Sustainable Development

Become a Model in the Promotion of Responsible Building

At Barrette Structural, the protection of the environment is a priority. Any organization that believes in a sustainable future for society must ensure the sustainability of its activities. Since we ourselves require a continuous supply of raw materials to pursue our operations, we have an obligation to do everything in our power to preserve the environment. By improving our environmental performance, we are also improving our present quality of life as well as that of generations to come.

Our commitment to the environment comes in the form of an action plan that advocates sustainable development by multiplying concrete efforts in all of our activities.
Through our environmental policy, we have made a formal commitment to our employees, customers and society as a whole to foster an eco-friendly culture. By raising awareness among all stakeholders of the importance of safeguarding the environment, we hope to become a model in the promotion of responsible building.

This environmental policy allows us to provide services that will account for all factors which could have an impact on people or the environment as well as offer products and services that are both sustainable and responsible.

Environmental Goals

Keenly aware of our social and environmental responsibilities, we have long aligned our activities with sustainable development practices in order to reduce our ecological footprint and minimize our impact on the environment. We now plan to step up the pursuit of this mission through the achievement of specific environmental goals:

Economic Responsible Activities

  • Promote economically responsible activities
  • Ensure that our economic activities adhere to sustainable development and environment-oriented principles
  • Do business with suppliers that apply eco-responsible practices

The 3R-D Approach: Recycle, Reuse, Reduce and Disposal

  • Reduce at the source, recycle or reuse to optimize the utilization of raw materials
  • Minimize water use and waste
  • Manage residual and hazardous materials effectively and responsibly, from purchase to disposal

Energy Efficient Consumption

  • Maximize energy efficiency and increase employee awareness of responsible energy use
  • Apply measures aimed at saving energy by favoring the purchase of energy-efficient equipment

Responsible Communication

  • Favour an active dialog with partners, employees and leaders
  • Foster business relations that promote sustainable development

Energy Conservation

In order to minimize our greenhouse gas emissions linked to our energy consumption, we are committed to using energy from renewable resources.

We acknowledge our responsibility towards society and are well aware of the impact that our activities exert on the environment. Since product quality and customer comfort are paramount at Barrette Structural, we are ever mindful of safeguarding the future of both.

Responsible energy management practices will be put in place based on an environmental perspective that’s oriented towards the use of renewable energy and strategic information.

The principle of energy efficiency requires the introduction of rigorous measures, which are essential to business:

  • Prioritize energy from the solar wall and continue implementation of clean energy throughout our plants
  • Anticipate energy losses by calculating fluctuations using information technology tools
  • Raise employee awareness regarding energy use
  • Set up an inter-plant collaboration network to share best practices
  • Promote the exchange of best practices between branches through active communication
  • Purchase certified energy-efficient goods whenever possible

All of these points will remain priorities with a view to preserving the environment as well as ensuring user comfort.

Water Conservation

We are determined to use our water resources efficiently by continuing to apply best practices. Moreover, we will continue to survey the water tables that are located near our facilities in order to ensure the protection of this valuable resource and manage it in a manner that is fully consistent with sustainable development practices.

Water is our collective heritage. Barrette Structural has designated a variety of actions aimed at minimizing waste, reducing its use in plants and increasing employee awareness as to the scarcity of this precious resource.

  • Actively promote the conscientious use of potable water among all users to elicit new behaviours
  • Integrate eco-friendly equipment and materials in plants to adequately meet water conservation and quality objectives
  • Increase the use of environmentally friendly cleaning products to reduce the amount of hazardous chemicals that are released into wastewater
  • Promote the internal use of reusable bottles to lower the production of Co2 caused by water consumption
  • Modify purchasing criteria to prioritize suppliers that make responsible use of water resources

We plan to maintain and continually enhance these measures aimed at favoring the preservation of watersheds and water tables in order to minimize the impacts of water usage and the resulting waste.

Reduction/Recycling of Waste

The recycling, reuse, reduction and disposal of waste materials have long formed part of our corporate values. We firmly believe that our carbon footprint can best be minimized through the responsible management of waste.

There is no question that waste management concerns everyone; public figures, economic players, associations and citizens alike play a crucial role in each step of the waste management process. Given that it’s such an important issue that affects the Quebec society as a whole, we’ve developed a residual materials recovery program that complies with current municipal legislation and is aimed at achieving recycling excellence as well further reducing the company’s overall ecological footprint.

Barrette Structural applies responsible and sustainable waste management measures based on the 3R-D approach: Recycle, Reuse, Reduction and Disposal. These include:

  • Complying with the objectives of the Quebec Residual Materials Management Policy by targeting an established recovery rate for plastics, fibers, wood and textiles
  • Reducing packaging materials at the source by taking this factor into account when choosing suppliers
  • Coming up with innovative ways to promote the reuse and recycling of residual materials before proceeding with their recovery and disposal
  • Implementing suitable recycling measures for all waste materials produced at the plant
  • Reducing and properly disposing of hazardous materials (including computer equipment, ink cartridges, batteries, etc.) to control and eliminate risks for users and the environment

By implementing these and other innovative actions, we wish to serve as a model for responsible waste management. Moreover, we are optimistic that in promoting the application of good practices in the area of residual materials management, it will have a snowball effect in companies across the province.

Green Procurement

In line with an environmentally responsible approach, Barrette Structural plans to continue applying goods and services purchasing criteria that comply with sustainable development principles.

Our concern for responsible management has led us to make ongoing improvements to our purchasing criteria in order to ensure the best interests of the environment and society as a whole. By rallying our suppliers to also take part in this commitment to acting responsibly, we are ensuring coherence between actions and words.

Following the integration of environmental considerations in the purchasing process, the company now makes buying decisions based on environmental and social criteria as well as cost.

  • Priority given to certified products, such as FSC or Energy Star
  • Favours the eco-efficient use of local resources and production, and the protection of fundamental labour rights recognized by the International Labour Organization (ILO)
  • Prioritizes the purchase of goods and services that apply ecological design and shipping principles
  • Favours products with less packaging and that are recyclable or made from recycled materials
  • Takes product disposal into account
  • Provides company buyers with a straightforward guide to green procurement

Such environmental considerations in the purchasing process will direct buyers and other key players towards the purchase of sustainable, reusable, recyclable, recycled and less polluting products that generate little waste and are in line with social standards.

Reduced Use and Sound Management of Hazardous Materials

We wish to limit the use of any and all dangerous products that can impact the environment.

Barrette Structural applies the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS), the main objective of which is to protect both our employees and the environment.
Since toxic and hazardous materials have the greatest negative effect on the environment, strict measures for the safe handling, storage and elimination of such products must be put in place by companies to avoid any type of contamination and health risks.

The following regulations concerning the management of hazardous materials, which are just a few of those already being applied by the company, are subject to constant review and updates:

  • Communicate information regarding product-related hazards. The main elements of WHMIS are warnings on labels, material safety data sheets (MSDA) and employee training.
  • Curb the use of hazardous, controlled or toxic materials by substituting equivalent but less harmful products or, where possible, natural or biodegradable products.
  • Safely recover, recycle and properly dispose of all hazardous waste in order to protect employees and the wider community.

Environmentally responsible waste management requires strict measures; an approach that we’ve applied from the start. We intend to be leader in eco-responsibility and plan to improve our practices year after year.