Carlsberg credits can recycling for exceeding emissions target

Carlsberg Group has announced a 16% reduction in carbon emissions since 2015 – exceeding target by 1%. The global brewery group credits a number of measures across its value chain for the reduction – including an increase in metal packaging recycling in Central and Eastern Europe.

Carlsberg Group identified a number of main drivers that enabled them to cut carbon emissions, including lower-carbon solutions in malting processes, elimination of coal at breweries, and lower-carbon packaging. 

The group revealed an 8% reduction in packaging emissions – crediting success to cuts in carbon intensity across all packaging types and improved recycling rates for PET bottles and aluminium cans. 

The group acknowledged that progress had been counteracted by the increased presence of cans in the packaging mix resulting in a reduced share for less carbon intensive reusable glass bottles. 

Reporting on performance in Central and Eastern Europe, Carlsberg revealed emissions were reduced by 12% – aided by notable improvements in the collection and recycling of packaging. In Lithuania, for example, the setup of a new deposit return scheme in 2016 enabled recycling rates to improve from below 50% to above 90% by the end of 2022.

Jacob Aarup-Andersen, CEO of Carlsberg Group, says: “I am very pleased to see that Carlsberg is delivering on its commitments to cut carbon emissions. As the incoming CEO my ambition is to drive progress and with these solid results at the 2022 milestone, we are starting with a strong foot forward as we continue the decarbonisation journey towards 2030 and 2040.

“We still have a long way to go, especially in areas such as agriculture and packaging – within which we have committed to specific targets more recently. Delivering on these new targets is not going to be easy, but our success thus far gives me great confidence in our ability to follow through with concrete actions and results.”

Carlsberg Group has achieved the 16% reduction in relative value chain emissions per hectolitre of beer produced (kg CO2e/hl) after finalising the new assessment which was conducted in partnership with the independent consultancy Carbon Trust.

The Group’s ZERO Carbon Footprint ambition is an area of focus in Carlsberg Group’s Together Towards ZERO and Beyond programme. Global targets are set to drive down carbon emissions across the value chain to achieve net zero by 2040. As it works towards this milestone, the Group is striving for zero carbon emissions at its breweries and for all renewable electricity to come from new assets by 2030.

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