Tate & Lyle PLC, a global provider of food and beverage ingredients and solutions, has announced that it has delivered on its commitment to eliminate the use of coal-based energy in all its operations across the world. This commitment, targeted for delivery by 2025, has been met four years ahead of schedule.

This marks the completion of a multi-year capital investment program totaling more than US$150 million to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase efficiency in Tate & Lyle’s plants. This has been achieved primarily by replacing coal systems with natural gas-fired combined heat and power systems at four corn wet mills in the US in Loudon, Tennessee, Decatur, Illinois and both plants in Lafayette, Indiana. The Sagamore plant in Lafayette decommissioned its coal system in 2014, followed by Loudon in 2017, then the Lafayette South plant earlier this year. With the decommissioning of the final coal system at the Decatur, Illinois plant last month, Tate & Lyle delivered on its commitment.

As well as delivering significant environmental and economic improvements, the elimination of coal-based energy at these sites means less water will be used and local communities will benefit from improved air quality and less truck traffic.

Tate & Lyle has a strong track record of energy efficiency. In September 2021, Tate & Lyle’s Loudon and Lafayette South plants in the US were awarded Energy Star Certification by the Environmental Protection Agency for the fifth and seventh years in a row, respectively.  A new biomass boiler is being constructed at its acidulants plant in Santa Rosa, Brazil, and Tate & Lyle’s Scope 1, 2 and 3¹ greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets for 2030 have been validated as science-based by the Science Based Targets initiative.

Sara Leeman, Tate & Lyle’s global environmental lead, said: “Moving away from onsite coal consumption is a key part of our sustainability programme to drive a significant reduction in our Scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions. We have now fully decommissioned all onsite coal systems at our sites.”

Melissa Law, president, global operations, Tate & Lyle explains: “This has been a huge undertaking for us spanning many years from the first site to the last. It’s been very much a journey of continuous improvement and a real collaborative effort across all our sites. I am proud of our achievements so far and the real difference we are making to the communities where we operate.”

Nick Hampton, chief executive, Tate & Lyle added: “It’s clear that time is running out to make the changes needed to tackle climate change and enable societies to prosper. With COP26 taking place this month, we recognise the need for businesses to play their part in reducing global greenhouse gas emissions. By eliminating the use of coal-based energy in all our plants we have taken a significant step forward in our sustainability journey. We know we can, and need, to do more in the weeks, months and years ahead, and are committed to living our purpose, of which caring for our planet is a key pillar.”