AMSTERDAM - The Dutch government has signed an agreement with AkzoNobel recognizing the company's latest contribution to meeting national sustainability targets resulting from investments at its chemicals complex in Rotterdam.
It is the third agreement AkzoNobel has signed under the "Energieakkoord," a pact between the Dutch government and over 40 public and private groups that aims to reduce energy consumption, increase the share of renewable energy and create jobs. Companies can sign bilateral agreements with the government to confirm the contribution they have made to the overall goal.
The latest agreement recognizes an investment in new "zero gap" technology, which increases the efficiency of the company's chlorine plant in Rotterdam. The annual energy saving is equivalent to the electricity consumption of 26,000 Dutch households. AkzoNobel also has agreements in place that recognize energy savings at its two other chemicals sites in the Netherlands, in Hengelo and Delfzijl.
Dutch Minister of Economic Affairs Henk Kamp commented, "To achieve a low-CO2 economy by 2050, initiatives leading to energy savings are of great importance. It's good to see how AkzoNobel is working on innovative solutions to use energy more efficiently. An initiative such as the zero-gap technology not only contributes to saving targets, but also improves the competitiveness of the companies by reducing energy costs, thus ensuring a stronger industry in the Netherlands."
The agreements at Hengelo and Delfzijl recognize the innovative use of waste heat. In Hengelo, the waste heat is supplied to the local heating system, while in Delfzijl, it is used for salt production. The three agreements are equivalent to a CO2 emissions reduction of 73,000 tons annually. This makes AkzoNobel the leading contributor to the Dutch Energy Agreement.
Knut Schwalenberg, CEO of AkzoNobel Netherlands, added, "New initiatives and partnerships are needed to make the next big step in the sustainability of the industry and economy in the Netherlands. We must seize these opportunities and constantly seek new forms of cooperation."
Schwalenburg went on to say that AkzoNobel's sustainability ambitions go beyond the Energy Agreement. "Currently, 40% of our global energy is renewable, and we aim to increase this to 45% by 2020."