On February 14, Novelis Inc., the world leader in aluminum rolling and recycling, announced the establishment of a long-term collaboration agreement with HES-SO Valais-Wallis, in collaboration with EPFL's Energypolis Campus, a Swiss innovation and research hub, and energy distributor OIKEN, to establish a joint research and development (R & D) laboratory to advance carbon-neutral aluminum manufacturing solutions.
The research and development lab, dubbed Net Zero Lab Valais, will be housed at Novelis' Sierre, Switzerland, facility. Due to the availability of renewable energy and excellent research institutes, as well as a strong commitment to sustainability, the Sierre site, the greater Valais area, and Switzerland as a whole are a perfect match for the planned activities. The lab's work will be focused on discovering and implementing creative solutions to help Novelis' industrial operations and nearby communities, beginning in Sierre, achieve carbon neutrality. At the facility, we want it to be carbon neutral for emissions from scopes 1 and 2. We want this to be done by 2030.
"As the industry leader and the world's largest aluminum recycler, Novelis is committed to becoming carbon neutral by 2050 or sooner, We are very excited about this partnership because it shows that we are very serious about making the world a better place together."
-Pierre Labat, Senior Vice President and Chief Strategy and Sustainability Officer, Novelis Inc.
During the initial months of the collaboration, the Net Zero Lab Valais will conduct research to develop decarbonization options and create an ecosystem through which Novelis, in partnership with OIKEN, will share energy generated at its Sierre plant with the local community. This will contribute to the reduction of the area's carbon footprint and the industrial site's carbon footprint.
"We are working relentlessly on reducing all emissions at our sites, in our supply chain, and in the energy we use,The Net Zero Lab Valais is another lever for increasing energy efficiency, reducing waste and supporting our communities. We will develop innovative solutions that we can later implement on a broader scale at our different production sites across the globe, while we simultaneously continue to work on increasing the recycled content in our products to deliver the lowest total carbon footprint for aluminum sheet. We are very proud to have such strong and experienced partners as HES-SO Valais-Wallis, EPFL and OIKEN at our side to drive carbon neutral production."
-Emilio Braghi, Executive Vice President, Novelis Inc., and President, Novelis Europe.
We are excited about kicking-off this laboratory for applied research activities and finding solutions for reducing CO2 emissions in the aluminum industry, said François Seppey, Director of HES-SO Valais-Wallis. "Sustainable development is at the heart of the strategy of the HES-SO Valais-Wallis. The competences within our energy and environmental research institute perfectly meet the challenges of this collaboration with Novelis. Not only are the employees knowledgeable and passionate about sustainability, but the plant also includes all manufacturing steps in the aluminum production process and an R & D center, which will support meaningful research.This lab will be an ideal ecosystem to develop outstanding skills for early career engineers and enhance their contribution to the decarbonization of the whole industry in the near future.
The Net Zero Lab Valais is a model for joining efforts between research and industry to decrease the carbon footprint of a region and understand the symbiosis between industrial activities and the energy system," said Professor François Marechal, Head of the Industrial Process and Energy Systems Engineering group at EPFL. "At the same time, it will give early-career talented engineers the chance to gain valuable insights and knowledge in applied and fundamental research.
The Net Zero Lab Valais is an important initiative to help decarbonize the region," said François Fellay, CEO of OIKEN. "In addition, by supplying waste heat into the future district heating system, Novelis' manufacturing site will also become a major contributor to our low carbon energy system.
*Statements in this press release that indicate Novelis' plans, expectations, or projections may be considered forward-looking statements under securities laws