The connection between first responders and sustainability

Most do not immediately associate first responders with sustainability. However, this week as we celebrate both National First Responder Day and Sustainability Day, let’s consider how they overlap.

Both protect our way of life – first responders, including law enforcement, EMTs, paramedics and fire rescue personnel, keep our communities safe while sustainability saves our planet, ensuring it can house future generations. We recognize the importance of both, and that there is no room to compromise when it comes to arming our first responders with protection and future-proof solutions.

That is why we are dedicated innovators in personal protection and proud trailblazers in sustainability. Our emphasis on carbon footprint reduction, responsible manufacturing, and end-of-life product solutions are helping reduce the long-term effects of body armor on both users and the planet. 

With increasing regulations on the manufacturing industry’s CO2 emissions, waste prevention and recycling measures being passed by local, state and federal governments, first responders and sustainability’s connection is likely to continue strengthening. These regulations could make sustainability a required consideration as public funds are used to procure and purchase protective body armor, including soft armor vests, hard armor plates, ballistic helmets and more.

Dyneema® is proud to enable carbon footprint reduction without sacrificing the crucial, lifesaving performance of ballistic materials. We are already leading the way for our industry with products that have a carbon footprint that is 50-80% lower than competitive materials, and we are not stopping there. Through continuous R&D and product innovation, we are currently working to sustain both people and planet through these key initiatives:  

  • Launching bio-based Dyneema® fiber, the world’s first-ever bio-based HMPE fiber
  • Hitting our 2030 target to power sites with >75% renewable electricity ahead of schedule
  • Reducing our Scope 1 & 2 emissions by more than 50% from 2016-2021

Sustainability goes beyond production. It also extends to longevity of materials and end-of-life material solutions.  

Dyneema® has the highest strength-to-weight ratio of any material on earth, providing multi-threat protection for ballistic, cut and slash threats all while showing no performance degradation after 10 years. This means longer lasting body armor for first responders without sacrificing performance or protection.

Of course, when personal protective equipment meets its end, we are working to ensure that process is sustainable too. We are doing this through initiatives like the CirculariTeam®, a first-of-its-kind cross-industry coalition, which provides a common platform to share knowledge, resources, and technical solutions with the aim to close the loop on the world’s strongest fiber™.

Linear consumption of material resources is driving several urgent challenges – including natural resource depletion, climate change, and environmental pollution. To secure future availability of our natural resources, we are prioritizing these seven focus areas:

  • Reverse logistics
  • Recycle and reuse
  • Efficiency in production processes
  • Separation of waste into material components
  • Design for circularity
  • Regulation
  • Information sharing

This week as we celebrated National First Responder Day and Sustainability Day, we are proud to be leading the way in sustaining both people and planet. Learn more about our efforts towards sustainability here.

Published on

28 October 2022

Tags

  • Protective Armor
  • Sustainability

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