Ensuring we limit any negative impact on the environment and protect the natural resources we rely on, creating long-term sustainability for the business.
We adopt technologies, materials and processes that ensure we minimise our impact on the environment and maximise our use of sustainable resources.
Vitec's products and processes
We continue to implement initiatives aimed at sustaining and protecting the environment in the areas of energy efficiency, reducing carbon emissions, water use and waste; and sustainable use of materials, packaging and water disposal. We also encourage a culture of environmentally sustainable behaviour at work and ensure that our employees understand how they can contribute. Operational productivity efficiencies in the Production Solutions Division resulted in a 24% reduction in the use of air freight between business units in 2019.
Our products and services have a comparatively low impact on the environment. We use low hazard materials, minimise the use of resources during the manufacturing process and search for materials that are sustainable and can be recycled or reused. Our efforts and environmental awareness have continued to evolve, not only to comply with regulations but also to make our business better and more sustainable.
The Bury St Edmunds, UK site for Productions Solutions' manufacturing and engineering operations was purpose-built for modern manufacturing and specialises in advanced technology in areas such as robotics, automation and broadcast studio equipment. It includes a uniqe manufacturing process for the development of carbon-fibre for the flowtech tripod - a world first. The facility was required to meet the needs of a diverse group of employees, while fostering improved work flow, efficiency, productivity and making optimal use of the space. The new site is on-third smaller than the previous location and a goal was to reduce the use of electricity by 30% and gas by 60% through a combination of factors including: the introduction of LED lighting; no requirement for hearting in the factory due to improved thermal properties; three new compressors that deliver electrical use savings; and a more efficient paint oven. Another key change has been the improved flow of materials from the assembly area to the shop floor, reducing travel time and improving energy efficiency.
Another key change has been the improved flow of materials from the assembly area to the shop floor; reducing travel time and improving energy efficiency.
We monitor and track our usage of electricity, gas and water across our manufacturing, warehouse and administrative sites and make efforts, where possible, to reduce our usage. We replace old machinery with more energy efficient models as they reach the end of their use, and in 2019 we upgraded a laser engraver in the Bury St Edmunds, UK, factory with a newer model saving 50% in energy consumption, 90% on spares and 50% on service costs.
Many buildings within the Group have timer and motion sensors for lighting to save on electricity usage. The majority of the Group's sites already have or are working towards having LED lighting throughout, which will significantly cut our overall electricity usage. For example, in the UK, the three main production sites have all installed energy-efficient LED lighting, some including sensors which only turn lights on when activity is taking place. Other buildings have programmable thermostats that are centrally managed to optimise heating and cooling needs.
The electricity contracts with Green Certificates at our two main sites in Italy were renewed in 2017 until 2021, confirming Vitec's commitment to use energy generated by renewable sources. Sites in Italy and Costa Rica maintained thir ISO 14001 complaince which were renewed in 2019. We are pleased to report that the Bury St Edmunds, UK site received its accreditation under the ISO 14001 standard in 2019 after developing and implementing the necessary environmental management systems at the new facility.
In 2019 we replaced four petrol/diesel based cars in our fleet with plug-in hybrid vehicles and installed charging points in both the office car park and at the employees' homes to fully benefit from the reduced running costs and environmental impact.
Neil Martin, Finance Director, Vitec Imaging Solutions, UK
Greenhouse Gas Reporting and Energy Usage
Our 2019 Greenhouse Gas Emissions (Scope 1 and 2) and Energy Usage compated to 2018 are set out on this page. Emissions arising frm onsite energy use and owned transport have been recorded at 25 of our sites in the 12 months ended 30 September 2019. We have selected these sites as they are material operating sites for the Group including operations at Feltre, Italy; Bury St Edmunds, UK; Cartago, Costa Rica; Irvine, USA; Ashby De La Zouch, UK; Stroud, UK; Ra'anana, Israel; Cary, USA; and Shelton, USA. These sites collectively account for over 95% of the Group by revenve. Smaller sites have been excluded as their size and operations are not material for Greenhouse Gas Reporting or Energy Usage reporting.
