Telenor Satellite has been Eco-Lighthouse / Miljøfyrtårn certified since 2010 and recently, we have received our fourth recertification! A sustainable future needs real action and a concerted effort, and we take our share of the responsibility by taking concrete sustainability measures. As an Eco-Lighthouse, we also contribute to achieving several of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
Sustainability and responsible business have been core values for Telenor Satellite for many years within the company itself, as well as externally with its partners and suppliers. In 2010 the company became Eco-Lighthouse (Miljøfyrtårn) certified and is proud to have been re-certified for the fourth time, proving its commitment to a sustainable future.
Telenor Satellite decided to apply for Eco-Lighthouse (Miljøfyrtårn) certification back in 2010 when we were looking at our sustainability goals in general and joining the scheme was a tool we used to become compliant. Over the coming years, the scheme has become more recognised, resulting in the majority of companies we work with also becoming certified.
Eco-Lighthouse (Miljøfyrtårn) began in Norway and in 2014 was approved by the Government followed by, in 2017, approval from the EU. Companies must match a set of Environmental Management System (EMS) criteria to be approved and must go through a re-certification process every three years.
Awareness is Key
Although a lot of significant sustainability improvements are reached through advancement in technology, Director Projects at Telenor Satellite, Tone Liljeberg, explained how awareness is vital in driving forward the company’s sustainability goals, backed up by design improvements, internal strategies and processes.
“It is really important that all stakeholders are aware of what we are trying to do and have sustainability and the environment in their focus. This goes from internally with our own employees, to the suppliers we work with and their sub-contractors This is not something we can do alone. Being Eco-Lighthouse certified requires us to have an open dialog with vendors to ensure they are focusing on the environment, power consumption, recyclables and so on.”
Better efficiency with technology advancements
One major advancement in technology that has brought energy savings has been the introduction of surface panel heating on our antennas. The surface heating replaced the older style of hot air heating to act as a method of de-icing when it snowed. The new surface heating technology works similarly to a heating blanket and is more efficient as it is in direct contact with the back of the antenna. This new advancement initially resulted in a significant reduction of 1,500 watts/m2 down to 350 watts/m2, but a final reduction, which brought consumption down to 250 watts/m2, was led by ‘smart people thinking smarter’, said Ms. Liljeberg.
“Temperature sensors allow us to just heat the individual areas of the antenna which are snow covered. So, big changes in technology have led to the first major reduction, but by having this core value and focus on our minds, we have been able to ask ourselves, ‘can we do this smarter?’ And so, we have developed it further and seen more reductions.”
Caption: De-icing of a gateway antenna at Telenor Satellite’s Nittedal Teleport. The new surface heating technology works similarly to a heating blanket and is more efficient as it is in direct contact with the back of the antenna.
Eco-friendly products and suppliers
Another measure we have put in place is increasing our use of ECO-certified suppliers and products we use for our canteen, cleaning and office supplies at Nittedal Teleport. In a review of the 30 largest suppliers to our Nittedal Teleport in 2021, a total of 71% were Eco-certified.
Impact of Covid
The Covid-19 pandemic of course saw a big reduction in our carbon footprint as it did for companies across the world. Telenor Satellite reported an all-time low for flights and general travel during the pandemic. Now that travel is opening up again, we are going to continue to carry out some meetings remotely and be selective over our travel needs.
Disposal of waste
Telenor Satellite ensures as much of its waste as possible is sorted and recycled, along with ensuring staff do not use single-use plastics in the office. The equipment we use is packaged in wood, so it can be recycled. In the canteen, everyone uses re-usable cups, cutlery and crockery. When suppliers attend the Nittedal site, we make sure they have containers close by for correct waste disposal.
We can all make a difference
While we are proud of the changes and reductions we have made to be more sustainable, improvements are always possible. Awareness is key for us and that is something we convey to all our stakeholders. We will not compromise on these values. The big changes will come with advancements in technology, but we can all work together to make the small changes significant.