We Weld with Green Energy

Using the power of the sun to increase self-sufficiency: 478 new solar modules on the roof of GK Grünenfelder, producing up to 187.62 megawatt hours of sustainable electricity annually.
A new photovoltaic system is in operation on the roof of our production hall in Kriessern. This means that in future we will generate more than half of our annual electricity consumption ourselves.

As of recently, we not only manufacture high-quality transport solutions for road or rail, but also produce our own solar power. In January, a 900 square metre photovoltaic system was installed on the roof of one of the three factory buildings in Kriessern. This has been in operation since the beginning of February and ensures that our products are even greener. In the future, welding will be done here, with the power of the sun, among other things.

“We also share responsibility for protecting the environment in the long term,” says CFO Albert Grünenfelder. “Building a photovoltaic system was a logical step for us to do something for the energy transition ourselves.” And the investment pays off: the plant produces around 187.62 megawatt hours per year on average. This covers more than half of GK’s electricity consumption and corresponds to the energy needs of around 25 households per year. “We can significantly reduce energy costs, and at the same time make ourselves less dependent on fluctuating prices,” says Grünenfelder. The goal of the new system is to ensure the highest possible self-consumption of the electricity generated. To accomplish this, GK enlisted the help of three solar specialists from the Rhine Valley. Under the management of Elektrobüro AG, Kobler Energie AG and RHV Energietechnik AG, the roof was first renovated and then equipped with 478 solar modules.

Sustainability is a top priority

The family business places great value on sustainability. “We want to continue to promote the use of renewable technologies in our company.” Thus, further smaller projects are planned for the current year. Because Grünenfelder is convinced that the future belongs to renewable energies. For the commercial vehicle industry, the journey into the post-fossil future has already begun – and GK Grünenfelder is at the forefront of it. We have been producing vehicle superstructures for Hyundai’s hydrogen trucks since 2019 and were even the first certified manufacturer worldwide. In the meantime, many large transport and logistics companies are convinced of the benefits of hydrogen technology. As a result, almost 50 CO2-free trucks with the GK logo are already rolling along Swiss roads.

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