Taking carbon for the team
WoolWorks, New Zealand’s wool scouring company, has successfully decarbonised it’s Timaru facility as it rolls out its environmental strategy. The $9.5 million investment replaced a coal-fired boiler with an 8-Megawatt Electric Boiler resulting in a reduction of 11,000 tonne of CO2 emissions a year – akin to removing 3,000 cars from the roads. This project makes WoolWorks the second early-stage textile processor in the world to become decarbonised.
President Nigel Hales believes eco-credentials are of growing value to New Zealand’s strong wool industry, as materials and manufacturing processes are now being critiqued by responsible manufacturers and brands who want to partner with companies and people committed to climate action.
WoolWorks’ commitment to environmental sustainability is evident in every aspect of their wool scouring (washing) process. Using state of the art technology they turn out arguably the cleanest wool in the world in a process like a typical domestic washing machine, at scale. The scour lines measure up to 100 metres long and three metres wide, and contain 27 cubic metres of water; hence, requiring a large amount of energy to heat and operate. The process reuses and recycles water continuously and turns its waste streams into products of value.
From crisis comes opportunity and the destruction caused to WoolWorks’ Napier site by Cyclone Gabrielle gave the WoolWorks’ team the opportunity to evaluate how to build back better. Their new world-class facility will be up and running in 2024.