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Our sustainability efforts

Industrial processes
have an impact on our ecosystems

We firmly believe in the principles of sustainable, environmentally conscious value creation that is in tune with society and nature.

We live and breathe our environmental management system, in accordance with DIN EN ISO 14001:2015. For us, that means we don’t just strive to meet our legal obligations and other requirements, but to exceed them.

We do this by continuously improving our processes.

EXCELLENT CASTINGS, ALMOST WITHOUT FOOTPRINT

We work hard to get better every single day. Thanks to our early transition to induction melting, we have been avoiding emissions associated with cupola furnaces and the burning of foundry coke for many years now. The complete switch to renewable energy in January 2023 has eliminated emissions from our melting operations almost entirely.

Feedstock for our casting materials (GJS and GJL) consists to of 90% scrap, for example tracks or chips and cut-offs from milling or stamping. Only 10% is primary raw material, making our casting production extremely resource-efficient already.

ENERGY USE: LESS, AND CLEANER

We’re an energy-intensive operation. As such, we introduced an energy management system to ISO 50001 back in 2013. It commits us to continuously improve our energy performance, with a particular focus on reducing energy consumption. Heat recovered from our air compressors provides the heating for our hot water supply, as well as for our new semi-automatic coating plant that dries the blackwash on our molds and cores. This alone saves half a million kWh in natural gas annually, which is roughly equivalent to 115,000kg of CO2 per year.

Other measures include the ongoing conversion to energy-efficient lighting across our entire facility, lower-energy sand cooling thanks to closed circuits, substitution of fossil fuels (i.e., transition from gas heating to infrared), as well as digitization of our melting operations.

Since 2022, we’ve been establishing strategic sustainability management in our foundry. As a dedicated department, the sustainability function reports directly to management. It ensures our sustainability efforts are carried out systematically, holistically and with purpose. For the first time, this work has now been captured and published in a sustainability report. We’re reporting in accordance with the German Sustainability Codex, using Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) indicators, with greenhouse gas accounting since 2022, to GHG Protocol standard. Our sustainability goals are aligned with the Paris Agreement and with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Our sustainability report serves as an internal mechanism to record the status quo of our sustainability activities, guide continuous improvement and work towards goals. But it is also a way of giving internal and external stakeholders a transparent overview of sustainability aspects associated with our business.

TRANSPARENCY AND INCENTIVE: SUSTAINBILITY REPORT 2022

Avoided waste is the best kind of waste. That’s why the continuous reduction of the waste we produce is a big priority for us. More than 95% of mold sand is recycled in-house. Where waste is unavoidable, we try to find recycling options. For example, we compress EPS chips created during pattern production into blocks and return them to our EPS suppliers, who use them to make insulation.

An important part of our R&D efforts consists of sustainability projects – around noise or emissions reduction, via improved use of resources, energy efficiency or direct CO2 reduction. Together with foundry equipment specialist AAGM and the foundry institute at the Technical University Freiburg, we’ve been part of a research project exploring more environmentally friendly alternatives to furan-resin-bound mold materials. The aim is to create a scientific basis for a switch from anorganic to organic binder systems.

A high product quality is rightly considered as inherently more sustainable. Through the exact control of desired material properties, we deliver products with the longest life spans. The avoidance of scrap means no production effort is futile. That’s why we take extra care to ensure castings are perfect first time. Pursuing this goal relentlessly has resulted in a scrap rate of less than 1%.