The environmental effort is and has long been one of the cornerstones in the Group’s work. The joint environmental policy is one of the most important documents for control. The policy is the foundation of the Group’s environmental management system, strategies and targets, audits and measures.
Already in 1995, the first environmental management system was certified. At the end of 2011, 99% of the employees in production units were working in accordance with the certified environmental management system, primarily ISO 14001:2008. At each production unit, there is an environmental coordinator.
The Group’s environmental goals are used to control, develop and monitor the environmental effort. Strategies to achieve the goals are included in the business plan. Since 2004, the Volvo Group has put an extra strong focus on energy reduction in its own production process. Energy consumption has since decreased by 46% per produced unit.
The energy-saving goal for 2010–2012 is divided into two parts:
• Continue the work with investigating the possibility of making the Group’s facilities carbon neutral.
• Standby loss, i.e. energy consumption during non-production hours, must decrease by 50% and an additional 15% energy-saving per produced unit by 2012, compared with 2008.
Focusing on energy-savings measures is good for both the environment and the Group’s financial results. A couple of years ago, when the Volvo Group launched the world’s first carbon-neutral plant, the primary reason was to reduce the environmental load, but it soon became quite clear that it was also a solid financial investment, which will generate significant cost savings in the long term.
All production plants must comply with the common minimum requirements pertaining to chemicals, energy consumption, emissions to air and water, waste management, environmental organization and improvement work. Since 1989, environmental audits have been conducted to ensure compliance with the environmental policy and in the event of acquisitions; a review is conducted of the company and properties to observe environmental factors and risks.
In 2011, 17 facilities in Sweden required permits. All have the necessary environmental permits and no permits needs to be renewed in 2012. The existence of contaminated land in our properties is documented annually. During 2011, no after-treatment of contaminated land was in progress on Volvo Group property in Sweden. During 2011, no spills were reported, no major environmental incidents occurred and no environmental disputes are ongoing.