Experts from the French container glass sector discussed a project which will reduce emissions from the glass production process.

Leaders from glass producers Saverglass and Veresence joined energy company Engie in a webinar focused on the VERCANE project.

The project is a collaboration between the three French organisations as well as furnace technology supplier Fives and which aims to reduce emissions from the glass furnace in the manufacturing process.

Such a reduction will help ensure the industry to be carbon neutral in the near future.

They spoke at the Making Glass Packaging Fit for a Carbon Neutral Future webinar held last Monday and organised by the European Glass Container Federation (FEVE).

Speakers Frédéric Rougevin-Baville, Furnace & Glass Melting Group Manager of Verescence, Ludovic Ferrand, Future Industry Lab Manager of ENGIE Lab CRIGEN, and Frédéric Dupuis, R&D Director of Saverglass, joined Adeline Farrelly, Secretary General of FEVE – the European Container Glass Federation, to discuss potential new energy sources and shared some of the VERCANE project findings.

Opening proceedings, Adeline Farrelly said the industry was operating in a challenging environment with consumers having less disposable income to spend on discretionary purchases.

While brands and retailers were under pressure to live up to their sustainability commitments, packaging suppliers could support customers and help them deliver their sustainability commitments by living up to their own sustainability vision.

She added that the Q&A was not about today’s challenges such as soaring energy prices or shortage or materials but about the future for the industry.

“The challenges today will end one day and we need to be ready when that day comes.”

The glass industry is aiming to achieve a major revolution in how makes glass and make sure it is fit for a climate neutral economy.

The joint Furnaces for the Future visions are a common vision for the industry to decarbonise its production.

The Vercane project is one of those visions. It is an R&D programme that looks at how carbon neutrality can be achieved across the French glass packaging industry.

Ludovic Ferrand, said the Vercane project’s main ambitions were to map out low carbon options which are realistic from a technical point of view. It is focused on low carbon electricity, biogenic sources and low carbon hydrogen.

From these options the project put in place a methodology to explain what it implies in terms of new infrastructure, logistics, organisation, new jobs, new competencies and constraints in term of operations and maintenance.

After assessing 30 criteria that were evaluated for decision making.

On top of that the project also wanted to make sure it didn’t offset any positive environmental impact with new negative environmental impact such as impact on land usage and particulates.

“We paid special attention to address these potential border effects,” he said.

It applied this methodology in real cases while it worked on three glass manufacturing plants in France.

Once of the key takeaways is that each particular context impacts the final preferred solution.

In particular they realised it was possible to mobilise regional resources even within the neighbourhood of the plants, so decarbonisation options could be customised for each particular plant.

The entire webinar is available to watch on LinkedIn via