The CO2 performance ladder
The CO2 Performance Ladder is a tool that helps companies reduce their emissions. Companies are encouraged to reduce CO2 because a higher step on the ladder results in a fictitious discount (award advantage) in the tendering process of clients. Within the business operations, in projects and in the chain, a great deal can still be gained in terms of energy savings, the efficient use of materials and sustainable energy. The aim of the ladder is (1) to encourage companies to know their own CO2 emissions – and those of their suppliers – and (2) to constantly look for new opportunities to reduce emissions as a result of their own operations and projects. The ladder then encourages companies (3) to actually implement these measures and (4) to share the acquired knowledge transparently and (5) to actively seek opportunities to further reduce emissions together with colleagues, knowledge institutions, social parties and governments (source www.skao.nl). Click HERE for the overview of CO2 emissions.
It is our policy to conduct our daily activities in the most environmentally friendly, effective, efficient, and economical manner. The starting point here is that the requirements and expectations agreed with the customer can be met at all times.
CO2 reduction through Innovation
Possible cost savings (energy savings) are considered within the operational management and projects, which means that CO2 emissions and possible fuel savings are also taken into account when investing in and building new machines.
Sterk has had two hydraulic cranes built to replace two obsolete cranes. The first machine was commissioned in 2018. The second in early 2020. During the design of the cranes, the latest systems were examined in order to meet the most recent emission requirements. For example, a start-stop system has been incorporated in the vibration hammers’ aggregate, so that the vibration hammers’ aggregate only operates during use. With the current cranes, the aggregate always keeps running, which consumes a lot of fuel unnecessarily. Furthermore, the cranes are equipped with two motors, a light motor to drive the systems of the crane itself, and a separate motor to drive the vibration hammer. For all work where the vibration hammer is not in use, the lighter (and therefore more economical) motor can be used. We have measured that the aggregate of the vibration hammer is only used for about half of the time in this type of crane.
Sterk is also working on a number of new developments in the field of completely new and innovative construction methods for soil and water retaining structures. One of the applicable criteria in this respect is reduction of the impact on the environment (less CO2 emissions due to less use of materials and less use of equipment). In 2017, tests were carried out with a prototype to further test the concept and the technique. We are currently in talks with various parties to bring this technique to market.
Another initiative where reduction plays a role is the so-called modal shift. Where land transport (lorries) is replaced by water transport. Together with the port-bound entrepreneurs in Drachten, an initiative has been launched to optimise the use of the waterway to Drachten. By jointly coordinating the inbound and outbound transport flows and, where possible, combining cargo from different companies, the use of trucks can be significantly reduced. For this initiative, we cooperate with:
- Port-bound entrepreneurs Smallingerland
- Municipality of Smallingerland
- Stenden NHL lectorate Green Logistics
- Top Dutch Logistics off road
In relation to the above-mentioned modal shift, we at Sterk are also working hard to upgrade the waterway to Drachten from class 4 to class 5. The CO2 emissions per tonne of cargo of a class 5 ship is significantly lower than that of a class 4 ship. There is also increased investment in sustainable propulsion technology in class 5 ships. The upgrade of the waterway is also related to the area development De Hege Warren near our location in Drachten. This is a peat meadow area which is subsiding considerably due to the lowering of the groundwater level. Together with the port-bound entrepreneurs, we are working hard to flood this area to prevent subsidence and the oxidation (a major source of CO2 emissions).