Biodiversity & Environment
The protection and preservation of our environment is firmly embedded in Wienerberger’s perception of its corporate mission: We respect nature reserves, use resources sparingly, and foster biodiversity at our production sites. Over the past 40 years, the world has seen an unprecedented loss of biodiversity – a development we must counteract.
Environmental Protection as Part of our Business Model
For Wienerberger as a producing company, natural resources are indispensable. Our commitment is to supply top-quality products and, at the same time, protect the environment to the best of our abilities.
Value creation: Half of the global gross domestic product (GDP), i.e. EUR 40 trillion, is dependent on nature. For Wienerberger, the preservation of the environment is an essential factor of sustainable business management. Environmental protection plays a crucial role along our entire value chain.
Biodiversity: All over the world, the natural balance has been profoundly upset. The main causes relate to the classic environmental problems, including climate change due to the emission of greenhouse gases, the sealing of surfaces, and nutrient and pollutant input in ecosystems. Over the past 40 years, 60% of the global wildlife population has been lost. A million species are at risk of extinction. By fostering biodiversity at all our sites, we improve land use and provide valuable habitat for flora and fauna in terms of quality and quantity.
Climate change: Biodiversity loss and the climate crisis are two phenomena that are closely connected and reinforce one another. The efforts necessary to contain climate change by 2030 therefore also involve measures such as soil rehabilitation, the restoration of wetlands, or the creation of green oases in cities.
What We Want to Achieve
Biodiversity program for all our sites until 2023
We have set ourselves a clear goal: By 2023, we will implement a biodiversity action plan based on the Wienerberger Biodiversity Program at all Wienerberger production and office sites.
What We Are Doing
- We are doing our utmost to minimize the impacts of raw material extraction and production on the environment. We are committed to nature conservation and the improvement of biodiversity.
- We are recultivating and renaturing depleted clay extraction sites or making them available for subsequent use. Depleted clay pits provide ideal conditions to attract rare plants and animals. We are implementing appropriate measures in cooperation with local partners from agriculture or with local residents.
- We avoid and substitute hazardous waste, especially in raw materials.
- Climate action and biodiversity are taken into account in the design of products and system solutions.
We are convinced that businesses create a stronger impact by joining their forces together for positive change. In addition to our own commitments, we take part in unified initiatives working for the preservation of nature and have signed Business for Nature’s Call to Action. This initiative calls on governments to adopt ambitious policies to reverse biodiversity loss in this decade and engage to positively influence them on international agreements for nature and climate change. Meetings of the UN Convention on Biodiversity and UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) will be particularly targeted. Wienerberger strongly supports this opportunity to become more resilient and thrive within, not beyond nature’s limits. Building collective movements are key for evolving towards a world where nature is preserved.
The climate crisis is a fact, and only with determined sustainability goals and decisive action can we shape a future worth living. We can’t go on without nature as our ally. Forward-thinking companies already understand why building an equitable and net-zero future also benefits business. That’s why we have signed up to Business for Nature Coalition's call on governments to adopt ambitious policies to protect nature. Together we can transform our impact:
“By providing a unified business voice, we can help influence policies that promote sustainable growth, halt the decline of biodiversity and stop climate change.” Business for Nature
What is Business for Nature
Business for Nature is a global coalition bringing together influential organizations and forward-thinking businesses. Together, we demonstrate business action and amplify a powerful business voice calling for collective action including for governments to reverse nature loss in this decade.
Our Success and our Challenges
Habitats for Animals and Plants
- Our clay pits provide an environment conducive to biodiversity. The Biodiversity Action Plan is being adapted to the local conditions at our sites. Take the example of Orchard Farm in Kent, in the southeast of England, where Wienerberger is converting clay extraction sites step by step into habitat for animals and plants that are at risk of extinction.
- Our product range for roofs and facades includes nesting boxes for birds and bats. Ceramic products can be fitted with insect hotels and nesting options for small mammals.
- In our efforts to promote biodiversity, we are drawing on best-practice examples. These include renaturing projects at depleted clay pits and beehives on the roof of the Wienerberger headquarters in Vienna.
- Our objective is to ensure that land use by Wienerberger has a positive long-term impact on biodiversity. To this end, we will upgrade existing surfaces and enter into new partnerships for compensatory measures.
As a manufacturing company, Wienerberger cares about environmental responsibility. The Biodiversity Program is an important part of our Sustainability Program 2023. We are looking forward to having a biodiversity action plan implemented at all our production sites within the framework of this program.,