An environmentally-friendly wood adhesive will play a key part in the company’s plans, Lena Pripp-Kovac, the sustainability manager at Inter Ikea, said.
“The glue is something that we did not realize had such a big impact. It was interesting to break down our climate goals and see how different areas affect what we internally refer to as our climate budget,” Pripp-Kovac said.
The renewable adhesive for wood-based products that Ikea will use in place of its current fossil fuels-based glue is expected to account for a six percent cut in production emissions.
With materials and manufacturing making up more than half of Ikea’s total climate footprint, the Swedish company has developed a number of initiatives to reduce emissions in its own factories and those of its suppliers.
Ikea has a goal of having all of its products produced by 100 percent renewable energy by 2030 wherever possible. It plans to actively phase out coal and oil-based fuels from its textile suppliers in India, Indonesia, Pakistan and Turkey.
“This is about investing in renewable and recyclable materials while also phasing out fossil fuel-based materials. We are also looking at the electricity supply of the production chain as well,” Pripp-Kovac said.
The company said that it is also looking at ways to reduce the climate footprint its products will have once they enter people’s homes. Pripp-Kovac pointed to its current use of LED lights and said that Ikea would announce new plans for its lights in the near future.
Ikea’s overall goal of cutting emissions by 80 percent was praised by the Swedish Society for Nature Conservation (Naturskyddsföreningen).
“Generally speaking, I think it is positive that such a large player in the global arena is coming out with a really ambitious goal,” spokeswoman Johanna Sandahl said. “If other companies of this size, or even smaller ones for that matter, would do the same I think it would really speed up a conversion that truly needs to pick up speed.”
Through its cooperation with suppliers, Ikea believes that the company's climate goals could have a snowball effect. The company said that Ikea accounts for 25 to 30 percent of some suppliers’ business and because those suppliers don’t have separate production units for Ikea alone, the Swedish firm’s goals could force the suppliers to change their entire production.
“If we can help create an overall change in the supply chain, we help to create greater moves than just within our own climate impact. That’s why we are setting goals that we can not easily solve on our own,” Pripp-Kovac said.
Lena Pripp-Kovac, hållbarhetschef för Inter Ikea, och koncernchef Torbjörn Lööf i samband med Democratic Design Days i Älmhult i somras. Ikeas mål är att senast 2030 minska klimatutsläppen från produktionen med totalt 80 procent jämfört med 2016. Arkivbild.