HANOVER, Germany — Continental A.G.'s tire business is pledging to achieve 100% carbon-neutrality along its entire value chain by 2050 at the latest, the company said June 5, marking World Environment Day.
"We understand sustainable business as our responsibility and are convinced that the contribution of each individual is important to enable Continental to be the most progressive tire company in terms of environmental and social responsibility by 2030," Claus Petschick, head of sustainability of Conti's tires business area.
Continental has acknowledged World Environment Day — initiated by the United Nations in 1972 — since 2013 with its own "Energy & Environment Days" initiative that encourages "mindful awareness" of environmental topics at all tire locations worldwide.
The internal initiative focuses on energy efficiency, water conservation and the efficient use of natural resources to prevent waste.
"The Energy & Environment Days are an important internal platform for us to highlight and honor our strategic initiatives, achievements, and the personal contribution we make to achieving our environmental goals local," Mr. Petschick said.
Conti claims its tire business consumes 55% less water and 17% less energy than the industry average per metric ton of tires produced. By 2030, the aim is to achieve additional savings of 20% in each case.
In 2021, Conti is focusing on its activities in energy-efficient heating and cooling and efforts to draw attention to the effects of climate change.
As such, Conti notes that it's using solar-energy installations at tire plants in Brazil, China, Germany, India, South Africa and Thailand for a "significant" portion of the electricity consumed at those plants
Most recently, Conti installed solar panels earlier this year at its plant in Rayong, Thailand, capable of generating 4.2 megawatts of power. Since then, carbon emissions there have been reduced by 319 metric tons, Conti claims.
Similarly, a solar installation at the company's plant in Hefei, China, was expanded in June 2020 and is generating roughly 13 million kilowatt hours of green energy annually, which corresponds to a reduction in carbon emissions of 12,000 tons a year.