Written by Jonny Williamson
The Scottish Leather Group, the largest bovine leather manufacturer in the UK, operates three sites across western Scotland and provides custom leather for industries such as furniture, marine, automotive and aviation.
The company has identified and realised several process and building related energy efficiency measures resulting in an annual reduction in CO2 emissions of more than 3,000 tonnes. The equivalent of a 46 percent decrease in CO2 has saved the company almost £900,000, even though production has continued to rise.
Scottish Leather’s commitment to energy efficiency was exemplified in its creation of a Thermal Energy Plant at the company’s Bridge of Weir site, the main area of its operations. The plant takes waste created by the leather production process and converts it into fuel which, in turn, generates heat which is then reused during production.
+MORE FROM MANUFACTURING DIGITAL
- General Motor's investment boosts UK car manufacturing
- Manufacturers need more government support says survey
- Reliable Manufacturing enhance safety and reliability
Manager of Carbon Trust Scotland, Paul Wedgwood, commented:
“The commitment to investment in their thermal energy plant has been visionary. Meanwhile, they continue to deliver through a range of energy management projects and practices across the business.”
The Carbon Trust particularly commended the company on its ambition, innovation and exemplary environmental performance.
The Scottish Leather Group consists of Andrew Muirhead and Son, Bridge of Weir Leather Company, WJ and W Lang, and NCT Leather, with SLG Technology playing a supporting role.
Director at SLG Technology, Dr. Warren Brown, said:
“The world leather industry’s first Thermal Energy Plant opened at our Bridge of Weir site in 2010. It shows how we stand out as an innovator and is enabling us to product leather sustainably and market our unique brand of low-carbon leather to customers such as Aston Martin and Jaguar Land Rover.”
Other companies in the running for the award included Fife Joinery Manufacturing, whose recent installation of a biomass boiler and an intelligent chip extraction system had reduced its carbon footprint by 57 percent, and Ardagh, a glass manufacturer who has implemented variable speed drives into its production processes and been at the forefront of innovation within the glass containers industry.