IUCN and Kinnarps Sign Preferred Partner Agreement

17 April 2008 | News story

Kinnarps, Europe’s premier manufacturer of eco-friendly office furnishings has signed an agreement with IUCN to become a “Preferred Partner” for IUCN’s New Conservation Centre. By choosing Kinnarps, a family business with a long-standing environmental protection tradition, IUCN is setting a benchmark for sustainable office solutions.

Work on the new energy-saving IUCN Conservation Centre will start on June 16 2008 with a ground-breaking ceremony. It will be situated next to the present Headquarters in Gland, Switzerland and will serve as the Union’s core hub to cultivate alliances among the conservation community, government, private sector and society. 

New “green” IUCN offices will use a minimum of materials and aim to have 95% of energy consumption from renewable energy sources, primarily solar and geothermal. Balconies and adjustable blinds will help avoid overheating in summer and allow passive solar gain in winter, while taking advantage of natural light throughout the space.

One key objective for IUCN’s new Conservation Centre is to create a global showcase whereby the highest standards for ecological efficiency are met,” explains Mrs. Julia Marton-Lefèvre, IUCN’s Director General. “Working with partners such as Kinnarps who are committed to sustainable principles enables us to realize this vision at its fullest potential.” 

“A sustainable approach to the environment has always been a cornerstone for Kinnarps. That’s why its even more gratifying to be chosen as partner by an important global organization as IUCN. At the same time it will fuel our efforts to be even more sustainable in the future”, says Henry Jarlsson, CEO and president of the Kinnarps corporation, also son of the founders Jarl and Evy Andersson.

Winner of numerous environmental awards, Kinnarps office furnishings were selected for their stringent eco-friendly manufacturing practices, support of FSC certified wood and compliance with European environmental standards. Kinnarps strives to recycle all materials — those that cannot be recycled are used to recover energy. According to the agreemment the furniture will come at no cost for IUCN.

Together, Kinnarps and IUCN will promote the importance of green building to the business community. “Green design is a viable option for mitigating the impacts of climate change and we hope that businesses will readily adopt the sustainable products available today.” says Dr. Hans Friederich, Head of IUCN’s Strategic Partnerships. “Climate change is our greatest challenge of the 21c and deploying green building solutions is one tangible step all business can take right now.”

IUCN has enlisted a small group of Preferred Partners who are leading their sector in various aspects of sustainable design and construction to support their green Conservation Centre. These partners include Holcim, Philips, Precious Woods, Kinnarps and others. The building is scheduled for completion in 2010.

About Kinnarps

Kinnarps is Europe's 3rd largest office furniture manufacturer with offices in the UK, Scotland and headquarters in Sweden. The eco-friendly manufacturer is a family business founded over 60 years ago in the unspoiled Scandinavian countryside, in the small village of Kinnarp in Sweden. All materials Kinnarps uses are produced with a minimum impact on nature and the wood is FSC-certified. Clients of the Swedish manufacturer include a wide range of private companies, public insitutions and international agencies. 

About IUCN

IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature), is the world’s largest and most important conservation network. The Union brings together 82 states, 111 government agencies, more than 800 non-governmental organizations (NGO’s) and approximately 10,000 scientists and experts from 181 countries in a unique worldwide partnership.

The Union’s mission is to influence, encourage and assist societies throughout the world to conserve the integrity and diversity of nature and to ensure that any use of natural resources is equitable and ecologically sustainable.

IUCN is a multicultural, multilingual organization with 1000 staff located in 62 countries. Its headquarters are in Gland, Switzerland.