LEGO announce sizeable sustainability plans

It’s a tad longer dialogue than we usually have here but it’s full of commitments from the Danish brick builder and we don’t want you to miss a single one. They’re leading the way in toys/play and most likely investing more than many other businesses…

The LEGO Group today announced plans to invest up to US$400 million over three years to accelerate sustainability and social responsibility initiatives. The investment will cover both long-term investments and ongoing costs.  The company, which has made a series of moves over the past 10 years to build a better planet for future generations, believes it’s increasingly urgent and important to prioritise environmental and social activity.

The LEGO Group CEO, Niels B Christiansen said:  “We cannot lose sight of the fundamental challenges facing future generations.  It’s critical we take urgent action now to care for the planet and future generations. As a company who looks to children as our role models, we are inspired by the millions of kids who have called for more urgent action on climate change. We believe they should have access to opportunities to develop the skills necessary to create a sustainable future. We will step up our efforts to use our resources, networks, expertise and platforms to make a positive difference.”

As a next step, the company will begin to phase out single-use plastic bags used in LEGO boxes to package the loose bricks. This is part of its ambition to make all its packaging sustainable by the end of 2025. From 2021, Forest Stewardship Council-certified recyclable paper bags will be trialled in boxes.

Christiansen said: “We have received many letters from children about the environment asking us to remove single-use plastic packaging. We have been exploring alternatives for some time and the passion and ideas from children inspired us to begin to make the change.”

Programmes will be put in place to encourage people to donate their pre-loved bricks to children in need of play. LEGO Replay, which was successfully trialled in the United States in 2019, will be rolled out in two additional countries by the end of 2022. So far, LEGO Replay has donated bricks to over 23,000 children across the United States.

Work will continue on the company’s Sustainable Materials Programme, which employs more than 150 experts, to create sustainable products and packaging. In 2015, the Group set a target to make its products from sustainable materials by 2030. It will expand its use of bio-bricks, such as those made from sugar cane, which currently account for almost 2% of its element portfolio.

It will continue research into new, more sustainable plastics from renewable and recycled sources, and join forces with research institutes and other companies especially those developing new recycling and bio-based material production technologies to find materials which are as durable and high quality as those used today.

The planned investments include both costs associated with the development of new sustainable materials and the investments in manufacturing equipment.

The Group’s manufacturing operations will be carbon neutral by 2022. To achieve this, additional solar panels will be installed on all its factories and onsite capacity will be supplemented with the procurement of renewable energy. No waste will be diverted to landfill by 2025 and water use will drop by 10% by 2022.

Christiansen said:  “At a time when the world is facing numerous challenges, companies must take action to create a lasting positive impact on the environment and society.  No one can do it alone.  I urge companies, governments, parents, children and NGOs to continue to join forces to create a sustainable future for our children, the builders of tomorrow.”

www.billedwerk.dk

About Peter Jenkinson

Peter Jenkinson
Toyologist Pete Jenkinson regularly writes about toys in national newspapers like The Sun and The Mail. This super-dad has an unmatched passion and dedication for trying and testing the latest, coolest and most interesting offerings from the world of toys.

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