Lifespan water goes green

Lifespan water goes green

BY SHARLENE HENDRICKS
Staff reporter
hendrickss@jamaicaobserver.com

Sunday, March 29, 2020

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With the issue of single-use plastic and pollution evermore present in the public consciousness, local businesses are starting to make adjustments to safeguard the environment.

Bottled water company Lifespan has taken up the mantle of going green by adopting environmentally friendly measures; primary among them is the installation of renewable energy systems to lessen their carbon footprint.

“We are going 100 per cent green,” Lifespan CEO Nyana Williams stated in an interview with the Jamaica Observer last week.

“Already we have installed a solar farm which has allowed us to cut back on the electricity we take from JPS [Jamaica Public Service Co Ltd] and is now saving us about 30 per cent on our electricity bill,” said Williams.

The 100 kVA (volt-ampere) grid-tied system, Williams explained, will be twinned with a state-of-the-art LNG (liquefied natural gas) turbine generator, still to be installed, which will take the company over 100 per cent green energy.

“We are in the process now of installing a turbine generator which will take us off JPS completely. So we will have 100 per cent green energy and our back-up will be JPS. This again will reduce our carbon footprint by 60 per cent,” she said.

“Globally, the carbon footprint of bottled water is only one per cent, but, we have taken additional measures to reduce our carbon footprint,” Williams added. “We go beyond just providing this necessary resource by using the most convenient packaging which is PET (polyethylene terephthalate), which is a more environmentally friendly plastic and it is safer to use and easy to recycle. The plastic itself can be melted down and reused to make different products once placed into recycling.”

The Portland-based company has also taken a creative approach in protecting the environment by implementing other sustainable practices, including the repurposing their solid waste materials used in manufacturing.

“So, for example, we repurpose the wooden pallets and other items that can no longer be repaired to make furniture. If you come to our lobby what you will sit in are some chairs made from wooden pallets we have re-purposed. Even our wall displays are made from repurposed material,” said Williams.

Operating out of Spring Gardens, Buff Bay, Lifespan abstracts freshwater from a spring fed by the aquifers flowing from the Blue Mountains. This, Williams says, enables the company to have a continuous supply of the natural resource.

“The heavy rainfall in the Blue Mountains takes approximately 15 years for it to get to our spring. And the spring that we abstract from flows at a rate of about 1,000 gallons per minute of which we are only capturing a tiny fraction of those 1,000 gallons per minute.

“So, although we have experienced a number of droughts in Jamaica, it has never affected our source. Because of the way the spring is situated, you find that even when it is really hot or when there is a drought, water is still flowing from the mountains,” said Williams.

“We work in a natural environment and our product is a natural resource. Not everyone is lucky enough to have a spring where they can go and just capture water and drink it. Our idea was to capture this water and make it available to consumers far and wide.

“Our vision is to promote health and life globally,” she added.


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