“As a global technology company, we consider the efficient use of resources and energy at all locations worldwide to be part of our entrepreneurial responsibility. By combining economic principles with ecological commitment, we are not only making a contribution to climate protection but are at the same time creating quantifiable added value for our Company,” explains Dr. Toralf Haag, President and CEO of the Voith Group.
With a view to implementing carbon neutrality quickly, Voith is going to switch to purchasing carbon-neutral electricity in the near future as well as offsetting unavoidable carbon emissions with compensation measures. At present, Voith already purchases one third of its electricity needs from renewable resources (FY 2017/18: 35.4 %). The Company will gradually increase the share of renewable energies, both in its own generation and in its purchasing. Furthermore, Voith is going to invest five million euros each year in energy efficiency, including its locations’ own generation.
Increasing energy efficiency over the long term
Energy efficiency is a key lever in achieving carbon neutrality. In this respect, Voith is building on consistent environmental management. The Voith internal Ecological Business Management is making a contribution to improving energy and resource efficiency at all locations. Since 2011/12, Voith has already succeeded in saving 28 percent of the energy consumed, 27 percent of the volume of waste and 44 percent of fresh water (FY 18/19). Over the coming years, Voith intends to make targeted investments totaling € 50 million into improving the energy efficiency of its own plant and buildings over the long term.
Of the 172 companies in the mechanical and plant engineering industry worldwide surveyed by the rating agency oekom research AG in 2017, Voith already belongs to the leading 20 percent with regard to sustainability activities. In the EcoVadis rating, Voith achieved Gold Status in 2018, making it one of the best five percent of the approximately 60,000 companies assessed around the world.
Environmental protection also makes economic sense
Decarbonization not only makes a positive contribution to humankind and the environment but provides Voith with long-term economic benefits. Digitalization of industry and climate protection are strategic focus areas for Voith. Climate change and digitalization are enormous challenges for the mechanical engineering industry but, at the same time, they provide immense opportunities. Over the longer term, Voith is adapting its own product portfolio to the decarbonization of industry and is simultaneously reducing its own carbon footprint.
“We continue on from Voith’s traditions as a family-owned company based on our understanding of sustainability: the obligation to ecologically clean and fair actions, and to return a profit over the long term. This is not only good for the environment and society in general but also makes economic sense,” says Voith CEO Haag.
The technology group’s core business today already addresses the global megatrends of digitalization, decarbonization and the circular economy: in the refinement of hydropower, in resource-conserving papermaking, or the electrification of mobility. The objective is to further expand the sustainability portfolio and become a key player in the post-carbon industry of the digital age.