Belu

ENVIRONMENT
FIRST

ENVIRONMENT
FIRST

Belu is a values-led business. So, it’s the how we approach business, as well as what we deliver that differentiates us. The first of our values is to think environment-first, always. As a small central team of eight people, we work with like-minded organisations and partners, continually pushing for incremental and step change improvement in our carbon footprint.

In April 2017, we were delighted to have our approach and results recognised when we received The Queens Award for Enterprise, Sustainable Development

Carbon
footprint

Carbon
footprint

A carbon footprint is the measure of greenhouse gas emissions caused by an activity. It can be calculated for a product, service, person or even a country, and is used to understand the impact that human activity is having on the earth’s climate. The standard unit of measurement for a carbon footprint is carbon dioxide equivalents (CO2e).

Our 2017 carbon footprint

We take full responsibility for our products from generation of raw materials to end of life. Being aware of the footprint of everything we use and do means we continually focus on minimising the environmental impact of every aspect of our business. It’s a continuous challenge to ensure we are balancing every decision on ethics and overall planetary cost, and therefore essential that we measure our business through a triple bottom line of people, planet and profit.

Therefore, the first business performance indicator that we report is our CO2 emissions per litre produced. Our footprint is independently measured and reported in detail by global experts Anthesis.

The overall carbon footprint for all our products, office and people movements in 2018 totalled 6,023 tonnes of CO2e (carbon dioxide equivalent), a 5.4% increase on last year’s total of 5,712 tonnes of CO2e. An expected increase for a growing business delivering +25% growth in net profit in the year.

We remain the first and only water brand to have achieved the independent British Standard Institute’s carbon neutrality standard, PAS 2060.

Annual Belu carbon footprint per litre

Ethical glass

Ethical glass

Our iconic clear glass bottle range is made using Ethical Glass, an initiative that Belu led with supply chain partners to bring a new lightweight bottle to market. Every bottle also generates a royalty that’s given to our partner, WaterAid. Using smart design and collaboration right through the supply chain, our bottles are the lightest Still and Sparkling water bottles available on the market. Better yet, they are made in the UK using the highest recycled glass content in the formation of the bottle we can find available. In 2017 this was 40%.

Overall, our beautiful glass bottle is 17% lighter and has a 17% improved footprint than our previous Belu glass bottle.

Ethical Glass is available in 330ml and 750ml.

USING
RECYCLED
PLASTIC

USING
RECYCLED
PLASTIC

From 2012, our plastic bottle range has been made with at least 50% recycled plastic, leading the UK bottled water market.

Our position on supplying plastic bottles recognises that until a viable and sustainable alternative option exists (and we will continue to invest here), there will be occasions where plastic product is still required. We will therefore continue to strive to increase the recycled content of our bottles and mainly use recycled content from used plastic bottles.*

We continue to encourage all customers and potential customers to ‘buy less’, but when they do buy water, to choose Belu. A lightweight, crushable bottle using at least 50% recycled material, and 100% recyclable.

* The priority is to create high quality food grade recycled plastic, and although the majority of resources we use are used bottles, there are some other used plastic items that also hit the grade we are looking for.

Read more in our book of #BeluWaterStories

GREEN GLASS

GREEN GLASS

Green glass can increase recycled content up to 80%

We love green glass and its credentials from a recycled content perspective. In 2017, we supplied 861,331 of green bottles to hotels and restaurants across the UK. However, we have come across great difficulty to get kilns in the UK to make this greener glass, so for now we are limited to supplying this in a 500ml format only. Our goal for 2018 is to increase availability of this product line.

CARBON
REDUCTION
PROJECTS

CARBON
REDUCTION
PROJECTS

Carbon emissions we haven’t been able to remove from our footprint, we offset. In addition, we commit to forward plans of emission reductions to achieve PAS 2060, the only independent standard of carbon neutrality in the UK, awarded by the British Standard Institution, the UK’s national standards body.

During 2018, working with our carbon partners South Pole and EcoAct, we offset our remaining emissions through funding three carbon reduction projects in Vietnam, Kenya and Thailand:

Through South Pole, the Song Ong project generates energy from the flow of the river to help reduce rolling blackouts and grid crashes in Southern Vietnam. Beyond providing an alternative to the burning of fossil fuels, the project has also contributed directly to the improvement of existing low-quality infrastructure systems with the construction of 11km of new road. Furthermore, 55 permanent jobs have been created for project operation, boosting local economies with new income streams.

The Chorchaiwat project, also through South Pole, mitigates the greenhouse gas emissions from a tapioca starch factory in Thailand by capturing biogas from wastewater and using it to replace heavy fuel oil in boilers. Not only does the project reduce methane emissions, but it also decreases fuel consumption of the plant by 80%. Local communities benefit from improved air and water quality. In addition, carbon credit revenues have funded social and educational activities, and an ambulance for the local emergency service, improving the wellbeing of surrounding communities.

We’ve partnered with EcoAct to benefit families living in rural areas of Kenya’s Rift Valley, Nyanza and Western Province through the Paradigm Water Purification project. 18,500 water purification dispensers have been distributed through this project, delivering safer water to 2.4 million people.