Environmental Responsibility

At Vibracoustic we are continuously driving new initiatives to reduce our environmental impact. We are committed to reducing CO2 emissions and achieving scope 1 & 2* net CO2 neutrality by 2045. To reduce the footprint of our production processes and our products we are improving our energy efficiency, increasing our use of renewable energy, reducing waste, and utilizing sustainable and renewable materials in our products.

Our global initiatives are focused on larger-scale improvements, including installation of solar panels, elimination of hazardous substances in our production processes, and increasing recycled content in our raw materials. We are also making small, continuous improvements, such as implementing LED lighting, and reducing heating and cooling temperature set points to optimize energy use. Every small improvement will help us to reach our sustainability goals.

* Scope 1 & 2 emissions include direct emissions from own or controlled sources and indirect emissions from the generation of purchased energy

We want to reduce our environmental impact as much as possible. It is our collective responsibility to ensure that resources are equitably available to future generations.”

Axel Wersel, COO

We encourage our people to share new ideas when it comes to sustainability improvements. Even the smallest ideas can make a big impact.

Dr. Joerg Boecking, CTO

Energy Efficiency

Driving Vibracoustic Energy Efficiency

The Vibracoustic Energy Efficiency (VEE) aims to achieve our energy and CO2 targets through local measures. Site Energy Managers drive improvement measures, while regional VEE Managers track and evaluate regional initiatives. Additionally, the program has dedicated functions for topics such as green energy, machine specifications, and others. The VEE Committee, which includes members of the Vibracoustic Management Board, regularly review global and site-specific energy-efficiency projects.

The VEE Team tracks continuous improvement initiatives such as energy monitoring, compressed air leakage reduction, heating and cooling controls, start-up and shut-down procedure management, and LED lighting.

Reducing our emissions also means reducing our energy consumption. We aim to reduce our energy usage every year at all our locations. Our sites are actively tracking and reporting their energy usage each month and are looking at ways to achieve further reductions by installing capacitor banks, actively managing start-up and shut-down processes, and continuously tracking compressed air leakage.

To further reduce our energy consumption, we have also updated our Vibracoustic Machine Specification Book, which gives guidance for the introduction and operation of new equipment and machinery at our plants. The Machine Specification Book includes requirements related to machine start-up and shut-down procedures, energy use monitoring, and maintenance standards to optimize energy efficiency.

Renewable Energy

We are actively evaluating options to increase the share of renewable energy at all sites. Actions such as installation of solar panels and sourcing renewable energy via Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) have already been implemented.

Our plants in Spain, India, and Türkiye have already installed rooftop solar panels to help increase renewable energy usage and reduce CO2 emissions. Tracking software allows the plants to track the energy generated by the solar panels in real time.

Embracing Clean Energy Options

In regions where it is prevalent, we are evaluating and sourcing renewable energy via Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) with third-party energy providers. These PPAs enable Vibracoustic to utilize renewable electricity at a negotiated rate from renewable energy sources, such as solar parks or wind farms. We currently have PPAs in place at our sites in Germany and Spain with plans to negotiate agreements in Poland and other countries.

Sustainable & Renewable Materials

Developing our “Green Rubber Project”

Our goal is to increase the use of recycled materials in our products. We are driving initiatives to reduce the CO2 footprint of our products and create a more circular economy. The rubber industry is far from being circular and new recycling strategies must be developed to deal with large amounts of waste produced. Our material technologies team developed guidelines to source sustainable natural rubber as well as processes to utilize renewable, recycled, and non-hazardous substances for rubber compounds. From these innovations we were able to develop rubber compounds with at least 65% up to 75% sustainable content.

Sourcing of Sustainable Natural Rubber

Natural rubber from the rubber tree Hevea Brasiliensis has a lower CO2 footprint than synthetic rubber from fossil fuel based raw materials. However, to avoid environmental harm and ensure fair working conditions, the rubber’s origin must be closely monitored. To drive and support environmentally conscious and socially ethical sourcing practices, we invest in materials that are certified by PEFC (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification). This helps us to minimize the risk of deforestation.

Renewable, Recycled, and Non-Hazardous Compounds

Carbon black is usually made from fossil fuels like crude oil or natural gas. Instead, we can obtain it from used tires, thus reducing waste. We can also use renewable plasticizers, which lowers the carbon footprint. Furthermore, we are eliminating hazardous substances in the development of green rubber compounds, which also improves working conditions for our employees.

Biotechnical Recycling of Natural Rubber Waste

BioReNa is a biotechnological way of breaking down vulcanized rubber waste, functionalize it and then reuse it in rubber compounds. By reusing our own rubber waste, we can reduce the carbon footprint of new products while also reducing the waste generated by our production processes. How it works? Vulcanized rubber waste is shredded and treated with enzymes, converting it into reusable materials via functionalization of the rubber surface, thus contributing towards a circular economy.

Growing a Green Supply Base

Sustainable Sourcing

We are committed to growing a supply base that is in alignment with our environmental and social goals when it comes to sustainability. We already screen our supply base when it comes to potential risks and violations of social aspects, as we seek to take responsibility for sustainable sourcing. In terms of environmental topics, we place a high focus on the carbon footprint of our products and identify green alternatives for the materials we source. As a first step, we aim to increase awareness of sustainability topics in our supply base and to evaluate our suppliers on environmental and social aspects. Subsequently, we will set targets for our supply base in terms of the use of green energy, lowering CO2 emissions, and availability of green materials which means increased recycling content rates and low carbon footprint materials. Sustainable sourcing is essential, and we are aware of the importance and the impact our supply chains have on the environment. Thus, ESG is anchored in our sourcing strategy, our supplier assessment, and supplier evaluations.

Global Platform for Sustainable Natural Rubber

Vibracoustic is a member of the Global Platform for Sustainable Natural Rubber (GPSNR). This platform is an international organization with a mission to lead improvements in the socioeconomic and environmental performance of the natural rubber value chain. As a member, Vibracoustic has committed to the eight GPSNR policy frameworks which include legal compliance, supporting community livelihoods and healthy, functioning ecosystems as well as respecting all human rights.

Read more in our GPSNR commitment

Respect for Human Rights and the Environment

Respect for human rights and the environment are key elements of our Corporate Values, shaping our policies and behaviors. We are taking actions to ensure that our suppliers are also committed to these values, are undertaking similar initiatives, and are operating in a responsible way, demonstrating trust, tolerance, and fairness. Furthermore, we actively reject all forms of child labor, forced labor, human trafficking, and discrimination – within our own organization and our business partners.

Read more in our Policy Statement