Page 1

Digital transformation in the energy and infrastructure space APRIL 2019 www.csomagazine.com

CSR LEADERSHIP IN AnFAST FASHION inside look at the company’s sustainability journey

Innovation in climate action

TOP 10

Offshore wind farms

Sustainability transformation


FOREWORD

H

ello and welcome to the April

The energy industry has also become

edition of CSO magazine.

focused on decarbonisation. Marcus

Our cover star this month is Canadian retailer Ardene. Today’s retail landscape is facing a number of exciting challenges, yet the business has remained steadfast in its commitment to driving sustainable practices across its internal workforce and supply chain activities, as well as its corporate social responsibility efforts. From industry leaders to government led initiatives, demands for greener, safer and more sustainable spaces continues to grow. We spoke with Peter Russel, Senior Manager of Sustainability and Alen Postolka,

Lawrence speaks with BKW’s Thomas Zinniker to explore how technology is driving optimised and sustainable business operations. On top of this, we discover how The Public Investment Corporation (PIC), an asset management firm wholly owned by the government of the Republic of South Africa, is tackling sustainability, transparency, diversity and equality in a changing world. We also take a look at the top 10 offshore windfarms and key sustainability events set to occur throughout 2019.

District Energy Manager at The City

Enjoy the issue!

of Richmond, regarding how the city

Andrew Woods

has remained sustainable while

andrew.woods@bizclikmedia.com

leading with a corporate-first approach, embracing innovative technologies throughout its transformation journey.

w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com

03


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ANDREW WOODS MANAGING EDITOR

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CONTENTS

A journey toward CSR leadership in the fast fashion industry

12 26 AB Sugar: Global Minds, Local Champions

36 GARTNER ENERGY 2.0: THE RISE OF THE EMPOWERED CONSUMER


KINECT ENERGY GROUP

Digitally transforming the data warehouse

46 56 SOLTAGE

DISPLAYING SOLAR FLAIR THROUGH DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION

TOP 10

68 82

Largest offshore wind farms in the world

Events & Associations


CONTENTS


86

104

City of Richmond

BKW AG

122 Public Investment Corporation

164 Hyster


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APRIL 2019


A journey toward CSR leadership in the fast fashion industry WRIT TEN BY

HARRY MENE AR PRODUCED BY

CR AIG KILLINGBACK

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13


ARDENE

Canadian fashion retailer Ardene is on a journey to become a corporate social responsibility leader through greenhouse gas mapping, supply chain accountability and innovation

E

very business faces the constant challenge of remaining true to its core values, particularly when growing at

speed. Over the past 37 years, Canadian apparel retailer Ardene has grown from a single 500 sq ft 14

accessories and jewelry store in Montreal to a network of over 375 stores across North America and beyond. Since the company’s inception, Ardene has had one key principle in mind: to “do good business, while also doing good in the world.” Today, Ardene is working harder than ever to ensure it is a leader in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and sustainable supply chain practices. In addition to waste reduction strategies, community outreach initiatives and health and wellness programs for its employees, Ardene is currently embarking on an ambitious project to completely map its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, in order to more effectively understand the next phase of its sustainability journey. We spoke with representatives of Ardene’s CSR team to explore the company’s core APRIL 2019


15

sustainability goals: complete GHG mapping, increase supply chain accountability, product innovation and, most importantly, sharing Ardene’s message about a sustainable future. “As a family company with a young workforce, upholding ethical practices is part of our DNA; it is important for us to take care of our people, our customers, and of course the world we live in,” says a representative of Ardene’s CSR team. With all of the company’s sustainable initiatives rebranded under the name w w w.c so ma ga z in e. com


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CLICK TO WATCH : ‘ARDENE IS A FAMILY-OWNED CANADIAN VALUE FASHION RETAILER BASED IN MONTREAL, QUEBEC’ 17 Ardene Collective, the company’s CSR team is emphasizing the fact that sustainability “will not be a simple effort, but will require that we all continue to shift our frame of mind and daily thinking as one collective team”. Ardene organizes its sustainability initiatives into four pillars: People, which includes the wellness of its workforce, including extended partners; Planet, which covers recycling, waste, energy and water; Product, which deals with merchandise, packaging and supply chain efforts; and Policies, which includes compliance and certifications.

