Swisspearl's sustainability focus - Swisspearl
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Where does sustainability start?

Learn what three Swisspearl colleagues are doing to promote sustainability within their personal lives and the company.

Discover their stories

Our own focus on sustainability

Swisspearl’s primary purpose is to contribute to creating inspiring, healthy and secure settings for people’s lives. We wish to do this without having any unnecessary impact on the planet. We go out of our way to operate a responsible business with particular focus on:

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Climate and environment
Our main focus in our own operations and purchased electricity is on improving energy efficiency and replacing fossil energy with alternative green sources.
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Circularity
The concept of the circular economy is a strong facet of sustainable development. We aim to contribute to the evolution of the circular economy model for the fibre-cement industry.
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Social Responsibility
Within this pillar we work on social topics further enhancing the Swisspearl employee experience.
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Governance
Within this pillar we focus on further strengthening the common Swisspearl
way to manage, behave and operate.
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Torvbråten Skole, Asker, Norway,Nordic Swan Ecolabel
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How we take care of the climate and environment

We are careful with our raw materials – and minimize waste in production

  • We work according to LEAN methods and make sure that best practice is shared with all factories so that we can minimize waste and recycle as much as possible in production. 
  • We work every day to develop our products and processes so that they have less of an impact on the climate and environment, whilst ensuring that the fibre cement retains its most important properties. 
  • We consume a lot of water, but have cut our reliance on drinking water; today we fetch the majority of our water from local rivers and lakes.  
  • All our factories operate under ISO 9001 quality management systems. 

We take care of the environment 

  • We work systematically and meticulously with a full range of environmental matters. The majority of our factories are ISO 14001 certified, and they all comply with local legislation and environmental regulations.  
  • Our factories do not leak dust or suffer problems with other emissions. Cement and other dry materials are stored and moved around in closed systems. Cutting and other machining processes are also carried out in closed systems. 
  • We use most of our water again and again, such that the amount of wastewater is extremely limited – and in some factories zero. Any remaining effluent from our manufacturing processes is cleaned in waste water treatment plants to fullfill requirements allowing discharge back to nature. 
  • The cellulose that Swisspearl uses for its products is from sustainably managed forests with certified chain of custody. 
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Swisspearl plant, Lohja, Finland
Did you know?

At our factory in Finland, we have had production for 20 years that does not discharge any effluent whatsoever. All water is managed in closed processes, with the only wastewater coming from the canteen and changing rooms for personnel. 

We save energy and work hard to reduce our carbon footprint.

  • We make improvements to buildings, machines and processes on an ongoing basis in a bid to save energy and reduce our carbon footprint 
  • Our primary focus is on reducing the use of fossil energy and replacing this with energy from renewable sources. 
  • Swisspearl works to increase the share of renewable electricity 
  • At some factories we have experimented with electricity from solar cells on the factory roof, and we are looking to considerably develop this approach 
  • Our factories are located close to the raw materials we use, thus cutting down on transport 
  • Whenever possible, we utilise the European railway network to transport finished goods to our market warehouses. 
  • We work closely with suppliers and researchers on developing new products and finding raw materials with a lower carbon footprint. 

We ensure that our products have a long life.

  • It is best for both the climate and the environment if we establish durable buildings that can be adapted to future needs. We therefore ensure that our products are of high quality, such that they have a long lifetime and require minimal maintenance. 
  • All our factories operate under ISO 9001 quality management systems.  
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Did you know?

Every week a 600-metre-long Swisspearl train runs from our factories in Central Europe up to Vojens in Denmark. Each delivery is equivalent to 60 trucks being taken off Europe’s roads.

How we work with circularity

We need to get used to the idea of seeing dilapidated buildings as material banks full of building materials that can be reused or recycled. In other words, to see waste as a raw material. For this reason, all of Swisspearl’s products are designed with circularity in mind – to be able to be used again and again. Either in their original form – or in trimmed or crushed variants as new raw materials. 

We also exploit this property at our factories, where we collect all waste. A large part of this waste can be reused in our own production, and we continue to experiment in order to increase the proportion used. 

Fibre cement produced today does not contain either harmful chemicals, surface treatments or other problematic substances. Looking at the possibilities offered by recycling fibre cement in the future is therefore a logical step to take – so we do just that. Our development department is working flat out to discover new avenues in what we call from waste to asset.  

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Glavsfjordens Förskola, Årsta, Sweden
How we look after our people – and yours

Swisspearl’s products are healthy and safe to use – in production, at the building site and in the finished building.  

  •  We comply with all local regulations related to the working environment 
  •  All our factories work in accordance with qualified working environment programmes in order to safeguard the health and safety of our employees. The majority are ISO 45001 certified and provide the basis for sharing best practice 
  •  We have comprehensive instructions for craftsmen as an aid to safe and correct installation of our products. In the case of major tasks, we are happy to come out to provide instruction in proper handling of the products 
  •  For products that are typically handled in liquid form, we have related safety documentation 
  •  Finally, all our products for interior use have M1 certification, which means that they meet low product emission requirements. 
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Chloe on Madison, Seattle, USA
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Our responsibilities
How we operate a responsible business

When it comes to governance and business development, we see sustainability as a crucial indicator. We incorporate sustainability into all processes and are constantly developing our products to become even more climate-friendly and environmentally friendly. 

We gauge ourselves by means of international standards such as GHG, UNGC, SASB and UNSDG 
We recognize a number of international environmental standards and use them to frame and assess our impact on the world and to gauge the way we operate our business.  

We take responsibility for our carbon footprint – both our direct and indirect impact 
We calculate our carbon footprint on the basis of the Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Protocol and calculate our emissions in Scope 1, 2 and 3. We also measure our performance using a number of other environmental, climate and resource parameters. 

We look at sustainability in a broader sense  
We report on our own performance based on an ESG benchmark, which means that we incorporate environment, people and behaviour.  

We make demands on our suppliers and business partners 
As a responsible business, we want to be sure that our suppliers and business partners also operate sustainable businesses, as a result of which we carry out supplier screenings, audits and engage in various collaborations. 

We do what we say – and say what we do 
In our annual sustainability report we provide an account of our ambitions, directions and results with regard to sustainability. 

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Did you know ?

Swisspearl has its own whistle-blower scheme, whereby employees and business partners can provide anonymous accounts of nonconformities or rules that have not been complied with. In this way, we can rapidly deal with any such issues in the enterprise.