Sustainability in Action

Transformation at O-I’s Glass Plant in Zipaquira Increases Sustainability, Flexibility and Productivity

Jess Baker
 | Head of Content & Editorial Strategy, O-I Glass

O-I Glass recently completed a major transformation of its glass manufacturing site in Zipaquira, Colombia. The upgrades include additional energy-efficient furnace technology, improving the sustainability, flexibility, and productivity of the plant.  

Energy-Efficient Glass Manufacturing Technology

As part of the investment, Zipaquira is running a new furnace. The furnace incorporates oxy/fuel combustion and waste heat recovery technology — scalable technologies we’re implementing in our plants to improve energy efficiency and lower emissions as part of our sustainability strategy.  

In all, the glass-making technologies installed at Zipaquira:  

  • Lower CO2 emissions by up to 15% per ton produced on the new furnace 
  • Reduce NOX emissions by up to 50 % compared to a traditional air fuel fired furnace 
  • Enable a higher usage of recycled glass 


“This investment exemplifies O-I’s approach of using vision and innovation to transform how glass is made,” said Randy Burns, O-I Glass Chief Sustainability & Corporate Affairs Officer. “It continues our practice of intelligently applying technology to move closer to the equilibrium that sustainability represents. It is part of O-I’s commitment and strategy to achieve our stated 2030 target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent.” 

Creating Growth Opportunities for Customers & Community

Zipaquira is one of our largest plants in Latin America. The investments increase our flexibility to serve strategic customers and emerging segments in the food and beverage sector. 

The transformation enables further growth, not only in serving customers but also to the local economy. Approximately 100 additional new jobs were created in conjunction with the new furnace along with a larger number of indirect jobs in the region. 

“We are proud of our advancements in Zipaquira, upgrading the sustainability, technology innovation, safety, quality and productivity of our plant,” said Alvaro Suarez, O-I Country Group Executive for Andean Region. “This is creating new growth opportunities for our Company in line with our commercial strategy and the projected market growth, and will have a positive impact on community development.”  

The recent investment strengthens our commitment to sustainable glass manufacturing in Zipaquira. In 2020, the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), the Global Environment Fund (GEF) and Bogata’s Corporación Ambiental Empresarial (CAEM) awarded the Zipaquira plant in the Gold Category for energy efficiency management carried out within the framework of its Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Action for Climate Change (NAMA) industry project. 

The team also took a sustainable approach while expanding its high-tech silica sand plant. Protecting the environment, minimizing impact, and implementing restoration plans for the biotope were top of mind. The team also worked with external entities to optimize water resources in a closed circuit, reducing water consumption by 50%. 

Learn more about O-I’s commitment to sustainability by downloading our sustainability report. Get a glimpse of Zipaquira’s transformation in the video below.


Jess Baker
Jess Baker
Head of Content & Editorial Strategy, O-I Glass
Jess Baker loves to tell a good story. You've seen her work on The Weather Channel,, and She's a runner, a mom, and a die-hard Springsteen fan.
Thank you! Your subscription has been confirmed. You'll hear from us soon.