Novo Nordisk announced (30 April 2019) that it will achieve its target to use only renewable electricity in its global production facilities by 2020. The announcement follows a new investment in a 672-acre solar panel installation, roughly the size of 500 football fields, in North Carolina, US, which will provide power to Novo Nordisk’s entire US operations from early 2020. Novo Nordisk is the first pharmaceutical company in RE100 to use only renewable electricity in production. RE100 is a collaborative, global initiative of businesses committed to using 100% renewable electricity.
Novo Nordisk furthermore announced a new target of achieving zero CO2emissions from all operations and transport by 2030. The goal is part of a new and ambitious ‘Circular for Zero’ environmental strategy with the ultimate aim of making Novo Nordisk a company that has zero environmental impact. The strategy will see Novo Nordisk take steps to minimise consumption and turn waste into resources, design and produce products so that they can be recovered and re-used and collaborate with suppliers to embed circularity in its supply chain.
“More than 29 million people use our medicines and from early next year, they can do so knowing that they’re produced using only renewable electricity,” said Lars Fruergaard Jørgensen, president and CEO. “By committing to achieve zero emissions across our operations and transport by 2030 and by applying a circular mindset across our entire business, we are working towards a day when we will be able to say that Novo Nordisk is a company with zero environmental impact.”
In addition to the zero emissions target, the Circular for Zero strategy commits the company to a significant shift towards circular thinking within three focus areas:
1. Circular company:Novo Nordisk will continue to reduce the environmental footprint of its production by working towards the elimination of waste sent to landfill and zero loss of water, energy and resources.
2. Circular supply: Novo Nordisk will reduce environmental impact across its supply chain by collaborating with suppliers to encourage circular business practices and by increasing procurement of recycled and carbon-neutral materials and resources.
3. Circular products: Novo Nordisk will upgrade existing products and design new products based on circular principles and work towards a sustainable solution for the reuse and recycling of products.
To help achieve its new ambitious target and to accelerate the adoption of circular thinking across the business, Novo Nordisk will partner with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, which has a mission to accelerate the transition to a circular economy.
Joe Murphy, CE100 Lead at Ellen MacArthur Foundation, said, “We are happy that Novo Nordisk has become the first pharmaceutical company to join CE100, which is the world’s leading circular economy network. Novo Nordisk brings a track record of delivering on their commitments, having already shifted to 100% renewable power within its production. With its 10-year ambition to implement circularity across the company, Novo Nordisk now belongs to a select group of leading organisations who are breaking new ground on the transition to a circular economy.”