‘Sustainability will not be a simple effort, but will require that we all continue to shift our frame of mind and daily thinking as one collective team’ w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com


ARDENE

ARD E N E F O U N DAT I O N

The Ardene Foundation is the company’s dedicated charitable organization, dedicated to enacting its corporate social responsibility and community goals. To date, the foundation has donated over 1mn articles of clothing and footwear, and raised more than $4mn for non profits. 18

APRIL 2019


$4mn

Raised for non-profits

1mn

Articles of clothing and footwear donated

19

w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com


ARDENE

‘In areas of empowerment, poverty, education and health, we leverage the strength of our communities and try hard to shape a better world’

Congratulations to Ardene on your world class Sustainability Transformation and CSR efforts. We are proud to be your Partner.

Visit our Site


21 “Because of our presence and brand awareness, we have the opportunity to bring about big changes with regard to

chain to be more sustainable and efficient. “In the past it was very easy, especial-

sustainability,” says Ardene’s repre-

ly in the fashion world: you need it, you

sentative. “We already have programs

ship it. Today, one of our first thoughts

we’re proud of, like community engage-

is: ‘How can we do this better? How

ment, our garden, the end of single use

can we create fewer emissions from

plastic and Styrofoam, store hanger

our transportation?’” explains Ardene’s

re-use programs and more. But we’re

representative. “We’ve already scaled

ready to make an even bigger impact.”

back and consolidated all our ship-

These changes range from small-scale

ments in order to optimize the move-

steps, like replacing plastic water

ment of merchandise. Now our

bottles with boxed water in stores and

products move as directly as possible

offices, to large-scale operations like

from the source to the end store, and

analysing the company’s entire supply

we have dedicated weekly shipping w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com


ARDENE

‘Because of our footprint and brand awareness, we have the opportunity to bring about big changes’

22

reducing the company’s carbon emissions. In order to fully understand and further reduce its carbon footprint today, Ardene is mapping its GHG emissions according to the Greenhouse Gas Protocol, a set of standards days. Air freight has also been de-

employed by 90% of Fortune 500

creased tremendously through smarter

companies. Ardene believes that full

planning, as well as vessel shipments

knowledge of its supply chain will help

and trucking.” Furthermore, all of

combat the unsustainable elements

Ardene’s international shipments now

inherent in the apparel industry.

travel directly from the company’s vendors to their destinations, drastically APRIL 2019

Additionally, the company has partnered with the Sustainable Apparel


CLICK TO WATCH : ‘ARDENE FOUNDATION IS ARDENE’S DEDICATED CHARITY ORGANIZATION’ 23 Coalition (SAC), a global alliance of

there hasn’t been a lot of progress in

retailers, brands, suppliers, advocacy

the process of garment construction,

groups, labour unions and academics

which still tends to be very resource-

that aims to mitigate the environmental

and labour-intensive work. In the past,

impact of the industry. “This alliance

many companies didn’t have any social

can help us make real change in our

or environmental record of what

company and our supply chain. The

vendors overseas were doing. Now,

SAC offers tools, such as the HIGG

Ardene has systems in place to ensure

Index, that enable brands, retailers and

our factories are socially and environ-

facilities of all sizes – at every stage in

mentally compliant, and we continue to

their sustainability journey – to accu-

improve these through our partner-

rately measure and score a company or

ships with the SAC and others. We have

product’s sustainability performance,”

a code of conduct and conduct audits,”

says Ardene’s representative.

says Ardene’s representative. “Next,

“If you go back even a hundred years,

we’re looking at raw materials and w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com


ARDENE

4,500+

Approximate number of employees

1982

Year founded

375

Number of storesworldwide 24

packaging too. We have begun the

organizations both at home and abroad

process of product and packaging

to ensure our customers and staff

innovation, whether in the fabrics and

understand that giving back and doing

material choices we make or the way

good is a hands-on part of our culture.

we package goods.”

