Renovation
Energy Efficiency
Circularity
Sustainability

Sustainability Report 2021: Making solid progress towards our sustainability goals

Anthony Abbotts
Anthony Abbotts
1 January 1

Anthony Abbotts, Director of Public Affairs and Sustainability at ROCKWOOL Group, shares his thoughts after launching the ROCKWOOL Sustainability Report 2021.

Preparing our Sustainability Report is always a special time at ROCKWOOL; it’s a unique chance to dive deeply into our efforts, assess whether we’re on the right track and explain new initiatives that will help increase our positive impact. As a responsible business with sustainability underpinning everything we do, we often have good news to announce – and that was the case once again this year where we could share that our building insulation products sold in 2021 will save 20 TWh of heating energy. It’s difficult to imagine how much energy that actually is, but it’s the equivalent to the annual consumption of more than one million homes!

Documenting progress toward our sustainability goals

Fact-based and using third-party verified data, our Sustainability Report documents how our products contribute to the UN Sustainable Development Goals as well evaluating progress towards our own sustainability goals. And we’re making solid progress, reaching four of our intermediate sustainability goals before our 2022 deadline. This includes our goal on CO2 intensity – aided by the fact that we took significant measures to decarbonise several of our factories during 2021, and the impact of this will continue to kick-in over the years to come. We also met our intermediate goal on reclaimed materials, supported by the fact that we expanded our Rockcycle® reclaimed material service offering to three new countries – Russia, Croatia and Spain – which resulted in increasing the volume of reclaimed material that was recycled by 23 percent. For me, Rockcycle® is such an important initiative, as this way we help construction companies, building owners, and governments meet their recycling targets, and make a true difference for both the environment and climate.

Leading by example

It’s no secret that we believe in renovating the right way – and that means deep renovation, using healthy, circular, and non-combustible materials that results in energy savings of at least 60 percent. So we are proud to share how we led by example during 2021 by completing the renovation of an additional five of our own buildings, with one being our main office in Gladbeck, Germany, where the building’s energy demand was reduced by an impressive 83 percent! As energy efficient buildings are healthier and more comfortable, we are also happy that our colleagues working in there will benefit from their renovated space.

Time to take action

We’re operating during a time where it is very clear that action needs to be taken. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, more commonly called the IPCC, recently released their Sixth Assessment report[1], and concluded that climate change is intensifying and that we need to rapidly reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Through our own participation at COP26 last November, we saw that policy makers were finally beginning to understand that there is a disconnect between pledging to make a change and actually making the concrete short-term actions needed to get on track with climate objectives. So more than ever, renovating to improve the energy efficiency of buildings and reduce emissions is vital. We know that we can play an important role in creating a healthier, more sustainable built environment. That is also why we believe that our Sustainability Report makes a relevant read for a larger audience than ever – and we hope that we can inspire other businesses by our actions and our approach to sustainability.

[1] https://www.ipcc.ch/report/ar6/wg1/