Armstrong Fluid Technology’s sustainability initiative – Planet Proposition – is celebrating a successful second year, with significant energy savings achieved via its HVAC solutions, solid progress towards its key operational environmental goals and new community projects in the UK and overseas.
The Planet Proposition sustainability initiative kicked off in 2013, with leadership teams in Armstrong sites in Canada, USA, China, India and the UK signing up to the Charter. It has three strands: Our Solutions (energy efficient systems which help customers reduce energy consumption, save money and lower carbon emissions); Our Environment (improved environmental performance in company operations); and Our Community (educating and supporting Armstrong stakeholders and neighbours to make environmentally responsible choices at work and at home).
Our Solutions: Since the introduction of the Energy Savings Dashboard, Armstrong Design Envelope HVAC solutions have saved customers more than 630 million kWh of energy, representing a carbon saving of more than 212,000 tonnes of CO2, and a cost saving of almost £40.5 million. This year has seen a particular commitment to drive down energy consumption in data centres and district energy schemes. Keys to the success of Armstrong solutions include demand-based control (matching energy usage automatically to varying requirements for heating and cooling throughout the day), off-site manufacture, and advanced system integration (to optimise the energy efficient operation of each system component).
Our Environment: As part of Planet Proposition, Armstrong sites in Canada, USA, China and the UK are committed to reducing their own monthly electricity, gas and water consumption. A programme of energy monitoring has been in operation in all plants since 2014. This consists of data loggers on gas, electricity and water meters feeding through Armstrong’s Eco-Pulse platform into a central display that shows current and historical consumption. This enables sites to trend patterns of use and to identify and fix anomalies as they occur. A particular success story is a 40% reduction in water consumption at Armstrong’s facility in Halesowen, West Midlands, made possible by recycling the water used in the testing of packaged plant rooms, and via investment in a new system of bacterial filters in the gentlemen’s toilets which prevents repeated flushing of the urinals.
Solid progress has also been made towards the company’s Waste Minimisation and Recycling Targets. The amount of waste sent to landfill is monitored on a monthly basis, as well as the amount recycled or used to produce energy. Improvements have led to significantly increased amounts of recycling in many of Armstrong’s facilities and the Halesowen site has achieved zero waste to landfill in the last year.
Our Community: A wide range of community projects have been organised throughout Planet Proposition’s second year, encompassing fundraising for local good causes, employee health and wellbeing initiatives, links with education and local training outreach programmes, student placements, an employee sustainable travel scheme, tree planting schemes and the organisation of green awareness days. This summer has seen the final of Armstrong’s UK competition for schools, which is now in its third year. This year’s challenge saw 655 children from 26 local schools (in the Birmingham and Manchester areas near to Armstrong sites) enter the ‘Story to a Sustainable Future’ competition. Children in the Key Stage 2 age-group created comic strips to show what traits an 'eco superhero' would have, and how he/she would help to save the planet. The shortlisted finalists travelled to The Crystal in London on June 24th for the prize-giving event.
Steve Cooper, Armstrong Fluid Technology’s Director – Sustainable Design commented: “This year’s achievements, across all three strands of our Planet Proposition, have been really impressive, particularly when you consider the pressures that the economic climate places on both companies and individuals. Improving environmental performance has become more than an initiative for us over the last two years, and has become our new way of approaching business on an everyday basis.
“The prize-giving event for our annual School’s Competition provides a great focus for looking back at all that has been achieved over the past year and setting our sights on the future.”