Caravanning and the responsible use of resources have always been closely linked. An intact and healthy natural environment is the most important prerequisite for unique leisure experiences — therefore, we see it as our duty to preserve it and actively protect it in our fight against climate change.
As an industry leader, we see it as our obligation to lead the way in reducing CO2 emissions and conserving natural resources. Our guiding principle is: avoid – reduce – compensate. We have already made good progress on our path to a CO2-free future:
Between 2018 and 2020, we were already able to more than halve CO2 emissions at our production sites in Europe.
By 2030 at the latest, we will have reduced our CO2 emissions by a further 50%.
By 2050 at the latest, we as a company are aiming to have a completely climate-neutral value chain.
On our path to climate neutrality, we offset our unavoidable CO2 emissions through certified projects with the highest quality standards.
Innovations such as alternative propulsion systems, lightweight construction, connected travel and autonomous motorhomes are our current research priorities for an environmentally friendly caravanning experience.
For thermodynamic reasons, the generation of compressed air creates heat as a byproduct, which is largely lost as waste. Through heat recovery, we can harness and utilize this energy at our sites – for heating, for example. Much like with a heat pump, the amount of usable energy (from compressed air and heat) could even be greater than the generated electrical energy.
Leak testing our vehicles is an integral part of our quality control process — to do this, we use large quantities of water. At our plant in Neustadt, Saxony, we use a treatment system to ensure that we can reuse this water again and again in a closed-loop system. This means that no more precious drinking water is wasted.
As a member of the German Development and Climate Alliance, we are only involved in compensation projects that are certified according to the “Gold Standard” or “Plan Vivo”. Certified projects demonstrably lead to a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, while also benefitting the local environment and helping to address the social concerns of the local population.
Access to clean drinking water is still not a matter of course in many parts of the world; that is why the Erwin Hymer Group supports the “Gold Standard” certified clean drinking water initiative in Laos. The project contributes to better health, saves rainforest from deforestation, and strengthens the local economy through the local production of ceramic water filters.
To date, about 30 percent of the population of 7 million in Laos, the only landlocked Asian country, does not have access to clean water. The consequences: particularly in rural areas, excessive land clearing takes place and people use fossil fuels to boil polluted surface water. If this is not a feasible option, many resort to drinking unfiltered water – a cause of many preventable diseases and high infant mortality rates.
Ceramic water filters provide an efficient solution — to date, over 70,000 have been produced in a manufacturing plant in Pakse using local materials. They can be used for years and are used in combination with large-volume, robust plastic containers. Every hour, a household can obtain about three to five liters of clean drinking water with this sustainable solution. Other positive outcomes: consumption of single-use plastic bottles is significantly reduced, and there is no longer any environmental or respiratory impact from the smoke emitted during the traditional boiling of water. Additionally, 80,000 tons of firewood are saved each year.
Protect wildlife, prevent deforestation and secure the land rights of the indigenous population: these are the targets of the sustainable climate protection project in the districts of Mbulu and Karatu in northern Tanzania. A key factor is the protection of the forest, which benefits the Hadza people, the Datooga pastoralist community, and the flora and fauna in equal measure.
The project is supported by the Erwin Hymer Group and certified according to the “Plan Vivo” standard, covering the region between the Yaeda Valley and the Ngorongoro Highlands, which is considered to be particularly culturally, socio-economically and ecologically valuable. However, the unique refuge for hundreds of bird and animal species is threatened by constant deforestation, as this land area is needed both for crop cultivation and as pastureland for cattle and goats.
The project focuses on monitoring the approved local land use plan. Patrols prevent illegal clearing and protect big game, which is also monitored with technology. In addition to ranger training, an overarching educational mission is also a core feature of the project: along with legal rights, management and finance training, the tasks also include distributing educational materials to schools and communities.
The Virunga Mountain Gorilla Project focuses on protecting the highly sensitive rainforest ecosystem and reducing uncontrolled logging. The Volcanoes National Park in the heart of Africa covers an area of 160 km², the size of the Principality of Liechtenstein, and is home to the rare mountain gorillas and other endangered species. These endangered mountain gorillas are in competition with the neighboring population: about 50,000 people use the surrounding area to obtain their firewood. Each household needs roughly twelve kilograms every day for cooking.
In order to significantly reduce the demand for wood, the project leaders, in close cooperation with NGOs and other partners, have developed an energy-efficient cooking stove that will be distributed in the Rwandan areas along the national park. The sturdy and simply designed cooking stove requires just four kilograms of wood for the same daily output – only a third of the original amount of wood. The stove is made of a mix of materials including loam, coffee husk scraps, clay and metal, and is produced sustainably in Rwanda.
There are considerable benefits to the local population. Decreasing wood demand also means less time spent acquiring the fuel; more efficient combustion also reduces harmful fumes that cause health issues such as eye irritation and respiratory disease. Ultimately, the gorillas also benefit in terms of health: less contact with the local population means lower risk of getting infected with life-threatening diseases.
Ich bin ein Tooltip.