Sustainable production

The ROCKWOOL Group scores high in the Carbon Disclosure ratings

Water for life

Water is a scarce resource in many parts of the world, so it is important to use as little as possible. For example, many factories collect and use rain water in order to limit the usage of potable water. ROCKWOOL and Rockfon have improved water efficiency by 10% from 2005 to 2009.

Reducing carbon emissions

According to an externally verified assessment, the total portfolio of ROCKWOOL products (including Rockfon products) sold in 2009 saved 4 billion tonnes of CO2 – equivalent to the CO2 emissions of India, Russia and Germany combined.

Over its lifetime, ROCKWOOL insulation saves so much energy in buildings and industrial processes worldwide that the energy and emissions used to make it are recouped several times over. For example, a 250mm ROCKWOOL loft insulation product in Denmark saves more than 100 times the primary energy and CO2 needed for its manufacture, transport and disposal. The energy and CO2 balances become positive only five months and four months respectively, after installation in the building.

Energitically saving energy

The ROCKWOOL Group is continuously improving the energy efficiency of its factories. For instance, five old production lines have been replaced with four highly efficient upgrades, saving € 3.4 million annually in energy costs. These measures also reduce CO2 emissions.

To improve the factories’ environmental performance even further and minimise risks, the ROCKWOOL Group has developed environmental standards that specify safety procedures, responsibility and measuring methods. A 50% reduction of energy use and emissions per insulation unit is often realised when newly acquired factories are modernised and brought up to ROCKWOOL’s environmental standards.

Cleaning up waste

Stone wool is produced by mixing diabase rock and recycled material with foundry coke. The mixture is poured into a vertical furnace, where it melts at 1500°C. The melt flows over high-speed spinning wheels, where a binder is added to the material. A horizontal airflow blows at a speed of 170 m/s, turning the magma into fine intertwined fibres. When cooled the stone wool has a density approximately 100 times lower than the original rock.

At this heat level, organic waste is burned cleanly to produce energy, reducing factory consumption of fossil fuels.

A by-product of the melting process is pig iron. The metal is reused in the steel industry. The estimated output is 97% stone wool and 3% metal.

    In 2011, the globally recognised Carbon Disclosure Project rewarded ROCKWOOL a disclosure rating of 86 points. This places the ROCKWOOL Group high in the Carbon Disclosure ratings.
    1 cubic metre of stone corresponds to 2,200 square metres of 15 mm ceiling tiles, which is enough ceiling to cover eight tennis courts..

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