Earth911 Podcast: Crown Holding’s Jennifer Bogs on Making Aluminum More Sustainable
How can we make one of the most recycled materials more sustainable? Meet Jennifer Bogs, director of global sustainability at Crown Holdings, Inc., one of the largest aluminum can manufacturers worldwide at $12.9 billion in annual sales. The aluminum industry famously claims that 75% of all aluminum ever produced is still in use today; it’s a highly recyclable material. Reusing 1 ton of aluminum reduces by 8 tons the need to mine raw bauxite, the ore aluminum is made of, and saves 14,000 kWh of energy, enough electricity to power one U.S. home for an entire year. But the Environmental Protection Agency’s last aluminum recycling statistics, from 2018, show that only 50.4% of drink cans distributed in the U.S. were recycled. And across all uses of aluminum, only 34.9% of the material is recycled. Recycling results in the United States do not compare favorably with Europe, where recycling rates are consistently above 70%, or China and Brazil, which reported they recovered 99.5% and 96.5% of aluminum beverage cans, respectively.
Crown has announced carbon reduction and environmental goals, known as the Twentyby30 Goals. The company has reduced Scope 1 and 2 carbon emissions, those directly and indirectly associated with its manufacturing activities, by 12% since 2019 while growing production by 8 billion cans — its carbon intensity is decreasing. However, Crown’s Scope 3 emissions rose by 25%. Like many companies, Scope 3 is where much of Crown’s opportunity to improve lives in the coming years. The company also recently reported that it has increased the use of renewable energy to 34% on the path to 75% renewable use by 2030 and has reduced volatile organic compound emissions by 6% since 2019. The company’s internal efforts focus on activating and educating employees in dozens of manufacturing and office locations around the globe to make business decisions based on environmental impacts.
You can learn more about Crown at www.crowncork.com. The mention of cork in the URL reflects its legacy as Crown Cork & Seal Company, founded in 1892.