CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Lubrizol continues to take action to further its environmental stewardship. This Earth Day, that includes pledging greater reductions in the company’s environmental footprint, with new goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and waste across its global manufacturing sites. The company also plans to align more of its corporate giving with environmental causes, including recently announced commitments.
“With Lubrizol technology in more than half of the vehicles on Earth and touching the everyday lives of billions of people through a variety of solutions in a wide array of products, the company’s impact today is tremendous,” says Elizabeth Grove, Chief Sustainability Officer, Lubrizol. “We have even more opportunity in the years ahead with our sustainable mission goals and new environmental stewardship goals, which will reduce our footprint, bring greater impact from our handprint and improve the environment in the communities we call home.”
Lubrizol is committing to reducing the company’s Scope 1 and Scope 2 Greenhouse Gas emissions by 20% by 2030. In the past year, Lubrizol sites have continued to migrate to cleaner-burning natural gas for heat and transportation, recaptured energy that can be used for heat, instituted new processes to reduce energy consumption and upgraded the efficiency of the company’s lighting, production and office equipment, among other efforts. Reduction targets for Scope 3 emissions, including reducing raw material and transportation impacts, will be added later this year.
In addition to its footprint contributions, the company’s handprint opportunities are immense. In 2020, the company committed to help the world Move Cleaner, enabling a 50% reduction in vehicle emissions by 2040. In addition, the company committed to helping its customers Create Smarter, increasing the circularity impact of its products by 25% by 2028, Lubrizol’s centennial.
Outside of these direct opportunities to influence emissions reduction, the company also is pledging to increase funding to causes that ensure climate change resilience. This includes a multi-year partnership with Cleveland Metroparks in Northeast Ohio, home to the company’s global headquarters, to make the Park District’s 16,000 forested acres more resilient to the impact of climate change. With funding from The Lubrizol Foundation, the Metroparks will undertake new research, including calculating the amount of CO2 captured by its trees, understanding storage and sequestration across its 16,000 forest acres and developing guidelines to embed resilience to the impacts of climate change into forestry and conservation strategies.
The company also is one of several Berkshire Hathaway companies donating to The Nature Conservancy’s Plant a Billion Trees Campaign, with the goal of planting a billion trees across the planet. The Lubrizol Foundation’s support for the Montana State Parks Foundation and Armand Bayou Nature Center in Texas are also focused on preserving biodiversity in the places where our employees live.
In the last year, Lubrizol employees across the globe have participated in community clean ups, partnered with local ecologic fruit and vegetable producers and encouraged employees to make personal commitments to environmental change, amongst many other activities.
For years, Lubrizol facilities have been reducing their water use through a variety of purposeful activities, including recycling hot steam condensate water and optimizing heating water circuits. To further protect water resources, Lubrizol will conduct water risk assessments at all Lubrizol manufacturing sites in 2021, repeating this process biennially to determine opportunities for additional improvements. The company also will sponsor annual waterbody restoration activities in its local communities.
As part of its handprint, Lubrizol science is helping reduce water use across a variety of industries. In its homecare business, a Lubrizol biodegradable polymer helps laundry powder manufacturers reduce their operations’ water usage in processing, while also saving energy. The sustainability benefits of this ingredient also extend to the end consumer because detergent is formulated to maintain high performance even when washing clothes in cold water. Lubrizol chemistry is also used in easy-to-install plumbing systems that deliver safe, clean drinking water throughout the world.
Finally, the company has pledged to decrease the impact of its waste by 10% by 2030. This includes reducing the amount of waste generated, reducing scrap and increasing recyclability. The company has already made significant progress in reducing pre-packing waste, reclassifying and improving waste packaging, and converting wastewater into meaningful use.
As one example, the company’s manufacturing site in Avon Lake, Ohio, is sending water treatment waste to a partner’s facility to undergo anaerobic digestion, which converts the carbon-based waste into compressed natural gas (CNG). This conversion uses natural biological processes that are similar to how leaves on the forest floor are digested.
With extensive regulatory review and viability testing now complete, the plant is using commercial digestion to convert of a portion of its water treatment waste. This initiative significantly improves sustainability and circular usage of carbon-based materials, with the potential to eliminate 60 percent of the plant’s landfill waste while generating clean electricity. Eventually, the facility’s 4.2 million pounds of waste could generate more than 1 million cubic feet of natural gas annually, which will be added to the electrical grid in the Cleveland area and used in CNG-powered municipal vehicles.
To learn more about Lubrizol’s sustainable goals and progress, view the company’s 2021 Company Report.
The Lubrizol Corporation, a Berkshire Hathaway Company, leverages its unmatched science to unlock immense possibilities at the molecular level, driving sustainable and measurable results to help the world Move Cleaner, Create Smarter and Live Better. Founded in 1928, Lubrizol owns and operates more than 100 manufacturing facilities, sales and technical offices around the world and has approximately 8,800 employees. For more information, visit www.Lubrizol.com.
Cody Adams, Senior Public Relations Manager, Global Communications