The LEGO Group and Sustainability

The LEGO Group and Sustainability

David Aubrey, Staff Writer

In the 21st century, sustainability is becoming increasingly important. Many companies are trying to reduce waste, CO2 emissions, and in general, trying to become sustainable. One of the companies/groups making that effort is the well known toy company, LEGO. Here to comment is Greg, from The LEGO Group®️.


Q: What are some changes that LEGO is taking in order to support their hope to become more sustainable?

A: On September 15, the LEGO Group launched our sustainability 2022 plan. Even though we’ve made significant progress for our environmental sustainability and social responsibility ambition for the last few years, consumers, legislators, and partners are expecting more action and impact from companies to maintain their quote “right to play” in business. Therefore in September, we will announce our stepping up our ambition level and investment in sustainability as we announce a $400 million commitment over 3 years from 2020-2022. Part of the way of that $400 million is going to be spent is we will invest what’s needed to achieve our targets and to have a positive impact on the planet and society. This will include ongoing costs and long-term investments.

Q: I know that the LEGO plant elements are made of sugarcane based plastic. Will all of the LEGO bricks be made out of this new sugarcane plastic?

A: That one I am not positive about. One of the things with those plastic plant elements, is that there’s a certain amount of flexibility to them. For instance the LEGO Ideas Tree House set. All of the plant elements in that set were made from this sugarcane plastic. Each one of those has a certain amount of flex to it, they’re not rigid parts like most LEGO bricks.

Q: Will all of the LEGO sets include paper packaging?

A: Eventually, yes. We use hundreds of millions of bags in our packaging each year. By the end of 2025, we hope all bags in LEGO sets will be made from recyclable material.

Q: How are CO2 emissions being reduced in the factories and how are the factories becoming more sustainable?

A: By 2022, we want to be carbon neutral across our manufacturing operations. This will involve investing in efficiency measures to lower energy use and carbon emissions and investing in renewable energy across our sites. Reducing our emissions and improving our efficiency is our priority. Using carbon offsets is the last option, but we do expect to use them. We’re continually working to reduce the waste produced as part of the LEGO Group’s manufacturing operations. We’re also introducing waste tracking systems to help us find alternative ways to reduce or reuse some of the materials that currently end up in an energy from waste plant or landfill.

Q: Will LEGO replay be launched in other countries as well as just the United States?

A: We are using the pilot program in the United States to understand how to create the best possible brick donation program for those who love LEGO bricks. We’re planning to launch Replay in two more markets by the end of 2022.

Q: What would those markets be?

A: Doesn’t look right now that I have an answer to that question. I’m sorry, I don’t have an answer for you on that one.

Q: Is it actually possible for LEGO to go 100% sustainable?

A: The hardest part of that one right now, is finding that sustainable plastic, that rigid sustainable plastic that is going to give us the same quality of LEGO bricks. LEGO is all about quality, the motto is “Only the Best is Good Enough.” Until we find something that every bit is as good as what we now produce or even better, it is going to be tough to find that 100% sustainability. LEGO does do certain things, I think they operate one of the largest wind farms in Europe, just because they want to at least do what they can do to offset what they’re doing with plastics by doing something better for the environment in other areas.