Whether it be in areas of empowerment,

Ardene also works to ensure its

poverty, education and health, we

positive impact on the world through

leverage the strength of our communi-

the Ardene Foundation, a division of the

ties and try hard to shape a better

brand dedicated to enacting positive

world,” says Ardene’s representative. In

change across the globe. Ardene has

select stores and through its site,

donated over 1mn units of apparel and

Ardene sells its line of biodegradable,

footwear and raised over CA$4mn for

eco-friendly shoes, which are made

various charitable organizations.

from antibacterial, moisture-wicking

“We work with multiple charitable APRIL 2019

and pesticide-free bamboo rayon. The


that turn used merchandise into raw material to be re-used, further decreasing waste. Looking back over the past decade, Ardene has made great strides along its sustainability journey. Looking forward to the future, the company is hitting the ground running. Ardene’s representative concludes: “Our sustainability and CSR efforts are an ongoing journey. In the short term, we will continue with our new and existing initiatives, the largest being our greenhouse gas emissions mapping and reduction, and our efforts in supply chain accountability, product innovacompany continues to grow its

tion and education. In the future, we

selection of sustainable products under

foresee more sustainable raw materials

the name Ardene Collective.

in our products, a closed loop through

Ardene recently launched a donation

increased upcycling initiatives, sustain-

box program in select stores, where

able building initiatives and more. We

customers can ensure gently used

are optimistic about the future.”

clothing and shoes avoid landfills. The business also continues its policy of refusing to incinerate post-season clothing and continually donates used products to charities at home and abroad. According to a CSR representative, the company’s next steps are to partner with upcycling organizations w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com

25


LEADERSHIP

26

AB Sugar: Global Minds, Local Champions WE SPEAK TO KATHARINE TEAGUE, HEAD OF ADVOCACY AT AB SUGAR, REGARDING ITS ESTENSIVE SUSTAINABILITY DRIVE WORLDWIDE WRITTEN BY

APRIL 2019

ANDRE W WOODS


27

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LEADERSHIP

W

hen it comes to sustainability, AB Sugar is quite clear about its objectives. “Our commitments are ambitious,” says CEO

Dr Mark Carr, “but represent the next step of our journey towards becoming the world’s leading sustainable sugar business.” Managing sustainability across such a large corporation can be as challenging as it is rewarding.

Spread across 10 territories with over 30,000 workers producing 4.5mn tonnes of sugar each year, AB Sugar – part of Associated British Foods PLC – is a massively challenging operation when it comes to implementing genuinely sustainable change. However, small changes at companies as large as 28

AB have dramatic effects across the end-to-end supply chain and associated communities. Katharine Teague is Head of Advocacy at AB Sugar and oversees the company’s strategy in this space. “From an AB Sugar perspective, focusing on sustainability is how we’ve always run our businesses,” explains Teague. “We’re always looking to do more with less. I think that’s a fair thing to say. We don’t talk about sustainability as a standalone factor. Instead, we look at sustainability through the framework that we’ve established around ‘Global Minds, Local Champions’ and we have broken it down into three pillars.”

