It is all about having sustainability in the company DNA

The Danish company Cotes, a leading supplier of adsorption dehumidifiers for industrial use, is very serious in its sustainability strategy and has given it an operational priority. This means that the company only works in segments which align with the company’s DNA, and where it is possible to make a positive impact on the sustainability agenda.
Henrik Malmgreen

“Being a responsible company has always been a part of the Cotes DNA. However, navigating sustainability in a changing world is a challenging discipline that calls for more action and a higher level of accountability.  At Cotes, we recognise the importance of committing ourselves to shape a better future for people, business as well as the planet, and last year, we started our journey to integrate sustainability into the core strategy and culture at every level of the Cotes organisation”.

So says CEO Martin Brøchner-Mortensen from the Danish company, and he adds, that Cotes as one of the world’s leading suppliers of adsorption dehumidifiers, in 2022 decided to broaden the perspective and zoom in on sustainability as a strategic and operational priority. With that he means, that Cotes does not go for all kinds of markets but aims to be leading in and dedicated to markets which align with the company’s DNA, and where it is possible to make a positive impact on the sustainability agenda.

Two strategic business areas
“Wind turbines and lithium-ion batteries for the car industry are a part of the green and sustainable transition of the world, and this transition, we want to be a part of. Wind turbines are getting more and more powerful, and today companies like Vestas, Siemens Gamesa and General Electric are already announcing and/or testing wind turbines that are closing in on 300 meters in height and 14-18 megawatts. Imagine how critical it will be, if such a wind turbine is inoperable for even a short amount of time”, Martin Brøchner-Mortensen continues. Many of these wind turbines will be in operation offshore, where it is essential to make them function in a dry- and salt-free environment. Cotes is a leading manufacturer of dehumidifiers on the market, that with patented technology can handle both humidity and salt effectively.

Talking about batteries in the car industry, it is essential to maintain an ultradry environment, because the manufacturing of lithium-ion batteries is a process that is extremely sensitive to humidity.

The business case is positive
“So, you see, it makes very good sense for us to work in those two markets, but we also have a third business leg, where we work closely with a global network of partners. Of course, a dehumidifier consumes energy, but at the end of the day the business case is quite positive because our products keep important and sustainable technologies fit for fight at all times”, Martin Brøchner-Mortensen adds.

Cotes designs, manufactures and sells, globally, and the mission is to make an impact with, what they call, “The Right Way To Dry” and among other things keep critical infrastructures running. But also, in the manufacturing and assembling of the products, sustainability is extremely important, and Cotes as a company has been analyzing, what it really means to operate and make business in a responsible manner.

Understanding the impact
“We worked with the Danish consultancy SustainX to get the ball rolling, helping us develop a common language around sustainability and to understand our impact on the climate and the UN SDG’s .

We focus on continuously reducing our greenhouse emissions, mapping, and reducing the waste we produce, making a sustainability parameter for our suppliers, supporting social development projects, and educating our employees”, Martin Brøchner-Mortensen continues. 

In 2023, Cotes aims to deliver on targets set by involving the rest of the organisation and the key suppliers to secure the right sustainable dry-air solutions. At the same time, the company will reduce the impact on the environment and enhance the positive impact on people’s lives. Cotes will establish a CO2 baseline, develop a CO2 reduction roadmap, launch an employee sustainability program, and join the UN Global Compact.

Going for the big zero in 2040
“Furthermore, we will commit to Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi), build Sustainability Governance, achieve the ISO 14001 certification at all operations, understand the waste streams and generate baseline, define, and design a Sustainable Supplier Program, and support social development projects. In 2024, we will stand accountable to our targets and the actions we have initiated”, Martin Brøchner-Mortensen says.

The goal is to demonstrate, that the company has made meaningful progress towards the targets, and looking down the road, 2030 is when Cotes wants to meet a 50percent reduction in waste generation relative to 2023, and 2040 is the big zero for Cotes. This will be the year, where the company, at the latest, reaches net-zero across all scopes – both in Scope 1, 2 and 3 – relative to 2021. Quite ambitious, but Martin Brøchner-Mortensen is very confident to make it happen.

Facts about Cotes
Cotes is a Danish company founded in 1986. The headquarter is in Viby J, Denmark, and the company is represented in all of the Nordic regions. Between 2020 and 2021, Cotes reduced the total tonnes of greenhouse emission gases by 33 percent, a number that the company is proud of and continues to work on reducing across all different sides of the business. 

After a thorough process, Cotes has selected five United Nations Sustainable Development Goals to define the work on sustainability at Cotes:

• #6 Clean water and sanitation.

• #7 Affordable and clean energy.

• #8 Decent work and economic growth.

• #10 Reduced inequalities.

• #12 Responsible consumption and production.

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