H&M makes first investment in decarbonisation tech

H&M has partnered with Rondo Energy, which provides of zero-carbon industrial heat and power, to explore the potential for heat storage technology in its supply chain.

The fashion retailer will also make an investment in the company through its investment arm H&M Group Venture and join Rondo’s Strategic Investor Advisory Board.

The company uses automation to turn intermittent renewable electricity into the continuous, high-temperature heat and power. Rondo claims its technology can replace most fossil fuels used in fabric production and could cut the carbon footprint of clothing manufacture by nearly two-thirds.

H&M said it has been investing steadily in decarbonising its supply chain through several initiatives to support suppliers reducing their use of energy, increasing their use of renewable electricity and replacing fossil fuels.

Rondo said the partnership will enable textile factories around the world to use clean, affordable heat energy by using the investment to expand its international operations and build storage projects.

"Rondo is H&M Group Venture's first investment in decarbonisation technology,” said Laura Coppen, sustainability investments at H&M Group. “The company's thermal battery energy storage has the potential to help factories electrify, which is key to achieving our climate targets.”

Last year, Zara also took steps to lower its carbon footprint after signing a three-year agreement to buy a portion of the annual production of cycora, a material made from post-industrial and post-consumer polyester waste.

The company said that the €70 million deal with Los Angeles-based material science company Ambercycle, which produces the material, would help to scale production of recycled polyester on an industrial scale.

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