Over the past few years, LAPP has also been expanding its product portfolio for solar and wind energy with products with the longest possible durability, robustness and extreme flexibility. Talking with TimesTech Buzz, Gary Bateman, Managing Director, LAPP India extensively talks about their offerings in the cable and connection technology domain, their stance towards sustainability and many more interesting insights in this below candid chat.
TimesTech: How is LAPP India setting the right example for the cable and connection technology industry in terms of environment-friendly initiatives?
Gary Bateman: At LAPP, we realise the responsibility we hold as individuals and as an organisation to protect the environment. Considering the current state of affairs, transitioning to environment-friendly options is no longer just a choice, it has become a necessity.
We support the United Nations in implementing Agenda 2030 by working according to the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which built the framework for sustainable economic, ecological, and social management. We observe pioneering guidelines at the European level, such as the EU Green Deal, material-related regulations such as REACH / RoHS, and support the objectives of the Paris Climate Agreement. Our cable and accessories programme includes halogen-free products which are safer options for people and the environment in case of fire incidents. They also offer protection from toxic reactions and benefits for recycling. All our products and packaging are asbestos and CFC-free.
Over the past few years, LAPP has also been expanding its product portfolio for solar and wind energy with products with the longest possible durability, robustness and extreme flexibility.
TimesTech: What potential do you envision for the solar sector in India?
Gary Bateman: We see this as a growing segment with huge potential. Renewable energy is increasingly being adopted with the environmental crisis affecting different parts of the world. This sector will see major shifts in the coming years especially in India, to keep up with the ambitious target to achieve 175 GW worth of renewable energy by the end of 2022, which will expand to 450 GW by 2030. It is the world’s largest expansion plan in renewable energy and the installed capacity has increased 226 per cent in the last five years.
LAPP has an exclusive range of products ranging from cables, connectors, and special accessories for the PV solar segment. We offer solutions for photovoltaic projects to simple rooftop installations and energy storage. We are working towards local manufacturing/sourcing of solar products for India to provide our customers with greater value. Recently, we partnered with CAHORS, a French multinational company specialised in energy distribution to complement our wide portfolio of solar cables with an exhaustive product range from CAHORS that includes plug-in connectors, branch connectors, panel connectors, module junction boxes, enclosures, combiner boxes, and crimping/cutting tools.
TimesTech: How does sustainable production contribute to the business’ growth? How does LAPP India ensure sustainability in their production processes?
Gary Bateman: Cooperative action is essential to drive change on a national and global level. Undoubtedly, sustainable goods are a growing market, but business growth is not defined by just profits alone. It is essential to have a shared purpose that will eventually drive greater employee satisfaction and competitive advantage for your business.
Keeping this in mind, we have set processes in place that ensure sustainability at every step. Our partner companies can dispose of old cables in an environmentally-safe method. We largely avoid stabilisers containing lead in our PVC cable and conductor production. Our production operations largely re-use cable production waste. All synthetic waste produced is re-used. We are also creating innovative solutions that replace potentially harmful material components in processes wherever possible.
Using the materiality matrix, we identify processes with the relevant environmental impact. They are then adapted in accordance with the project, particularly those with a high CO2 impact. We are committed to processing optimisation and integration of recycling concepts for plastics and copper directly in production or through close partnerships with recycling experts. We opt for sustainable packaging material and sustainable supplier management, which have proven to be effective tools in avoiding unnecessary production waste and enabling the safe disposal of hazardous waste.
TimesTech: How does LAPP India reduce electricity consumption and create sustainable spaces in the long run?
Gary Bateman: We have two state-of-the-art manufacturing plants in India-first one in Jigani, Bengaluru, and the second one in Pilukhedi, Bhopal. The Bengaluru plant can manufacture 550 metric tonnes/month, where ninety per cent of the plant’s power requirements are fulfilled by solar power, leading to a reduction in the carbon footprint of almost 1264 tonnes/year. Within the plant, employees’ transportation needs are met by electric vehicles. The Bhopal plant supports the retail, solar, infrastructure, building and OEM segments while having the lowest scrap rate and TCGP in the group. A 1-Megawatt solar power plant established on the premises meets the energy requirements of the plant.
TimesTech: What are the benefits of carbon neutrality and how essential is it in today’s time?
Gary Bateman: Considering the critical dangers faced by the environment today, carbon neutrality is extremely essential and an important step towards tackling the climate change crisis. Soon, climate-focused regulations will be mandatorily put in place for businesses, and it is only sensible to be prepared and begin the implementation voluntarily at the earliest. This approach will help mitigate possible regulation risks in the future, manage costs effectively and provide a sense of shared purpose among employees. Environmental concerns are also affecting the purchasing patterns of customers. Today, customers are increasingly showing a preference for environment-friendly brands, giving carbon-neutral brands a competitive advantage as compared to the other players in their industry.