Interface operating Dutch facility on 100% renewable energy

Carpet tile manufacturer Interface has achieved a series of sustainability milestones at its European manufacturing facility in Scherpenzeel, the Netherlands.

As of January 2014, the company has been operating on 100% renewable energy, both electricity and gas, while using virtually zero water in its manufacturing processes and attaining zero waste to landfill.

The introduction of several innovations has enabled Interface to announce a 95% water reduction and 90% carbon reduction from January 2014.

Recently switching to ‘green gas’, its facility in Scherpenzeel uses gas created by anaerobic digestion of fish waste, which is filtered to natural gas and pumped into the grid. The significant reduction in water consumption has been largely due to the implementation of a water recirculation system through closed loop piping.

The achievements are a significant step towards Interface’s Mission Zero – the company’s pledge to eliminate any negative impact it has on the environment by 2020. The end result of Mission Zero is to become a “restorative enterprise”.

Interface started Mission Zero in 1996 and by 2013 it had reduced its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 80% and water use by 87% in Europe.

CEO of Interface in Europe, Rob Boogaard, said: “In the past three years we have taken huge strides towards our Mission Zero goal. To put it in context, as per January 2014, we are operating our European factories with a 90% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions compared to 1996 while the EU Commission has set an EU carbon reduction target of 40% by 2030.

“While our achievements are to be celebrated, this is certainly not a time to be complacent. For us, Mission Zero is not simply about reducing our own direct impacts – it’s also about taking full responsibility for the entire lifecycle of our products. Our goal is to cut the umbilical cord to oil, with the result that 44% of our raw materials in Europe are already recycled or bio-based.”

Leigh Stringer

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