Production at Novozymes is on a large scale, and producing enzymes requires a lot of electricity. The company’s Danish production sites alone consume an amount of electricity equivalent to upwards of 60,000 Danish homes. However, a few years ago Novozymes took a series of steps to reduce its energy consumption in Denmark.
”Although production is markedly increasing, we have since reduced our CO2 emissions here in Denmark by a third, in other words a total of 150,000 tons. This big saving has mainly been achieved by investing in new equipment that uses less energy.”
So says Flemming Funch, Vice President Quality, Environment & Safety at Novozymes. The energy savings have been found in collaboration with DONG Energy, and have involved extensive investments in new and more energy-efficient equipment in the Danish factories.
Reducing CO2 emissions by 150,000 tons is equivalent to removing 60,000 cars from Europe’s roads.
”At the same time, Novozymes has undertaken to use the money we save on the electricity bill to purchase a total quantity of CO2-neutral electricity equivalent to 32 of the 95 wind turbines at the Horns Rev II offshore wind farm.”
Investing in energy savings
The original target was for the reduction in CO2 to be achieved in 2012 and, although it has already been achieved in 2011, Novozymes will continue the efforts to reduce energy consumption.
To date Novozymes has invested DKK 20 million in energy savings in Denmark alone. In addition, energy savings are incorporated in decisions on all essential capital expenditure, and the investments are being made at a global level.
”For us, becoming more energy efficient represents an economic gain too. At the same time, this strategy fits well with the products we sell to our customers," says Flemming Funch.
Novozymes’ ambition is to reduce CO2 emissions globally by 75 million tons. This will be achieved by Novozymes’ customers using biotech solutions that enable them to produce more using fewer resources. In 2010 Novozymes’ customers achieved CO2 savings of approx. 40 million tons, equivalent to more than two-thirds of Denmark’s total CO2 emissions in one year.
”Although our own CO2 emissions are more than 100 times smaller than what can be saved by using our biotech products, we also consider we have to take responsibility for our own impact on the environment and reduce our own energy consumption,” says Flemming Funch.