Reducing natural gas consumption

Lely strives towards circular dairy farming. To set a good example, we are raising the bar in sustainability as well as within our way of working. A programme has already begun in which Lely commits to becoming carbon neutral in our own operations by 2030. We have bundled initiatives from different departments and expertise to create a series called Sustainability Stories. With these stories, we plan to showcase our sustainable and circular projects. In this story, we highlight the switch to solar panels to generate our own electricity, which is used for heating. 

We spoke to Tabe Vrieswijk, center manager at Lely Center Zevenbergen. 

Installation of solar panels 

One way to work towards CO2 neutrality in 2030 is to reduce gas consumption in both our own operations and our Lely Owned Lely Centers. Together with our Lely Centers, we analyse gas consumption and advise on various strategies for reduction. By replacing gas with electricity for heating, we can make our buildings more sustainable and circular. That is why Lely Center Zevenbergen rents a building with 60 solar panels since 2021. Tabe: ‘With these panels, we can generate our own electricity and partly reduce our consumption of natural gas’. 

Circular heating system 

Until 2022, the building was heated by a gas central heating system. The Lely Center then switched to an air-conditioning system, which both cooled and heated the building using electricity. By using self-generated electricity to cool and heat the building, our buildings can become more circular. In the winter of 2022/2023, this new air-conditioning system was the main heating source. This resulted in a reduction in natural gas consumption of 30% in the first half of 2023. Tabe: ‘Based on feedback from our employees, the thermostat was set 1 degree higher for the winter of 2023/2024 to maintain a more comfortable temperature. Throughout 2023, our Zevenbergen location eventually saved about 55% of the natural gas used as compared to 2022’.

As for the future: ‘We are currently discussing the possibility of switching to an electric heat pump with the owner of the building to make the building even more sustainable’. 

Why Lely?

Farmers all over the world make choices about how they set up and run their farms. Every day, we help them make the best choices for themselves and their farms. We do this by providing advice and innovative solutions that contribute to efficient farm management. For sustainable milk and meat production. Present and future.

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