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Biogen, which specialises in researching and treating neurodegenerative diseases and autoimmune disorders, has achieved a net zero carbon footprint across all its offices throughout Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Latin America and Asia.

Biogen says it reached its target by increasing efficiencies throughout its buildings and manufacturing processes, generating clean energy on-site and investing in environmental projects to fully offset the remaining carbon associated with its business.

Culture of mindfulness

At its UK site, Biogen reduced energy consumption by 35% in five years, a reduction of 150 tonnes of CO2. The company reduced demand on boilers and chillers and reduced unnecessary lighting. The firm also made use of on-site food recycling and hosted an energy awareness day.

Biogen UK and Ireland MD Terry O’Regan said: “As one of Biogen’s key sites, the UK is committed to maintaining and increasing our sustainability, and nurturing an internal culture of energy and waste mindfulness.”

To achieve carbon neutral status, Biogen invested in sustainable technologies such as energy-efficient heating and cooling. The firm also diverts more than 99% of waste from landfill by recycling, composting or using energy-from-waste systems.

Employing 7,500 people worldwide, Biogen has also invested in programmes which fund wind, solar and hydropower across the United States, Denmark and Switzerland, and has encouraged its suppliers, which account for around 70% of emissions associated with Biogen, to manage their energy usage and set carbon emissions targets.

Discipline

The company’s Corporate Citizenship Report also reported Biogen had achieved a 72% reduction in water intensity, with a target of 80% by 2020, and reduced emissions intensity by 70%.

Biogen CEO George A. Scangos said: “The same intellectual discipline and rigour that drives our science is reflected in our corporate citizenship. This includes improving patient access and health outcomes while strengthening our commitment to environmental sustainability, philanthropy, employee development and community improvement.”

Earlier this year, Biogen was included as the top most sustainable company in the world on the Global 100 Index released by media and investment company Corporate Knights.

Matt Field

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