PILLAR #1 The first pillar of AB’s sustainability strategy centres around both supporting rural economies and its commitment to building vibrant and diverse supply APRIL 2019


29

“One of the key areas AB is looking at concerns the mapping of data on crop growth and water usage” — Katharine Teague, Head of Advocacy at AB Sugar

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LEADERSHIP

30

chains. Through this pillar, AB aims to

AB is eager to bring smallholder

increase the prosperity of local commu-

farmers – through cooperatives,

nities and change the influence of its

associations or in block farms – into

supply chain from an agricultural base.

its supply chain to ensure that it has

“We’re looking at the kind of people we

sustainable cane for the future. Govern-

work with, whether they’re out-growers,

ments and international donors can

or distribution, logistics, services or

then partner with AB to create real

suppliers. How can we increase the

change on the ground, according to

prosperity of those people while at the

Teague. “We can then enable small-

same time partnering with them to make

holder farmers and work with them on

great changes in our supply chain and

improving their yields. The way that

ultimately in some of our locations? How

they’re farming now gives them greater

can we make sure our farms are the most

food security and a profit share from

effective and the most sustainable?”

the business. Those kinds of projects

APRIL 2019


31

“We wish to ensure that all our plastics within our supply chain will be reusable, recyclable, biodegradable and compostable” — Katharine Teague, Head of Advocacy at AB Sugar

at the base of the supply chain are exceedingly ambitious, very rewarding and show how our supply chains are changing. It’s not just about us, it’s also about the communities where we operate.” Each of AB’s businesses run as ‘local champions’, with a Managing Director who makes local decisions around what works for their market, customers and supply chain in the long-term. “Dealing with an issue like modern slavery requires cultural understanding,” Teague explains. “We’ve come to a point now after nearly five years of working with international w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com


LEADERSHIP

donors, experts and INGOs where we’ve established land champions in each business. Alongside this, we have worked with our communities to make sure they understand what land is and that they have the right to own it. In Mozambique, there are 1,200 people who own land where they didn’t three years ago.”

PILLAR #2 The second pillar of AB’s sustainability strategy is concerned with nurturing thriving and healthy communi32

ties. AB and Teague are obviously aware of recent scientific and public discourse regarding the effects of sugar and rising levels of obesity, but they’re not avoiding the elephant in the room. “We are deeply understanding of the fact that we need to educate around our ingredient so there is an understanding of diet, the wider obesity crisis and the complexity that sits around that and our ingredients,” says Teague. “We’ve made a commitment to educate 25mn people by 2030. We have a big footprint in Africa where our businesses there provide healthcare, education, schools and clinics.” APRIL 2019


PILLAR #3 As for the third pillar in AB’s sustainability drive, the company is increasing its focus on using resources responsibly. Its sustainability strategy aims to reduce its end-to-end supply chain water and CO2 footprint by 30%, while ensuring all plastic packaging is reusable, recyclable, biodegradable or compostable. “We have a large land footprint where we operate,” says Teague. “We use a lot of water and have factories which obviously emit CO2. One of the things we’re always looking to do is make sure we only use what is needed. We make sure we have really substantive conversations about reduction. We’re constantly looking at that balance and ensuring that at every point along our supply chain we are looking to reduce that impact. We’ve done a phenomenal job in each of our

1935

Year founded

32,000+

Approximate number of employees

factories because that’s where we’ve focused on reducing CO2 and our energy input, as well as how we use water.” One of the headline-grabbing news stories of recent times involved plastics in the ocean, and AB is keen to outline its efforts to reduce its reliance in this area. “We are a biomass,” says Teague. “We could be used to make plastics, which are obviously more sustainable w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com

33


LEADERSHIP

if you want to call it that, but we also

AB has a performance improvement

have plastic in our end-to-end supply

programme that looks at roughly 1600

chain from the cartons and bags we

projects at any one time and identifies

send out. We’re looking at how we

improvements from procurement

reduce that down and ensure that all

through to the detail changes in factories.

our plastics within our supply chain will

One of the key areas AB is looking at

be reusable, recyclable, biodegradable

concerns the mapping of data on crop

and compostable. We have conversa-

growth and water usage. “We create

tions with all our partners around that.”

cane in Illovo both in our own plantation

An initiative that Teague enthuses

34

and with our out-growers, whether

about relates to the company’s activities

large or small. The decision we took in

in Malawi and its innovation ‘in the field’.

