Airbus’ bottom line benefits from the company’s sustainable manufacturing efforts

17 July 2014 Feature story

Airbus has made continuous progress toward its ambitious blue5 targets for manufacturing, highlighting the company’s efforts to increase profits and introduce eco-friendly techniques across production activities. 

The blue5 initiative seeks to reduce the environmental impact of Airbus’ manufacturing operations in five key areas by 2020: energy, waste, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), water, and CO2. Airbus already has achieved its targets in several of these areas, with continuing strong progress toward the other goals.

Dave Micklewright, Airbus’ Head of Facility Management and Real Estate explained that with the application of sustainable technologies and processes in Airbus facilities around the world, extra up-front costs will be repaid through savings on lighting, heating, energy and water consumption in the long-run.

“Efficiency and cost reductions have been our core values for years and if we can meet those business requirements while respecting the environment, why wouldn’t we do it?” Micklewright said, noting that Airbus’ most recent new buildings have won the BREEAM (building research establishment environmental assessment methodology) award for sustainability.

“It is great to get recognition and our image is certainly enhanced, but first and foremost, we’re a business. When we’re working out how to use resources responsibly, we have to remember our prime responsibility to our shareholders and make sure that there are economic benefits too,” he added.