By Stacy M. Brown, NNPA Newswire Senior National Correspondent
In a move to accelerate the decarbonization of the glass industry on an international scale, Diageo, a prominent sponsor for the 2024 National Newspaper Publishers Association’s (NNPA) annual Midwinter Training Conference, has announced a strategic initiative. Diageo will provide seed funding to facilitate the expansion of Glass Futures activities into North America and India, two of the company’s largest markets.
Glass Futures, a leading glass research and technology organization, is partnering with Diageo to explore effective pathways to decarbonize the glass industry. This collaboration is part of Diageo’s commitment to sustainable practices and environmental responsibility.
The NNPA, representing 250 African American newspapers and media companies in the United States, is hosting its annual mid-winter training conference in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., beginning on Wednesday, January 24, at the B Ocean Beach Resort. The theme of the 2024 conference is “Empower the Black Press, the Black Vote, and Black America.” Diageo’s involvement reflects a commitment to impactful corporate partnerships.
With additional funding from Diageo, Glass Futures aims to delve into new technologies and system-wide approaches. The focus is reducing carbon emissions associated with glass production in North America and India, where Diageo has significant market influence.
While glass is inherently recyclable, addressing the carbon footprint of its production poses a challenge for the industry. Technological advancements and the limited availability of renewable energy infrastructure have contributed to this challenge. As a proactive supporter of Glass Futures, Diageo has been integral to driving innovative solutions.
“We’re looking forward to expanding our partnership with Glass Futures into North America and India to look into lower-carbon glass production,” stated Andy Griffiths, head of Sustainable Procurement at Diageo.
“This is key for the success of Diageo’s and the wider glass industry’s decarbonization efforts. Partnering on innovative approaches is vital to making a net-zero world a reality, and we are hopeful that this collaboration will bring great results in other markets going forward.”
Officials said that the collaboration between Diageo and Glass Futures has already yielded positive results in the UK. A 2021 trial involving Glass Futures, Diageo, and Encirc showcased waste-based biofuel-powered furnaces for Diageo’s Black & White Scotch whisky brand. This innovative approach resulted in a remarkable 90% reduction in the carbon footprint of the bottle-making process.
Diageo’s seed investment in Glass Futures’ international expansion reportedly aligns with the company’s broader commitment to environmental, social, and governance (ESG) targets. The initiative contributes to Diageo’s goal of reducing Scope 3 carbon emissions by 50%, measured against its 2020 baseline by 2030.
Meanwhile, Diageo’s Vice President Stephanie Childes plans to sit with NNPA President and CEO Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis Jr. during the NNPA’s popular fireside chat at 11:50 a.m. on Thursday, January 25, at the midwinter training conference in Fort Lauderdale. The discussion will center on harnessing the power of community, the Black Press, and inclusive corporate leadership.