Environment

Climate

Empower’s efforts to reduce CO2 emissions yielded results in 2018.

Due to the nature of the work, a large share of the company’s CO2 emissions is generated by traffic. For this reason, Empower has especially monitored the development of the emission levels of vehicles used in production for several years now. The emissions target set for vehicles used in production for 2018 was reached towards the end of the year when Empower’s CO2 emissions per vehicle were 180 g per kilometer.

The average emissions of Empower’s vehicles has continued to decline significantly in recent years and the target is to keep on reducing CO2 emissions in 2019, too. In the coming year, the CO2 emissions target is determined in relation to turnover and the aim is to reduce emissions by 10%. Another target is to update the electricity agreements in all of the company’s own properties, and in as many rental properties as possible, to use CO2-free electricity from renewable sources. 

CO2 emissions target reached

In 2018, Empower had nearly 400 vehicles used in production. That year, the company’s fleet was renewed actively and old vehicles were replaced with lower-emission alternatives. Emissions have also been reduced by car manufacturers themselves as well as by external requirements set for them, reducing emissions in new car models.

WWF’s climate work as the recipient of the 20th anniversary donation

Empower’s 20th anniversary in December 2018 was celebrated by making donations to causes chosen by the personnel. One of the most popular causes in the personnel’s vote was WWF’s climate work, which was considered particularly important and urgent.  

The aim of WWF’s climate work is to stop climate change and to prevent the risks it causes to humans and the environment. The main goal is to limit climate warming to less than 1.5 degrees. To reach this goal, the increase of global greenhouse emissions must be stopped and turned to a steeply downward path as soon as possible. 

Empower’s personnel strongly supports the visibility of climate matters and sustainability in the company’s operations. When making the donation decision, it was emphasized that our business operations should be solidly based on fostering values that are essential for the environment. In 2018, Empower specified environmental sustainability targets in further detail and development work will continue in 2019, too.

Circular economy

At Empower, circular economy plays a key role in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.

In 2018, Empower’s sustainability program was launched and Empower recognized the UN’s five Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that the company is committed to promoting in its operations.  

“One of the goals is to ensure responsible consumption, which is monitored with the recycling percentage, among other means. In 2019, our target is to achieve an 80% recycling rate. We continue our work to integrate the concept of circular economy into our business processes – we have succeeded in this in our digitality-based products, for instance,” says Vesa Rapo, Head of HSE at Empower. 

This approach is supported by the circular economy model that is based on a comprehensive philosophy of product and raw material life cycles. The aim is to keep materials circulating for as long as possible to preserve their value and to reduce their negative environmental impact.

More efficient recycling with the circular economy model

The appropriate sorting and recycling of waste is a natural part of Empower’s operations. For instance, all Connectivity sites collect construction waste generated on their construction sites and ensure, on behalf of our customer Telia, that waste is processed appropriately. The waste is delivered to Kuusakoski for recycling. Kuusakoski unloads the waste and waste volumes are reported by category to Empower and Telia.  

The purpose of sorting is to increase waste recovery and reduce the negative environmental and health effects that would result if waste was disposed of inappropriately. Waste collected from the field and delivered to Kuusakoski includes waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE), metals, wood materials, construction and cable waste and industrial batteries.  

External and internal waste management requirements serve as a guideline in recycling.  

– The key waste management requirements originate from the Waste Act and the Government Decree on Waste. In addition to them, Empower’s own instructions and our partners’ quality management systems control the realization of sustainability. A key principle for Empower is that waste will no longer be delivered to a landfill; instead, the aim is to recycle all waste generated by our operations, says Hannu Jaakkola, Account Manager at Empower.