We continue to advance initiatives across all our facilities and throughout our supply chain to minimize our impacts on the planet through responsible use of water, avoidance of waste and reduction of waste sent to a landfill.
Examples of progress at our facilities in 2021 include:
Reusing wastewater in Canada: Our team at our facility in Guelph, Canada, completed an investment in a skid-mounted wastewater treatment system that uses reverse osmosis to purify the wastewater. With this new system, the site can reuse nearly all the wastewater generated during manufacturing to feed boilers for heat in winter and to support cooling towers in the warmer months. Overall, the site is expected to reuse approximately 10 million liters of water each year. This initiative won an award from the City of Guelph’s Water Smart Business Program.
Using remediated ground water in Belgium: In 2021, at our facility in Beerse, Belgium, an innovative project helped the site reduce purchased potable water volumes to the lowest level in 20 years. Traditionally, potable water had been used in the site’s cooling towers, which consumed large amounts of water, especially in the summer when requirements are highest. After extensive testing and evaluation of a range of processes, a solution that replaced potable water with groundwater from an on-site soil remediation project was adopted and then supplemented by rainwater captured in the winter season. As a result, the site was able to reduce water withdrawal from the municipal water grid, helping safeguard potable water levels supplied for the local community.
Aligning with external water and waste standards: As part of our continuous improvement to measure and minimize our water and waste impacts, we are working toward achieving certification across selected facilities to two industry-leading tools and standards:
- the international Alliance for Water Stewardship Standard, which addresses sustainable water management, water dependencies and impacts, responsible water procedures, and building relationships with local water-related stakeholders; and
- Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI) TRUE Zero Waste certification, a program that rates how well facilities perform in minimizing their non-hazardous, solid wastes and maximizing their efficiency in the use of resources.