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Lenzing Taking Next Steps in Sustainability Mission, From Raw Materials to Production

The Lenzing Group said it is on track with the sustainability targets it established in 2017 and has committed more than 100 million euros ($112.6 million) toward sustainable production technology by 2022.

The cellulosic fiber manufacturer, in releasing its 2018 Sustainability Report on Monday, said it has achieved a 29 percent reduction in sulfur emissions from viscose production and has signed the Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action that calls for a reduction in aggregate greenhouse gas emissions of 30 percent by 2030.

“Our corporate strategy sCore TEN is based on sustainability as a value, as the driver of our business and as a stimulus for innovations,” Stefan Doboczky, CEO of the Lenzing Group, said in the report. “This is evident in our investments in research and development and in developing resource-efficient processes, which result in technological and product innovations and numerous awards and certificates.”

He cited the development of Lenzing Web Technology, a sustainable nonwoven web formation process that begins with dissolving wood pulp and creates a nonwoven fabric consisting entirely of continuous lyocell filament, for which 25 patents have been applied, including a self-binding mechanism that joins the filaments during nonwoven formation.

Doboczky also noted the introduction of Tencel Luxe lyocell filaments that has “opened the door to sustainability for the world of Haute Couture.” He said, “The demand for this ‘silk from wood’ is very high, which is why we decided in 2018 to build another production line for Tencel Luxe filaments in Lenzing.”

The company’s Tencel lyocell fiber with Refribra technology, introduced in 2016, has become regarded as a “groundbreaking circular economy concept,” he said, while “demand is also strong for the completely traceable Lenzing Ecovero viscose fibers.”

To improve transparency, Lenzing will implement the Higg Facility Environmental Module at all sites this year. Lenzing created an implementation plan last year; production sites were informed and a Higg readiness program in cooperation with an external partner is scheduled for early 2019.

Lenzing also implemented a Global Supplier Code of Conduct last year. In order to do business with Lenzing, suppliers must ensure that their organization is set up in compliance with this code. The Global Supplier Code of Conduct outlines Lenzing’s expectations for supplier conduct with regard to health and safety at work, labor and human rights, environmental protection, ethics and management practices.

Taking a broader view, as a member of the World Economic Forum’s Alliance of CEO Climate Leaders, Doboczky signed the WEF’s open letter to world government leaders urging greater collaboration to accelerate outcomes against climate change.

“The Lenzing Group sees its pioneering role in the textile and nonwovens industries as an opportunity to contribute to the achievement of sustainable development goals,” Robert van de Kerkhof, chief commercial officer at Lenzing, said.

The current Tencel Earth Month Campaign, “From Trees, For Trees,” is a brand collaboration supporting the replanting of trees in the California forests recently devastated by last year’s wildfires. This month, the Tencel brand invites the public to get involved in helping them donate trees by liking and sharing Earth Month-related posts on their branded Instagram channel, as well as their retail partner’s Instagram channels. Tencel has partnered with BN3TH, Blu Salt, Triarchy Denim, Boyish Jeans, Bearaby, Hoot and Malouf for the campaign.

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