Our emissions and energy reporting complies with the appropriate regulatoins and guidance as published in 2018 and 2019 on environmental reporting and we are taking proactive steps to minimise our impact in this area. We have updated reporting since 2018 to reflect requirements for quoted companies introduced by The Companies (Directors' Report) and Limited Liability Partnerships (Energy and Carbon Reporting) Regulations 2018 effective from 1 April 2019.
In reporting our Greenhouse Gas Emissions we have followed the UK Government's Environmental Reporting Guidelines issued in March 2019. Our operational carbon footprint is stated in tonnes carbon dioxide (CO2) equivalent and covers Scope 1 and 2 emissions as described in the GHG Protocol - Corporate Standard (revised edition). The financial control approach has been applied in our corporate GHG reporting.
We have selected a reporting date of 30 September to enable accurate data to be collated in time for inclusion in the Annual Report. The intensity Ration applied is tonnes Total Carbon Dioxide equivalent (CO2e) per £m of Group Revenue.
Scope 1 Emissions (Direct emissions from our own operations e.g. fuel combustion) are converted to CO2, equivalent figures using conversion factors published by BEIS/DEFRA in June 2019. These conversion factors are also used for calculating UK and global transport energy use in kWh. An "average" vehicle is assumed in all transport calculations.
Scope 2 Emissions (Indirect emissions generated from purchased electricity) are calculated based on the "location" method outlined in GHG Protocol. For all UK facilities we use the BEIS/DEFRA 2019 conversion factors. For all non-USA facilities we use national carbon intensity factors for grid purchased electricity from a variety of sources; including grid suppliers and national Environment Agencies. For USA sources we use the latest regional intensity factors available from the Environmental Protection Agency's Emissions & Generation Resource Integrated Database (eGrid 2018).
As can be seen from the tables the greatest impact is from indirect Scope 2 emissions from the purchase electricity used in our operational activities.
GHG Scope 1 & 2 Emissions
|Global Total (excluding UK)||3,856||3,518|
|UK Proportion of Total||15.8%||24.2%|
|Total Scope 1 + 2 Intensity||12.1||12.0|
# CO2e tonnes per £m of Group Revenue
|Global Total (excluding UK)||15,432,223|
|UK Proportion of Total||16.8%|
Sustainable resource management
Various initiatives around the Group took place in 2019 to build on our work to reduce the amount of waste created in our operations. At our factory in Bury St Edmunds, UK, improved waste stream segregation and labelling, combined with employee engagement in the process, has resulted in a project to ensure that zero waste is sent to landfill. All waste is classed as Refuse Derived Fuel ("RDF") which is sorted, shredded, and used to generate energy at recovery facilities, where they product electricity or heating for agriculture. At our Costa Rican site, electronic waste and lithium ion batteries are recycled as proper disposal prevents hazards and contamination. We sort waste for recycling at our manufacturing sites in Italy, the UK, the US, and Costa Rica using colour coded bins to improve segregation. Water free urinals and sensors for use of water for irrigation at our Costa Rican plant have also reduced water consumption.
Our Italian colleagues took part in a Green & Fit to Work week in September, where they were encouraged to get to work in an environmentally friendly way, either by car sharing, using public transport, cycling or walking.
In our Ra'anana office in Israel, colleagues have embraced a Green Revolution, whereby they aim to stop using disposable tools in order to reduce unnecessary waste.
Employees from the Production Solutions site in Costa Rica worked together with CEANA, and organisation which takes care of a reservoir supplying the local area and which promotes environmental education to the community around water conservation. An event was held with both employees and their families during which 60 native species of trees were planted near to the river to protect the reservoir.
Below: Team in Costa Rica and their families planted 60 tress to protect the local river basin