GHG emissions in the various end customer industries it serves, foremost food, beverage and pharma. With the ever-advancing resource efficiency of its production and process technology, GEA enables customers to reach their own sustainability goals. Nevertheless, in direct comparison to GEA’s own GHG emissions, indirect emissions from suppliers and products sold – so-called Scope 3 – make up more than 95 percent of GEA’s overall GHG emissions.
The company’s climate strategy therefore focuses on identifying climate impact hotspots in GEA’s product portfolio and further boosting the energy efficiency of GEA products. GEA’s comprehensive portfolio – ranging from components and industrial machinery to complete processing lines and factories – will be thoroughly analyzed in the coming years. This level of transparency will enable the company to prioritize the climate roadmap and further develop sustainable customer solutions.
“Product innovation will be the key lever to reach our 18 percent reduction target for Scope 3 in 2030. It’s an ambitious goal, but I’m convinced we’ll achieve it; engineering excellence is GEA’s core strength,” comments Klebert. “For instance, we are already equipping customers such as smoothie-producer innocent with machinery that enables the carbon-free production of beverages. Going forward, we will employ such climate-smart solutions on an ever-increasing scale.” In addition to installing new technologies, GEA modernizes existing customer plants to reduce their climate impact as much as possible.
Sustainability as key pillar in GEA’s Factory of the Future
Optimizing our manufacturing footprint, which includes reducing the environmental impact of our sites, is another important factor for achieving GEA’s climate and sustainability goals. GEA laid the cornerstone for a new, climate-neutral production facility in Koszalin, Poland, on May 21, 2021 – a concrete example of how GEA aims to decarbonize its infrastructure. The facility will produce its own energy by integrating photovoltaic panels on the roof and storing power in batteries which can be used to power fleet vehicles. In addition, a combined heat and power (CHP) system will be used to generate electricity and heat, which can be used to heat and cool the site. LED lighting, best-in-class building insulation and low emissivity glass are all part of the factory’s climate-neutral building concept.
Journey towards a comprehensive ESG strategy
GEA’s climate strategy is the first building block of a comprehensive Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) strategy at GEA. Beyond climate protection, this strategy will also take social and corporate governance aspects into account. It will reinforce the company’s commitment to United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs) and become a foundational element of ‘Mission 26’, GEA’s new corporate strategy that is currently under development. ‘Mission 26’ will be presented at GEA’s next Capital Markets Day in September 2021.
…and will contribute to protect 17,872 hectares of forest in the Amazon area annually
The Eckes-Granini Group with all its subsidiaries will operate climate neutral throughout Europe as of January 1, 2021. Europe-wide, the Group emitted 43,082 tons of carbon into the atmosphere in 2019 – caused, among other things, by energy and heating, waste processing, employee commuting and business trips. This is the result of a profound analysis of the companies’ carbon footprint in cooperation with ClimatePartner. The solution provider of climate action for companies has been supporting the leading supplier of fruit juices and fruit beverages since this year. With regard to the fight against climate change, the Eckes-Granini Group strives for zero greenhouse gas emissions. In order to get much closer to this overall goal, the Group will offset 43,000 tons carbon emissions of its direct business activities through a carbon offset project conducted by ClimatePartner in Portel, Brazil. Thereby, Eckes-Granini ensures the protection of 17,872 hectares of forest in the Amazon region per year.
Eckes-Granini offsets its emissions by supporting a forest protection project in Portel, in the Brazilian state of Pará. The project protects a total of 151,105 hectares of forest each year. It also provides alternative sources of income and education for the residents of Portel, e.g. through the cultivation of pepper or the training of forest rangers.
Commitment to climate action across Europe
The German subsidiary of Eckes-Granini (hohes C, granini) has already been climate neutral since 2019. This is a great success that was achieved through the implementation of numerous climate protection measures. These include the modernization of facilities, the purchase of green electricity and the reduction of fuel consumption in the logistics fleet. As of January 2021, the entire carbon footprint of all eleven European subsidiaries will be offset.
About ClimatePartner ClimatePartner is a solution provider of climate action for companies. ClimatePartner combines individual consulting with cloud-based software that is unique on the market. Customers can use it to calculate and reduce carbon emissions and compensate for unavoidable emissions. In this way, products and companies become climate neutral, which is confirmed by the ClimatePartner label. ClimatePartner offers carbon offset projects in different regions and with different technologies and standards. The additional social effects of the projects are particularly important: The 17 goals for sustainable development of the United Nations, the SDGs, are the benchmark here. ClimatePartner was founded in Munich in 2006 and today has more than 100 employees in Munich, Berlin, Essen, Vienna, Zurich and Yerevan and cooperates with more than 2,500 companies in 35 countries.
