Saint-Gobain Gyproc completes LCA
Wednesday, 14 Aug 2013
Local manufacturer Saint-Gobain Gyproc, the interior building solutions group, has completed a critical life cycle assessment (LCA) on its products.
This LCA methodology has been developed as a benchmark for best group practice, an evaluation tool that measures the environmental impact of a product in every stage of its life cycle, from raw material stage through five stages to the end of its life cycle.
At raw material stage, Saint-Gobain Gyproc explores ways to protect and sustain the environment. They are involved in key conservation projects that aim to make a contribution to the natural environment that sustains their business. "Life Cycle Assessments enable us to eco-innovate and design new products that are planet-friendly and responsible," explains Evan Lockhart Barker, marketing manager at Saint-Gobain Gyproc.
Reducing energy consumption
"Our aim was to reduce our total energy consumption by 6% at the end of 2012, measured from 2010. To achieve this, world-class manufacturing principles were implemented in four of our five manufacturing sites with the highest total energy usage. By recycling solid waste at our Brakpan manufacturing plant, we have also reduced our contribution to landfills by 10%," adds Lockhart Barker. In addition, 52% of the energy used in the manufacturing process of products comes from natural gas, which is a third of the carbon footprint of electricity.
Saint-Gobain Gyproc is always researching better ways to bring their products closer to their customers. When products are transported to their extensive network of distribution centres, the impact of the journey on the environment is evaluated, with specific consideration of factors including energy consumption and air pollution. This has led to a 20% drop in fuel consumption, with trucks using only 0.013 litres of fuel per ton of boards transported.
Build and think differently
Saint-Gobain Gyproc is a founding member of the Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA), an independent non-profit, membership based organisation and the official certification body of buildings under the Green Star SA Environmental Rating System. All products are installed and used to build smartly and differently, with superior results.
"We are very aware of the impact of our products on the planet, and are committed to a responsible product destruction process. Our products are designed to create safe, healthy urban habitats that enable comfortable living. We strive towards international standards of sustainability, exploring more and more ways to build differently by thinking differently," explains Lockhart Barker.