Without considering the environment and the world around us, financial strength and success are unattainable. And vice versa, the dependency is mutual. This is the core of sustainable development for Höganäs. Primarily, Höganäs contributes through our metal powders and the rationalisations they enable. Moreover, it is crucial that we continue to reduce our own environmental impact.
Höganäs’ offering stands up well on a market where forward-thinking customers see the opportunities in rationalising their consumption of energy and materials. Advanced components manufactured using powder metallurgy can accelerate the development of future energy systems. They could be electric motors and the distribution of renewable energy. In areas where there is a water shortage, specially developed powders can be used to purify groundwater.
Our PoP Centres, in Höganäs, Sweden and Pune, India, conduct research and development with our customers and their customers. Conscious selection of materials, optimised processes and more intelligent applications help create products with superior environmental qualities. One of the most recent innovations has been soft magnetic components used in electric car motors. The motors are lighter, more powerful, more energy efficient than alternatives.
Sustainability work in several areas
Our Group-wide Corporate Competence Centre coordinates Höganäs’ sustainability work. Our risk and sensitivity analysis indicates the following issues as especially relevant to Höganäs:
- More efficient energy consumption.
- Minimising residual products and waste.
- A Code of Conduct for suppliers.
More efficient energy consumption
Höganäs will reduce the energy consumption of manufacture by 10% by 2020, measured in kilowatt-hours per ton, with 2010 as the base year. The Höganäs Group’s energy strategy is based on the energy audits we conducted in 2009 and 2010. This strategy, whose implementation started in the year, covers activities including:
- Every regional management have appointed an energy manager.
- Höganäs’ Project Handbook, which governs product and process development, should contain a dedicated section on energy.
- All regions should have energy management systems.
- All regions should prepare a three-year plan for energy work, reported to Group Management.
Höganäs also accepts longer repayment times for investments in energy rationalisation, which means that we can take more actions.
Minimising residual products and waste
All the residual products from our manufacture are processed as by-products or waste. By-products are returned to our own production processes or sold on to customers. Residual products are processed as waste when this is justifiable environmentally. Our vision is not to generate any sectorspecific waste. Our primary strategies for achieving this are to:
- Maximise utilisation of resources in production and thus avoid wastage.
- Minimise residual product flows by closing processing stages and increasing the number of production cycles between maintenance stoppages, for example.
- Reduce waste volumes by finding and developing application segments for residual products internally or externally with or without prior processing.
A Code of Conduct for suppliers and a self-assessment system are the main tools for our dialogue about environment with our more than 9000 suppliers. Suppliers will be able to compare their own results with the standards of our Code of Conduct. This working method enables us to concentrate on effective improvement measures instead of a cumbersome control apparatus.