Kingspan pledges to cut its greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2030

Cavan-based Kingspan says its operations produce around 300,000 tonnes of carbon-dioxide every year

Insulation and building materials group Kingspan plans to boost its use of renewable energy and recycling to help eliminate the 300,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas it emits every year.

Kingspan pledged to effectively cut greenhouse gas emissions from its businesses around the world to zero by 2030 through a series of measures outlined on Tuesday.

These include generating one-fifth of its energy needs at its own factories, up from around 6 per cent today, and powering 60 per cent of its operations directly from renewable sources.

Cavan-headquartered Kingspan says that its operations produce around 300,000 tonnes of carbon-dioxide every year. The company aims to reduce this to a “net zero” by 2030, which means cutting emissions and taking steps to offset or neutralise whatever greenhouse gas its operations continue to produce by that time.

Kingspan has also committed to using plastic from one billion recycled bottles every year in its insulation products by 2030, and to ensuring that no waste from its operations is dumped at landfill sites.

Similarly, it will collect 100 million litres of rainfall every year to contribute to the water used in its businesses.

The company acknowledged that construction was one of the world’s biggest polluters, with the industry itself and buildings combined accounting for 39 per cent of all carbon emissions globally. It is also responsible for 30 per cent of the waste that ends up in landfill.

Urgent action

Bianca Wong, Kingspan's global head of sustainability, noted that the world had to cut carbon emissions by 45 per cent by 2030, and to zero by 2050, to protect the planet from climate change, but risked missing these goals.

“At Kingspan we recognise the need for all businesses to take urgent action,” she said.

Gene Murtagh, Kingspan chief executive, said climate change was the most important issue facing the world. "We are committed to driving a more sustainable approach to our business in response to these issues."

Kingspan is also joining the Ellen McArthur Foundation’s Circular Economy 100. The foundation is a charity established in 2010 that is dedicated to promoting the “circular economy” – recycling and reusing waste as a raw material to protect resources and the environment.