Marine blind specialists Solarglide have announced their commitment to the United Nations climate scheme ‘UNFCCC Race to Zero’. This is a global campaign to rally leadership and support from businesses, cities, regions and investors for a healthy, resilient, zero carbon recovery that prevents future threats, creates decent jobs, and unlocks inclusive, sustainable growth.

This worldwide campaign will shift the focus to encourage businesses to become more sustainable. Newcastle-based Solarglide have announced ambitious goals to work towards being net zero by 2025 while the overall goal for all companies involved is to halve greenhouse gases before 2030 and to achieve net zero emissions by 2050

Paul Pringle, Managing Director of Solarglide, said: “We are striving towards being net zero and have set ourselves an ambitious target of three years to do this. We believe we have the capabilities and infrastructure to achieve this by making changes which include utilising electric vehicles and transitioning to biodegradable packaging.”

“We are proud to be involved in the UNFCCC Race to Zero, as a prestigious global campaign it will give us a platform and the incentive to be a part of an environmental revolution.” 

How are Solarglide becoming sustainable?

Solarglide are committed to making sure all packaging for their marine products will be 100% biodegradable. As their packaging had a very high proportion of plastic, and although it was made from recycled plastic, the product could still end up in landfill if not processed correctly. 

As an ISO 14000:2015 Environmental Management accredited company they have made the packing process more eco-friendly by using recyclable and biodegradable packaging. This includes using strong cardboard, treated wooden boxes, cardboard edging, biodegradable bubble wrap, paper tapes and paper document wallets. It has made a huge impact on the business, and has been cost-effective for all parties involved. 

Solarglide also partnered with Newcastle University to review their products to understand their carbon impacts for their clients. Having created an ‘Environmental and Sustainability’ policy for the business, Solarglide wants to integrate everyone into the process, this includes changing from diesel engines to electric motors in all their vehicles from October of this year. 

To get a better understanding of their carbon footprint, they are also investing in research to calculate the carbon footprint of each of their products.

Marine Sustainability…

The environmental impact of shipping includes greenhouse gas emissions, acoustic, and oil pollution. The International Maritime Organisation (IMO) estimates that carbon dioxide emissions from shipping were equal to 3.3% of the global human-made emissions in 2007 and it could have risen to 72 percent in 2020 if no action was taken.

The First Intersessional Meeting of the IMO Working Group on Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Ships took place in Oslo, Norway on 23–27 June 2008. It was tasked with developing the technical basis for the reduction mechanisms that may form part of a future IMO regime to control greenhouse gas emissions from international shipping, and a draft of the actual reduction mechanisms themselves, for further consideration by IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee.

It appears the focus has shifted from immediate pollution of the oceans to the shipping industry leading the way in preserving our oceans. The IMO has developed and adopted many rules and guidelines to protect the marine environment from any potential negative impact of shipping activities such as marine litter.