New Tauranga Facility | Business

Raising the Sustainability Bar with Winstone Wallboard’s New Tauranga Manufacturing and Distribution Centre

Wednesday, 12 July 2023
By Stewart Vaughan

Several years ago, when our multimillion-dollar Tauranga manufacturing and distribution centre was just in the initial design phase, the team at Winstone Wallboards made a commitment to integrate some game-changing sustainability initiatives into the design and operation of the building.   

The aim was for the organisation to not only operate more sustainably but look at ways we could meaningfully reduce our carbon emissions, a huge feat considering the facility will increase production capacity at the same time.


Rinse, recycle, and repeat

The new Tauranga plant integrates some state-of-the-art technology, including a sizable investment in a new plasterboard recycling facility, that can process plasterboard waste converting it into a raw material. It’s not just about recycling the organisation’s own internal waste but having the ability to introduce new more sustainable products, with the recycling facility allowing the production of new GIB® plasterboard manufactured using the waste as a raw material source.  

The facility will also have the added benefit of being able to recycle new plasterboard waste from the market as well. This is huge for the building industry, who we know are just as eager as we are to integrate more recycling of building materials into their operations. It also supports our move away from a more traditional linear manufacturing model, which has an end-of-life for products, to collectively working in a more circular way.


Waste not, want not

Another innovation we’re really proud of is the ability for wastewater to be used in the production of plasterboard, including truck washing water, which will be collected and recycled back into the manufacturing process. This means no wastewater enters public drainage systems. 


Where the little things add up to big changes

Having more sustainable operations is about the big initiatives like recycling facilities, but also all of the other ways energy efficiency is integrated into daily operations which collectively add up to big changes.

We’ve introduced lots of other initiatives too, like new energy-efficient plasterboard driers and low energy LED lighting and daylight controls.  For the size and scale of our Tauranga plant, these changes add up to significant energy reductions, supporting our goal of a 30% carbon emission reduction by 2030.

We will also have one of the cleanest processes in the world thanks to the introduction of technology to reduce dust particles in the air through the use of a Wet Electrostatic Precipitator (WESP). The WESP is designed to remove any dust particles that do manage to pass through the filters before they exit the exhaust stack.

One of the only byproducts from our plasterboard production will be water vapour, which is the result of removing excess water when plasterboard is put through a drier. With natural gas being the main energy source for the site, we’ve also ensured options are in place to future-proof operations, with the ability to convert to other energy sources in the future.


Find out more

View more information on the new GIB® plasterboard Tauranga manufacturing and distribution facility or contact GIB® customer services 0800 475 475.