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My personal view about sustainability can be described by the Indian saying "We have not inherited this world from our parents but borrowed it from our children."

 

I am pleased that sustainability in Virši is not just a trend that we have focused on in recent years. Sustainability has always been an integral part of Virši - from the efficient consumption of resources to the offering of various alternative products and services to our customers. The perspective of sustainability when planning the company's goals and strategy allows us to find solutions and benefits in the field of environmental, social and corporate governance.

 

Anrijs Tukulis, Virši Sustainability Project Manager

Sustainability workgroup

Sustainability workgroup

To promote the involvement of employees, at the beginning of 2023, a sustainability workgroup was established in Virši, in which more than 25 colleagues of Virši were involved, who are ready to solve various sustainability issues in addition to their direct duties.

 

The sustainability workgroup meets regularly, both in person and remotely, and visits other companies, where they exchange experiences on sustainability issues.

Virši sustainability topics

Sustainability of the business model

  • Development of alternative products and services for business diversification
  • Effective provision of the existing business model
  • Growing existing market segments
  • Effective use of investments and optimization of processes

Sustainable products

  • We pay attention to the impact of products and suppliers on the environment
  • Development of Virši coffee sustainability
  • Vegan and vegetarian products are available on the menu of the stations
  • Energy-efficient equipment
  • Pourable windshield fluid is available at almost half of Virši stations

Data security and customer privacy

  • IT system improvements, complying with the highest security requirements
  • We understand and comply with the principles of data protection 
  • We monitor that our partners comply with the data protection regulations of natural persons
  • We educate colleagues about practical issues of natural person data protection

Business ethics

  • Implementation of the Code of Ethics
  • Implemented policies to prevent conflicts of interest and corruption risks
  • Stopped cooperation with Russia and Belarus, as well as provided support to Ukraine and its citizens
  • Implemented risk management procedure

Dialogue and work with stakeholders

  • Association Solar energy for Latvia - we are one of the founders
  • We consider the opinions of the involved parties when improving the processes
  • Support for local communities and initiatives
  • We involve partners in our initiatives
  • Providing regular feedback

ESG reviews

Find out more

Renewable energy resources

Renewable electricity produced in Latvia

Renewable electricity produced in Latvia

The sun, as a renewable and sustainable source of energy, makes it possible to take real steps towards achieving the goals of climate neutrality and strengthening energy independence. We have a clear vision and a developed plan for the active implementation of solar energy solutions in the coming years.

 

We are investing in solar panels, and currently about half of the Virši stations and our office in Aizkraukle are equipped with them, which allows us to produce part of the electricity needed for self-consumption on site, while the rest of the electricity is purchased from Latvian renewable electricity producers since the beginning of 2023. The power of the solar panels installed has exceeded 500 kW, and in 2024 we plan to continue installing solar panels on both new and existing stations.

Climate change (reducing GHG emissions)

Development of the electric charging network

Development of the electric charging network

Actively developing a network of various alternative fuels, Virši opened its first electric car charging station in Krustpils in May 2022 and in September 2022 Virši signed an agreement with the European Executive Agency for Climate, Infrastructure and Environment, becoming the first AFIF support agreement in the European Union.

 

Within the framework of the contract, 28 connection points with a charging capacity of at least 150 kW will be installed at 20 Virši stations. After the conclusion of this project, Virši will continue to place electric car charging stations of various capacities both in the network of Virši stations and at partners. At the end of 2023, Virši had built 20 electric car charging stations with 44 connection points located in 14 Virši stations.

 

 

CNG or compressed natural gas

CNG or compressed natural gas

Currently, CNG is the most optimal available solution for reducing harmful emissions caused by heavy trucks, therefore the development of the CNG network helps Latvia achieve the goal of reducing the number of harmful emissions in the transport segment. The strategic goal of Viši in the coming years is the production of biomethane, which will allow this renewable gas to be integrated into the transport sector as well.

 

Looking for ways to reduce the number of harmful emissions in Virši, a pilot project was carried out in 2021, within the framework of which one of the fuel trucks with a diesel engine used in logistics was converted into a diesel/CNG hybrid.

 

Now, CNG-powered cars are actively used in Virši in all segments - heavy, light trucks and cars. Virši continues to actively invest and promote the availability of compressed natural gas (CNG) in the market, also developing a slow CNG filling station, unprecedented in Latvia, in the territory of the Daugavpils bus park.

Sustainable products

Virši coffee

Virši coffee

The story of Virši coffee begins thousands of kilometers beyond the borders of Latvia - in Brazil and Colombia. Virši coffee beans are purchased from the Veloso family plantation in Brazil and are roasted according to a special recipe at the Rocket Bean Roastery right here in Riga.

 

Freshly roasted coffee is delivered to every station in the Virši network at least once every two weeks. When producing Virši coffee, we take care of quality and that cultivation, transportation and preparation leave as little impact on the environment as possible. Virši coffee is Rainforest Alliance certified.

 

The implementation of circular economy principles has always been essential in Virši because it allows not only to reduce the amount of waste and excess consumption, but also to provide financial benefits to us as a company, as well as to our customers.

Implementation of circular economy principles

Customers receive a permanent 25% discount on the purchase of coffee drinks if it is refilled in their own mug.
Pourable windshield fluid

Pourable windshield fluid

For more than 5 years, the Virši network has available pourable windshield fluid, which allows you to easily fill the desired amount without using additional plastic packaging, and windshield fluid is not mixed with dye. Now, almost half of Virši stations have pourable windshield fluid available. Pour just as much as you need, and there will be one less plastic bottle in the world.

Energy management

Energy management

Since 2015, we have been analyzing our operations and planning an investment strategy according to the ISO 50001 energy management standard. It allows us to evaluate the company's energy consumption and provides a standardized approach to data analysis.

 

In 2021, Virši also obtained the ISO 14001 certificate, which confirms that environmental requirements at the highest level meet the requirements of regulatory acts, and an integrated approach to pollution prevention and control is being developed.