A greener future
KAEFER people prove their commitment to our shared environment every day. In 2020, when a KAEFER team in Australia conducted their Toolbox meetings outside to comply with COVID-19 social distancing measures and noticed waste which had been washed up on a nearby beach, they immediately took responsibility for collecting and correctly disposing of 14 bags of plastic bottles and old fishing line. Peru’s KAEFER KOSTEC team also helped clean the world’s beaches, joining the country’s largest beach clean-up initiative in 2020 and taking responsibility for Las Sombrillas beach in Barranco-Lima.
Our commitment to the environment is not solely a matter of individual initiatives, however. That’s why KAEFER began systematically measuring the company’s carbon footprint in 2020 – detailed analysis was carried at HQ, in Norway and in Brazil with the roll out due to continue around the world in 2021 and 2022 – and why KAEFER launched a global Environmental Policy in November 2020, formalising our determination to make a meaningful contribution to the protection of our shared environment.
Working for a sustainable and energy efficient future
For more than 100 years, KAEFER has pioneered new ways of assisting in the production, storage and distribution of energy. Our expertise means we can play an important role in mitigating the impact of the climate crisis, ensuring that our children – and theirs – inherit a liveable world and a prosperous future.
We help our clients reduce energy waste – and encourage our staff to do the same. Internally as well as externally, KAEFER attaches high importance to environmental protection and green initiatives, and actively campaigns for the introduction of measures that will reduce carbon emissions. In 2020, together with the CEO’s of more than 180 European businesses, KAEFER CEO’s Dr. R. Gärber and S.E. Hansen co-signed an open letter to the European Commission urging it to increase the EU emissions reduction target from 40% by 2030 to at least 55% - based on emissions levels in 1990.
The new target of 55% was agreed by the EU Parliament and member states in April 2021 as part of Europe’s new Green Deal and KAEFER is already helping to make it a reality – in part through advocating for more efficient insulation in industry.
A greener future – Energy Audits and TIPCHECK Training
As the financial costs of carbon emissions increase for our customers, so demand for our market-leading Energy Audit service continues to grow. KAEFER’s team of professional auditors use state-of-the-art technology to analyse insulation measures throughout a plant, document energy loss, and advise on cost-effective, efficient, and sustainable solutions.
In 2020, KAEFER welcomed another 11 KAEFER TIPCHECK engineers, ambassadors and TBI-inspectors to the team. Determined to share our expertise more widely, the Corporate Innovation & Technical Excellence department also hosted a week-long European Industrial Insulation Foundation (EiiF) TIPCHECK training event in January 2020, during which 22 participants from ten companies and nine different countries learned how to perform an energy audit according to TIPCHECK standards.
PICC – another milestone reached in the fight against Climate Change
KAEFER’s commitment to increasing efficiency in energy generation plants extends beyond insulation and into the development of new, green technologies such as PICC (Power Induced Catalytic Combustor) – an innovative new gas turbine concept enabling the efficient conversion of highly climate-damaging gases into electrical and thermal energy.
"This technology could represent a key-breakthrough in recycling waste plastics, open up new markets such as the recycling of rubber or plastic waste, and lead to new ‘green technology’ business opportunities for KAEFER.” Andreas Pöppinghaus, Head of the Corporate Competence Center Renewable Energies.
Waste Management – the 3 Rs at KAEFER
The elimination of waste is a cause close to KAEFER’s heart, so it should come as no surprise that the company teamed up with Bremen’s City Cleaning Authority in 2020 to support their campaign against waste on the streets. The Authority collects between 60 and 80 bags of illegally dumped rubbish every day, fighting a constant battle against anti-social behaviour which pollutes our public spaces and makes them dangerous for children and animals.
Our engagement in Bremen is part of a more general trend extending throughout the KAEFER world, best summed up as the ‘3 Rs’ – Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. In Thailand, this was the title of a waste management awareness campaign – and in Saudi Arabia, the inspiration for a whole series of related initiatives, from reusing scrap wood to make safety barriers, to recycling paint cans as buckets and containers, and repurposing scaffolding materials as protective coverings for electrical panel boards. Management also banned the use of disposable cups and ran a campaign – inspired by the European Week for Waste Reduction – aimed at showing people how to reduce the invisible waste so often generated by the way we use everything from clothes to food and the internet.
In France, the KAEFER WANNER prefabrication workshop in Pompignac partnered with ELISE Atlantique to improve the sorting and processing of waste as part of its improved environmental and social policy. In Australia, a new program was launched to recycle paint thinners, and in Canada a nominated member of staff is now in charge of recycling bottles each week. Canada levies a deposit on bottles to encourage recycling and all the money raised during 2020 went towards an employee social fund. In Germany, KAEFER Industrie introduced a range of new measures to combat waste, from sorting metals and plastics on site, to working with suppliers on new ways of disposing of and recycling products such as mineral wool.
Raising awareness and promoting engagement
Energy Efficiency Roundtable
KAEFER recognise that we will not achieve our goals without taking a proactive approach which is why KAEFER joined the Energy Efficiency Roundtable.
World Environment Day 2020
Numerous initiatives took part in 2020 to mark World Environment Day and support the theme of “Saving Energy and Protecting Resources”.
Protecting biodiversity in Brazil
Our colleagues in Brazil work in an area of stunning natural beauty which is home to a thriving population of marmosets.
Cleaning up our coastline has never been more important. Click below to find out more about different acitivities at KAEFER.
Making the weather in renewable energy
The future of energy lies in generating reliable supplies from renewable sources – and we are determined to play our part. In Spain, for example, our team already has more than 5 years’ experience repairing and maintaining wind turbines on land and offshore, providing a complete range of services from cleaning and painting to complex structural repairs and the application of state-of-the-art protective technologies.
In addition to supporting the creation and maintenance of renewable energy infrastructure, multiple KAEFER entities are also beginning to exploit wind and solar power for their own energy requirements. In the UK, wind energy powers the workshop in Jarrow, Newcastle. In Germany, solar panels were installed on the roof of KAEFER HQ in Bremen, producing 12.37 MWh over the course of the year. In Brazil, a detailed study was carried out looking at the viability of installing solar panels at various facilities.
Supporting our ongoing commitment to sustainable initiatives, in 2020 KAEFER in Australia installed bifacial solar panels at the company’s largest Australian facility. Leveraging significant expertise in the research, engineering, design and construction of innovative solutions for the ‘cleantech’ market, the Renewables team conducted rigorous tests before opting for bifacial panels. This technology generates power from both sides of a solar panel to deliver more energy and improved durability. The new panels generated 140KW/month over the summer (saving approximately $7,000 AUD/month) while operating at 60% capacity. Savings are expected to rise significantly as the panels start operating at full capacity.