Coats aims to source renewable energy wherever that is feasible and is looking to expand its renewable energy generation which has grown from virtually zero to 28% in the last six years. There is already solar generation capacity at its Patrick Yarn Mill site in North Carolina, US and at Ambas, Southern India, which also has a biomass-based steam boiler.
“The risks associated with climate change continue to grow and the window of opportunity for reducing damaging global warming is closing. While we have considered aspects of climate change risk discretely, we now regard climate change as a unitary Emerging Risk which is reviewed at Board level. We are also looking closely at how we can report progress transparently and in line with the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate Related Financial Disclosures, Addressing energy consumption and the sources of energy used in our business are therefore very high priorities for us.
Having done a lot in terms of reducing energy use in prior years we need now to focus on real-time optimisation of demand and will be running pilot programmes for this in 2020. We have made significant progress in 2019 on renewable energy, with a new onsite solar array in Vietnam and negotiations underway in other locations. We have been progressively transitioning off coal as a fuel source, and this was completed during 2019.
While climate change is a major driver for our energy strategy, it is also very important in terms of cost management as energy is a major cost driver in our processes. Clearly reducing energy consumption generates a direct benefit, and we have also found, so far, that transitioning to renewable energy can be done without a negative cost impact.”
Kevin Finn President, Business Operations