As the original manufacturer of linear drainage, Stormtech has had significant time to perfect their manufacturing processes since they began in 1989. Their humble roots and simple approach to product design came about as a result of their long-held focus on sustainability, which continues to be embedded within all of their practices.
As Stormtech’s managing director, Troy Creighton, says, “We were a very small hand-to-mouth business… We were inadvertently operating as a sustainable business.”
Stormtech’s local-minded and family-orientated company culture allowed them to establish proper connections with their town’s local community; a mindset they have maintained as they have grown. Starting out small, Stormtech was always cautious to pick materials that would allow them to avoid waste. Stormtech additionally offers a take-back scheme to ensure the lifespan of their products is a long as possible. For instance, the entire Slimline series was designed for disassembly, and only one tenth of one percent of the PVC used ends up in landfill. The rest can be recycled and used again and again. Building a reputation as a reliable business meant selecting materials that were built to last, such as their preferred use of 316 marine-grade stainless steel.
Offering such long-lasting choices, recycling materials wherever possible, and providing a 10-year warranty to back it up, Stormtech has been recognised by GreenTag as being the only drainage manufacturer with Gold streamlined Level A certification after its entire Slimline series was certified. This rating counts towards the Green Building Council of Australia’s (GBCA) Green Star credits.
GreenTag’s GreenRate system is designed to encourage a selection of low-impact of materials, with the GreenRate Level A rating signifying a 100 percent “sustainability factor”. Furthermore, GreenTag is the only product rating certification scheme approved by Australia’s foremost consultation and certification body for sustainable construction, the GBCA.
GreenTag’s status as Australia’s most respected third-party product certification body and its widespread adoption can be attributed to its consistent and rigorous testing standards. This has cumulated in the product’s EcoPOINT score and ultimate product rating.
An EcoPOINT score is determined by a number of factors, including the product’s efficiency, its health and ecotoxicity factors, promotion of biodiversity, its LCA score, greenhouse gas emissions, and social responsibility and labour conditions. With a Gold product rating across the entire Slimline series, Stormtech’s range of linear drains have established a standard of excellence for the entire building supply industry to follow.
All of these initiatives are designed to support a more sustainable building or scheme on the whole, with numerous products and practices working in tandem. Green Star-certified buildings produce 62 percent fewer greenhouse gas emissions than average Australian buildings, and consume less than half of the potable water than if they had simply been built to meet minimum industry requirements.
However, the production of Stormtech’s linear drains is not only motivated by their strong lifecycle assessment or bigger-picture contribution. On top of all that is a demonstrated commitment to social wellbeing – both within the company and their local community, as well as for their end-users.
Stormtech has committed to supporting local suppliers wherever possible. Currently, this means from around Nowra, where the company is now based. In addition to hiring locally, Stormtech looks to retain their trainees and apprentices. Furthermore, they have continued to engage with local community groups through financing, time, mentoring and sponsorship.
The Slimline series has been manufactured to ensure minimal maintenance is required. Effective pre-filtering minimises the frequency of needing to unblock drains, which often relies on strong chemicals to clear out effluent and other foreign bodies. These chemicals end up entering the ecosystem, which damages the health of our waterways and, ultimately, us.