Eco-conscious consumers are stimulating the demand for greener products, that are actually more cost effective in the long run
While 2019 will be remembered for a 16-year-old who made the climate change crisis the hottest topic in political discourse and drawing room conversations, the good news is that in 2020 it will continue to occupy world consciousness. While Greta Thunberg increased awareness about global warming, millennials have to be credited for increasing the pressure on companies to be eco-conscious.
After years of conspicuous consumption and a disregard for its consequences, consumers and companies are both waking up to using natural resources with more care and respect. As Franz Kook, management board chairman of Duravit, said: “Even though sustainability starts with the individual, whose washing, eating and consumer habits trigger a domino effect with consequences for our planet that are multiplied a billion times over, companies that manufacture millions of goods for distribution around the world and that employ a large number of people bear a particular responsibility.”
German supplier Duravit harmonised the geometry of the body of the toilet with the flushing volume and reduced the amount of water consumed by its toilets to six litres as opposed to the nine or more litres that were standard at the time. Thanks to ongoing research and development, Duravit is today able to offer toilets that flush hygienically using just six, four and a half or even less water. Thanks to the Dual-flush technology used in its toilets, a household of four can additionally save about 17,000 litres of water per year by choosing to flush with just half the water volume.
According to Geberit, it’s estimated that an average household uses over 33 litres of water from flushing alone every day. The supplier recommends cisterns with dual flush technology that use as little as 4.5 litres per flush, compared to a traditional 9 litre flushing system. The Geberit Sigma concealed cistern is a good example of this and is just one easy way to reduce water consumption. Geberit AquaClean has TurboFlush technology so the toilet can be effectively flushed out even with a partial flush, due to its single water release point and targeted flush water flow guidance. The Swiss supplier also recommends doing away with paper, and using water for cleaning, and the toilet even features an energy-saving mode to allow homeowners to consciously opt for more eco-friendly options in the bathroom.
Suppliers are also upping their green credentials with products that require less cleaning and maintenance, hence saving on water and cleaning materials in the long run. Duravit’s easy-care coating on ceramics for the bathroom and kitchen, WonderGliss, was developed on the basis of nanotechnology. The coating is fired right into the ceramics so dirt and limescale cannot secure a hold and residues run off more easily with the water.
Wherever it makes ecological sense, Duravit has been using resource-saving LEDs (light emitting diodes) for years. Applications include the light and coloured-light programmes for bathtubs, whirltubs, pools and saunas, as well as the controls on bathtubs or mirrors with integrated light. This generates power savings of up to 80% compared with halogen lights. Only LEDs and energy-saving lights are used to illuminate Duravit bathroom furniture.
With the aim of becoming the first leading sanitary supplier to achieve carbon-neutral production by 2020, Grohe has once again stepped up its pledge. In July 2019, all five of its production plants worldwide as well as the logistics centres in Germany were converted to run on green electricity. “More than ever, manufacturers like Grohe are in demand to take on responsibility and strive towards more sustainability,” says Thomas Fuhr, CEO, Grohe. “For years now, we have been investing not only in research and development in order to produce intelligent, sustainable solutions, but also to a large degree in a resource-saving value chain. We are actively addressing the CO2 challenge by increasingly avoiding emissions and, if this is not possible, compensating for them.”