TSA is committed to promoting environmental responsibility within the laundry and dry cleaning industry.
Commercial Laundries and Textile Rental Companies
TSA negotiated the Climate Change Agreement with the government to encourage laundries and textile rental services to use energy more efficiently. Participating businesses commit to reducing their energy consumption by 20% before the year 2020. It’s a stringent target for an industrial sector, but the reward is a substantial rebate on the Climate Change Levy tax – 90% for electricity, 65% for gas. Those who don’t meet the target have to buy back carbon, equivalent to a heavy fine.
So far, progress has been impressive. We are proud of the many TSA members who have joined the scheme and are working hard to meet their targets. Already the energy savings made are significant.
Textile rental industry environmental pledge
Textile rental services are by their nature sustainable, since they provide an alternative to disposal and reduce the proliferation of on-premise laundries.
In addition, the industry has made a pledge through the Climate Change Agreement that it will strive to minimise the environmental impact of its operations, committing to ambitious targets for annual improvement as well as long-term environmental goals. The pledge has been welcomed by the Environment Agency.
TSA is currently exploring circular economies and ethical sources of linen as a means of improving our industry’s sustainability. Watch this space for new developments.
For example, the dry cleaning process continuously recycles solvent, which is filtered, distilled, cleaned and reused throughout the wash cycle. Modern machines are capable of extracting and reusing up to 99.99% of the solvent used for each load.
An alternative process called wet cleaning is also available. It uses biodegradable soaps, gentle washing machines and specialised pressing equipment to achieve results similar to conventional dry cleaning machines.
Due to the presence of volatile organic compounds, the Solvent Emissions Directive (SED) requires dry cleaners to hold a licence. The TSA has helped to negotiate a fair, reasonable rate based on the SED’s recognition that the industry’s use of solvents is minimal.