Dual celebration for Saint-Gobain

Saint-Gobain Glass has been named as a finalist in two categories at the prestigious G23 Awards.

The business has been shortlisted in the Sustainability Initiative of the Year and the Commercial Project of the Year categories.

Post-consumer glass recycling

The glass manufacturer is in the running for the Sustainability Initiative of the Year award after joining forces with integral blinds manufacturer Morley Glass & Glazing to create the first successful closed-loop post-consumer glass recycling scheme that turns old glass units into new high-performance window glass.

Mike Butterick, marketing director at Saint-Gobain Glass, said: “The initiative involves collecting old insulated glass units, removed during home refurbishment and window replacement projects, and converting them into cullet (crushed glass) using a patented automated crushing machine. The cullet is then used in the manufacture of new high-performance window glass.

“It is important that, as an industry, we embrace the opportunity to remanufacture old, poorly performing first-generation double-glazed windows into new high-performance windows that contribute to improving the comfort and thermal performance of our housing stock, and by doing so help to meet our net zero climate change targets.”

For the project to succeed, it was crucial that the process would make it easy for installers to divert their post-consumer glass away from landfill – both companies recognised that adding significant time or cost to an installer’s working routine would greatly undermine the chances of the scheme succeeding.

The solution was for Morley Glass to use its vans to deliver integral blinds and at the same time collect old IGUs from its customers’ premises and transport them to Morley’s factory, rather than returning empty.

Morley Glass installers are not charged for the glass collection service, removing one of the barriers for participation. But, more importantly, by taking advantage of the service installers save money on their waste disposal costs, providing an immediate financial benefit.

The two companies have together saved over 1 million tonnes of raw materials from the flat glass manufacturing process, plus vast amounts of energy and CO2 emissions, and donated thousands of pounds to environmental and social good causes through Morley’s GreenVision fund.

Morley donates the money for the cullet from Saint-Gobain Glass to help charities, groups and individuals who are working to improve their local community through environmental or social projects. Grants of £500 are awarded to anyone who qualifies, and so far, it has benefitted good causes ranging from ‘village in bloom’ groups to budding sportsmen and women and a scheme to support young entrepreneurs.

A black and white decision

Saint-Gobain Glass’ work on the 17.8m high Black & White Building in Central London has been recognised in the Commercial Project of the Year category.

The structure is the tallest mass timber office building and the first fully engineered timber structure in the city since 1666. Embracing innovative construction processes and sustainable materials the six-storey property is powered by 100% renewable energy sources and has over a third less embodied carbon than equivalent concrete structures.

Euroview Architectural Glass processed the glass for the glazed curtain wall. It featured Cool-Lite SKN183 solar control glass from Saint-Gobain Glass on the outer pane with a bespoke digitally printed wood effect inner pane of glass to continue the natural wood effect used throughout the exterior and interior of the building.

Mike added: “We’re thrilled to have been shortlisted in two categories. Being named as a finalist in the G23 Sustainability Initiative of the Year category alongside Morley Glass & Glazing is a testament to our commitment to help the UK window industry move towards a position where glass recycling is the norm, in line with the way that fabricators collect and recycle old PVC frames, metal and timber.

“We are also very proud of our work with Euroview Architectural Glass on the Black & White Building which is a super low carbon building that embraced efficient and sustainable building materials and processes despite the central London location with difficult access and site restrictions.

“Both these award shortlistings further enhance our reputation and credibility as a glass company that is ‘making the world a better home’ with our commitment to the environment and more sustainable business practices.”

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