Tate & Lyle PLC, a leading global provider of food and beverage solutions and ingredients, is delighted to announce that its greenhouse gas emission reduction targets for 2030 have been approved by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) as consistent with levels required to meet the climate action goals of the Paris Agreement.
Announced in May 2020, Tate & Lyle’s commitment to a 30 % absolute reduction in Scope 1 and Scope 2 greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 is in line with the Paris Agreement’s central aim to keep a global temperature rise this century well below 2°C. The company’s commitment to reduce emissions from the value chain (Scope 3) by 15 % over the same period meets the SBTi’s criteria for ambitious value chain goals.
Tate & Lyle is one of only around 65 food and beverage operators globally to have its environmental commitments approved by SBTi, a collaboration between CDP, the United Nations Global Compact, World Resources Institute, and the World Wide Fund for Nature.
75 years of gas safety and performance optimization
A world market leader from Germany is celebrating its birthday – for 75 years now, the Witten-based company Witt-Gasetechnik has been setting the standard for safety and efficiency in the use of industrial gases. Gas mixers and analysers, pressure regulators and valves – Witt products can be found in industrial applications all over the world. And just in time for the company anniversary, the manufacturer is working on the next milestone in the company’s history under the banner “Witt 4.0”.
Did you know ? Flashback arrestors for welding applications, used worldwide ever since, were first introduced to the market in 1945 by the German manufacturer Witt. Company founder Paul Witt revolutionised the handling of flammable gases with this small but immensely important component. These safety devices remain a globally demanded part of the Witt product portfolio. The manufacturer also offers a comprehensive range of valves for industrial gas applications, such as safety relief valves, gas non-return valves and pressure regulators.
However, the company has long since developed into other niches in the field of gas technology, and with its 200+ employees continues to set new standards. The range of gas mixers is unrivalled internationally and the gas analysers and leak testers also enjoy an excellent reputation.
But even after three quarters of a century, Witt is still young and modern. Its R & D team is constantly improving and expanding the product range, thus responding to changing requirements, and developing game-changing innovations.
Witt 4.0 – smart gas technology
A current example is the shift to digital solutions for networked manufacturing in Industry 4.0 – a change that does not stop at gas technology. Witt is one of the pioneers: Dr. Richard Benning has been driving development forward for years. “Witt 4.0” is what the managing partner, who is the third generation to head the family business, calls this project, thus giving a name to the next revolution from Witt.
The technological breakthrough was achieved two years ago. Witt presented the first prototypes of “smart” fittings: safety devices that can record and transmit important parameters such as pressures and temperatures via sensors. Witt’s engineers managed the feat of integrating the electronics directly into the fittings. Fully integrated valves offer real commercial added value: real-time data from a single device, little space required, quick installation, easy maintenance. In other words, performance and cost advantages compared to piecemeal solutions.
Smart dome pressure regulators that can measure gas pressure and temperature, calculate flow rates and transmit them to a network are now an integral part of the product catalogue. Soon further “smart” fittings will be added. But that is not all.
Data anywhere and anytime
Witt has also long since equipped gas analysers and gas mixers with electronic control systems specially developed for this purpose. All relevant data is recorded, evaluated and output. In this way, these systems, parallel to the smart fittings, are seamlessly networked in the production process and can be controlled “intelligently”.
All components are interconnected via the local network, and can also be read and controlled over the internet. The data converge in real time at the control station controller. Via PC or tablet, the right people have all information available at all times. If something goes wrong or needs to be reset, they can intervene immediately: The networked gas technology thus also stands for more precise process control and minimum rejects, i.e. for maximum efficiency.
Global company with local presence
Witt 4.0 is another important building block for the company to maintain and expand its leading market position. The manufacturer has always worked meticulously on its portfolio and is consistently expanding it. The Witten-based company has long been regarded as a “one-stop shop” for everything relevant to the safe handling of gases.
The products are manufactured in a state-of-the-art production facility in Witten. Quality management is comprehensive, all relevant standards are met and are validated by external accreditations.
Also to know, Witt generates well over half of its sales outside Germany. Through subsidiaries and sales partners, the company is represented on all continents and offers its customers local advice and service.