Getting momentum on sustainability
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Getting Momentum on Sustainability. Steve Lee United Group Limited. Getting Momentum with Sustainability. Steve Lee Group Manager HSSE. Getting momentum…. Big city lights…. Influences…. Risk: Climate Change. No Action Reasonable Action Substantial Effective Action Radical Action.

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Getting Momentum on Sustainability

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Getting Momentum on Sustainability

Steve LeeUnited Group Limited

Getting Momentum with Sustainability

Steve Lee

Group Manager HSSE

Getting momentum…

Big city lights….


Risk: Climate Change

  • No Action

  • Reasonable Action

  • Substantial Effective Action

  • Radical Action



Sustainable Development

To meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs."

United Nations World Commission On Environment & Development

Improving operating efficiencies

Reducing the company carbon (ecological) footprint i.e. reduce use of energy, materials, water, waste

Business imperative

Why integrate sustainability into the business?

  • Investment groups with increasing expectations

  • Compliance to current and emerging legislative requirements

  • Compliance to current and emerging company reporting requirements

  • Large company demand & competitors adopting progressively

  • Opportunities for product and service

  • Opportunities to improve internal efficiency

  • Potential for positive marketing influence

Business as usual…!

In the context of the businesses we are involved with…

  • Electricity use – eg lighting, fixed equipment, air conditioning, hot water

  • Fuel use – eg petroleum, diesel

  • Green house gas contribution - LPG gas, CO2,

  • Consumption – paper, air travel, bulb replacement, petrol, etc

  • Resource use – eg water,

  • Waste output reduction, recycling

  • Impact of ETS on prices of energy

  • Financial impact/increase – rising power & fuel costs,

  • Identify environmental impacts in current operational facilities.

Australian response so far…

  • Energy Efficiency Opportunity (EEO) Act (2006)Federal Govt – Dept focussed to improve their energy efficiency on top ASX high energy consuming businesses & industries using over 0.5 Petajoules (PJ) of energy (electricity & gas sources) per year. Required to evaluate & publicly report on cost effective energy saving opportunities.

  • National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting (NGER) Act (2007)Federal Govt – Dept of Climate Changefocussed on establishing a single, national system for reporting greenhouse gas emissions, abatement actions, and energy consumption and production by Australian Corporations from 1 July 2008.

  • Australian Emissions Trading Scheme Legislation in 2009focused on implementing ETS.

  • Reporting on Carbon Disclosure and Corporate ResponsibilityIncreasing demand by investment organisations requiring more information to accurately evaluate company non-financial related performance with respect to sustainable development and corporate governance.

Australian response so far…

  • Energy Efficiency Opportunity (EEO) Act (2006)

  • National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting (NGER) Act (2007).


0.50 PJ energy

(=125,000 T CO2 )


0.35 PJ energy


0.10 PJ energy

Progress to ETS

Reduce Australia’s GHG emissions by 60% by 2050

Sustainable Development

Direct & Indirect Effects

Direct effects of a Price of Carbon

Upstream Pressures

  • Suppliers will pass on cost of carbon

    • Materials – particularly those with high energy inputs such as cement, aluminium, steel

    • Electricity – liability of electricity producers, power rates increase

    • Fuel suppliers – potential increased costs from upstream liability

  • Certain materials may develop higher demand because of use in low emission activities

    • The development of the ethanol industry in Australia may push up the price of sugar

    • Potential increased competition for forest resources because of forest sink activities or biomass fuel source Increase price of timber

    • Switching to gas from coal as a higher energy source

    • Solar energy capturing materials,

Direct & Indirect Effects

Indirect effects of a Price of Carbon

Downstream Demands

  • Customers want products and services with lower costs. Carbon price impact on energy costs gives incentive to purchase low emissions products and services to avoid a carbon liability on your business.

  • Environmental sustainability demands

    • Rise of carbon neutral and emissions reduction programs in the corporate world

    • Companies that have made carbon neutral pledges include HSBC, Swiss Re, IAG and NewsCorp

    • Companies will increasingly want products and services that help reduce their carbon footprint

    • Large companies exerted pressure on their supply chain eg WalMart working with manufacturers and freight service providers

Carbon Management Strategy

Some steps to take a reasonable response in assessing the risks and opportunities and developing a carbon management strategy:

  • Measure and monitor carbon footprint – your energy usage

  • Ensure carbon data is independently audited

  • Forecast carbon growth and set reduction targets

  • Assign costs to abatement opportunities

  • Report carbon data internally and externally

  • Create a senior carbon management position

  • Track competitor’s responses

  • Price carbon into investment decisions

  • Identify and leverage new carbon opportunities (avoid green-wash)

  • Review progress on carbon targets

Progress to Date

Working Group established - June 2007

Energy assessment data for UGL operations – Nov 2007

UGL Sustainability Program Paper – Feb 2008

Intranet – internal communication on sustainability – March 2008

Sustainability Manager initiated – May 2008

Sustainability Program commenced – May 2008

Collating current UGL activity and initiate both short and long term actions

Key actions


  • Identify your exposure to Federal Govt progress with EEO and business impact from the ETS

  • Assess the impact of projected energy costs increases on your business (cost to operating/manufacturing and price increase products)

  • Carbon reduction is a business efficiency issue

  • Carbon Management Strategy a good process to use

  • Broaden the efficiency assessment to include other resources you use

  • Define participation with your business units with efficiency initiatives

  • Employees need communication and participation opportunities

  • Evaluate if there are new business opportunities and impacts

  • Public company communication - prepare to adopt a corporate reporting standard ie Global Reporting Index (GRI) or similar

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