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Sustainability - top priority for companies in Hamburg

Small, sustainable solutions with big impact

Social and environment-friendly conduct on a par with sustainability are key success factors in Hamburg as shown by over 1,000 companies in the environmental partnership between the senate and commerce who have saved over 300,000 tons of CO2. Speaking at the environmental summit in June, Kai Elmendorf, Vice President of the Hamburg Chamber of Commerce, said: “Environmental protection starts with low pollutant transport and alternative energies and goes hand with the greening of rooftops and refurbishing machines and buildings or developing entirely new technologies.”

Prize for commitment to sustainability

The Otto Group is showing great commitment to sustainability and unveiled a roadmap of objectives for 2017 as part of the multi-stakeholder “Partnership for Sustainable Textiles” in early August. Initiated by the German government, the partnership is aiming for social, environmental and economic progress along the textile supply chain. Otto has urged other members of the partnership to undertake joint efforts to secure its effectiveness and sustainability. Meanwhile, the ZEIT WISSEN Mut zur Nachhaltigkeit prize is seeking pioneers of sustainable development.

Breeze sensors

Small solutions such as” sensors devised by pioneering Hamburg-based start-ups like Breeze can go a long way towards sustainability. Their sensors gauge the amount of dust, ozone and nitrogen in the air, for instance, on streetlamps. An environmental analytics cloud platform gathers real-time data from the sensors and external data sources and links up to a catalogue of around 3,500 measures.

Sustainability in logistics

The Hamburg-based Nüwiel start-up tested its intelligent, electricity-run bicycle trailer for the logistics sector this summer. The trailer’s design helps reduce noise, traffic jams and pollution. The city of Hamburg is also promoting lucrative, cleantech innovations and put EUR 4.45 million towards the “InnovationCampus Green Technologies” that opened in February. The campus serves as a first point of contact for founders at colleges and universities and technology-based start-ups.

Fashion proving sustainable

Small fashion labels can also be drivers of sustainability as the global fashion industry is notorious for bad work conditions and unsustainable production processes. But fledgling fashion labels such as the Hamburg-based Bridge&Tunnel are doing pioneering work with transparent, regional production while remaining fashionable. Sweaters, rucksacks and carpets are all produced from recycled materials. Apart from their emphasis on local production and recycling, founders Constanze Klotz and Hanna Charlotte Erhorn are also keen to give foreigners with little or no access to the German labour market a chance. Talented seamstresses from India and Turkey operate the sewing machines. pb

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