In focus

Life cycle assessments conducted for Chemistry and Packaging

The direct emissions of the Chemistry and Packaging divisions account for only a small proportion of the total carbon dioxide generated in their products’ production cycles.

The CPH Group has made major efforts over the past few years to reduce its carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. Oil has been superseded by more ecofriendly energy sources; the Perlen operating site has substantially lowered its CO2 emissions by using steam from a local waste incineration facility and by constructing a biomass power plant; and the Packaging Division’s Müllheim site now uses green electricity for all its energy needs.

The Group’s Paper Division has been producing an annual life cycle assessment for five years now. But for the 2019 version, the treeze company further analyzed the ecological impact of the products of its Chemistry and Packaging divisions. The findings: the direct emissions caused through the manufacture of the various products at the Group’s operating sites account for no more than 11% at the most of the total carbon dioxide generated throughout their production cycle. In fact, up to two thirds of such CO2 emissions are generated by suppliers in their provision of the raw materials required.

It’s not just at the Paper Division, which transforms some 500 000 tonnes of recovered paper a year into new paper products, that recycling is a key activity within the CPH Group. The Chemistry Division increasingly regenerates used molecular sieves, and is currently embarking on an investment project that will enable it to regenerate additional volumes of depleted deuterium oxide at its Rüti site. A new waste-water treatment plant is also being planned for its China operations. The Packaging Division, meanwhile, is actively involved in PVC recycling, since the disposal of its films after use puts a noticeable strain on the environment in carbon emission terms.

“Sustainable production is a key concern of ours throughout the CPH Group,” confirms Group CEO Peter Schildknecht. “And these life cycle assessments give us the data and the insights we need to even better plan our actions to further reduce our CO2 emissions.”