June 15, 2020

Corporate

PORCELANOSA Group supports sustainable water management with its Eco Conscious programme

The multinational company promotes water saving and reuse with a Sustainable Development Plan that supports the conservation of biodiversity through diversified and green production.

Porcelanosa Group has launched Eco Conscious, a programme of green measures that seeks to redirect its business strategy towards a more sustainable production and consumption model. In addition to reducing energy consumption and implementing responsible waste management in its factories and offices, the multinational company has committed to optimising its sustainable water management with solutions that allow an equitable and supportive supply of natural resources.

What is sustainable water management?

Sustainable water management seeks to reduce the water footprint and promote the circular economy, promoting the marketing of more sustainable and long-lasting products. The water footprint (WF) measures the total volume of water used in manufacturing a product. This indicator shows the water resources used in a production process from its origin to the final consumer, and its results serve to redirect the use of water efficiently.

An indicator used by Porcelanosa Group in its actions implemented to save water and manufacture environmentally responsible products.

PORCELANOSA Group’s commitment to saving water

Water is an essential element in human life and its distribution plays a key role in meeting the 17 Sustainable Development Goals set by the UN in the 2030 Agenda. According to the UN itself, water distribution is not equal in all countries and by 2050, 25% of the world’s population is expected to suffer from freshwater scarcity and withdrawal. This would negatively affect developing countries, where the lack of water resources could increase poverty and hunger.

The Porcelanosa water network is fully channelled

To combat this situation and promote a fairer and more sustainable planet, Porcelanosa Group has increased its R&D&I investments to implement eco-efficient solutions that improve sustainable water management. One of these solutions is the installation of water supply and treatment systems, as is the case in the Porcelanosa, Venis and Gamadecor facilities. 

These companies have chosen to convert wastewater into clean water and use it in other production processes to comply with Zero Waste. “The Porcelanosa water network is fully channelled and has a series of control points that allow us to determine consumption flows and analyse usage trends. This aspect is key to maintaining the self-imposed improvement targets, related to the decrease in consumption of natural resources and the minimisation of the environmental impact“, said representatives from the firm.

Venis has also replaced its five tile grinding lines to stop consuming well water. We must also mention the enamels treatment plant, which allows it to reuse industrial water in the atomiser or when cleaning its facilities. 

A similar position to that adopted by Gamadecor, which has established sustainable production systems using its own water reservoirs that allow for greater optimisation of natural resources. “Each of our facilities has its own reservoir that recycles the water internally until it is diluted. All the reservoirs are emptied into a final physical-chemical purification system with which we separate the sludge by decantation, and with which we purify the water until it goes to a municipal collector. Every quarter, AIDIMME collects a sample of the wastewater at the collector to ensure the restrictions are being complied with for the different wastewater parameters, in accordance with municipal regulations. In addition, every four years, an analysis is carried out and form MD-301 is presented to the relevant authority (EPSAR), with which the correction coefficient to be applied at the facility is calculated and approved”, said company representatives.

Saving water means investing in quality of life

The reuse of water is part of the Sustainable Production Strategy on which Porcelanosa Group has been working for six years and which has received a new boost with the Eco Conscious programme. 

It is estimated that more than 80% of wastewater discharged into rivers and seas is not treated in any way, affecting 361,000 children under five years of age who do not have access to drinking water. This situation could worsen if no measures are taken, as the OECD warns. This organisation estimates that in 2050, water demand could increase by up to 55% with half of the population at risk of water scarcity.

To address this, L’Antic Colonial cleans and optimises the water it uses in cutting its natural stone tablets, and Noken has launched a new line of sustainable products under the name WaterForest. This range includes ECO double-flush systems for toilets, cold-opening taps and thermostatic taps for showers, and it can save up to 89% of water. “All our taps have water purification systems that are used in the manufacturing process. At Noken we strive for zero waste in wastewater, so all the waters used in the production process are properly treated so that they can be reused in the process itself”, said company representatives.

With regard to sustainable facilities, the Porcelanosa Group’s bathroom firm has implemented testing machines to save water and energy, enabling hot water to return to each of the deposits and which are drained every six months. “If we didn’t have this system, we could consume about 140,000 litres of water and with our closed water circuit, we avoid excessive consumption of this resource”, the company said. This is also a philosophy that Urbatek practices through energy and water saving systems in the bathrooms at its offices.

At Krion, with its quality management, environment and energy policy, they manage water resources by controlling consumption with taps with flow reducers at all terminal points. In addition, a system has been implemented in the osmosis equipment used for testing at Krion’s laboratories that allows for the recirculation of water that was initially rejected by the system, so it can be used again. This methodology is followed by Butech in the manufacture of SYLASTIC, a high-quality waterproofing system that can be installed in swimming pools and that prevents water loss.