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Refrigeration company achieves climate neutrality

Efficient Energy GmbH is defining new sustainability standards in the refrigeration industry. The company has calculated and offset its carbon footprint and taken steps to reduce its emissions. It intends to continue actively pursuing these measures in the coming years.

Refrigeration and air-conditioning units are a key driver of global warming, accounting for some eight percent of global CO2 emissions. It is therefore not only important for companies to switch to technologies using natural refrigerants without global warming potential, but also – and all the more important – for them to take responsibility for their own corporate emissions.

Efficient Energy has already succeeded in becoming one of the first refrigeration-industry enterprises to achieve climate neutrality. In the summer of 2020, chief executive Georg Dietrich set a good example by calculating his own personal carbon footprint and offsetting it, thereby becoming climate neutral himself. Having joined the 'Leaders for Climate Action' community, the next logical step for Mr Dietrich was therefore to commit his company as well to this 'Green Pledge' as well.

“As a cleantech pioneer, sustainability is coded in our DNA. Climate neutrality is a key part of this. Our refrigeration technology lets water be used as a refrigerant, helping our customers significantly reduce their carbon footprint – to as little as net zero emissions. At the same time, however, we also see it as our responsibility to ensure our business activities generate as few emissions as necessary and to offset those which cannot be avoided,” explains Mr Dietrich.

In cooperation with Leaders for Climate Action and ClimatePartner, the refrigeration-technology maker calculated its corporate emissions, offset them and took measures to reduce them in future. The analysis identified energy consumption, mobility and IT infrastructure as the three largest sources of emissions. The company offset a total of around 393 metric tonnes of CO2 emissions for 2020 as part of a climate protection project. This corresponds to the annual CO2 sequestration of 31,520 trees. The climate protection project that the company is supporting promotes the construction of small-scale hydropower plants in Virunga National Park in Congo. By providing an alternative source of energy, it is possible to avoid the clearing of trees for the extraction of brown coal. These trees provide the natural habitat and protection for one third of all mountain gorillas still living in the wild. With this measure, Efficient Energy is therefore supporting an important development project which, additionally to climate protection, also contributes to a large number of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Two of the measures taken to reduce Efficient Energy’s carbon footprint are the switch to green electricity and its “Trains over Planes” business travel policy, which stipulates that rail must be the mode of transport used for domestic business travel. These two measures alone result in a 40 percent reduction in emissions on a like-for-like calculation basis. But that’s not the end of the story by a long way.

“We regard climate neutrality as an ongoing process in which we strive for continual self-improvement. We are already working on implementing further measures to reduce our carbon footprint and aim to achieve climate neutrality again in 2021,” says Efficient Energy’s climate protection officer, Dominik Bachschneider.

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