Charlo, which is one of our very large

“AB’s sustainability strategy aims to reduce its end-to-end supply chain water and CO2 footprint by 30%” — Katharine Teague, Head of Advocacy at AB Sugar

APRIL 2019


operations in Africa, was to look at

Irrigation and the use of water in sub-

17,000 hectares of our estate before

Saharan Africa is obviously key. There

creating satellite-based data to deliver

is a lot less of it, but we still need water,

biweekly information and data that can

so we need to be conscious of how we

then be delivered through a remote

use it. That’s another example of where

cane management website and system.

we’re using technology to really change

This mapping improves agricultural

our boundaries and our thinking about

productivity and gives agronomic

our business.”

support to those in the field. This new system also helps us support our irrigation management, getting water to the right place at the right time.

35

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SMART CITIES

36

APRIL 2019


GARTNER ENERGY 2.0: THE RISE OF THE EMPOWERED CONSUMER Keith Harrison, Research Director at Gartner, details the changing relationship between the supplier and its consumer… WRITTEN BY

K EITH HARRISON

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37


SMART CITIES

T

he business of producing and supplying electrical power has evolved considerably during the past 30

years. During this period, utilities have undergone many disruptive developments.

Throughout these changes, one thing remained the same, power flowed from the utility to the consumer. However, the convergence of a number of different technology trends is ushering in the largest disruption in the energy market since national grids arrived on the scene — the ability for power to flow in multiple directions. 38

ADVANCES IN TECHNOLOGY The Internet of Things (IoT) and 4/5G networks enable many new devices to connect to the electricity network. These devices range from smart meters to electric vehicles, and from rooftop photovoltaic (PV) solar panels — typically in the range of 2 to 10 kilowatts (kW) —to energy storage battery solutions. Additionally, artificial intelligence (AI) and digital twins — a digital representation of a real-world entity or system — will make real-time models of generation and network assets possible. This will help network operators cope with a rise in the number of connected devices and the need to maintain a reliable supply. APRIL 2019


39

RISE OF THE EMPOWERED CONSUMER Technology has empowered consumers across a number of industries and the energy sector is no exception to this. Now, electric vehicles provide a ready-made mechanism for the storage of energy; IoT-enabled devices can measure and track the flow of energy more closely and efficiently; and the cost of homebased renewable energy has fallen significantly. In Germany for instance, the deployment of PV rooftop systems is the highest in the European Union (EU), with the installation price dropping from approximately â‚Ź4,700 per kW in 2006 to around â‚Ź1200 per kW in 2016. w w w.c so ma ga z in e. com


SMART CITIES

The blend of domestic power gen-

power grid of the future. Decentralisa-

eration and energy storage technolo-

tion of the energy sector is becoming

gies, such as rooftop PV and battery-

a very real possibility — as a single

based storage units (the size of a small

household, or small business, can be

fridge, but half as deep) in the garage,

a player in the energy market, and as

provides energy consumers with

many consumers become producers

a degree of independence from the

of energy.

grid. It also provides them with the ability to trade the power they generate.

RISE OF THE PROSUMER In this scenario, utilities will no longer

40

DECENTRALISATION

be at the centre of the relationship

However, this change brings big

between the producer, the consumer

questions to the table. Questions

and the regulator of electricity. In prac-

about who owns and pays for the

tice, these energy “prosumers” will

“TECHNOLOGY HAS EMPOWERED CONSUMERS ACROSS A NUMBER OF INDUSTRIES AND THE ENERGY SECTOR IS NO EXCEPTION TO THIS” — Keith Harrison, Research Director at Gartner

APRIL 2019


CLICK TO WATCH : ‘ARE YOU READY FOR GARTNER SUPPLY CHAIN EXECUTIVE CONFERENCE?’ 41 work with an aggregator — an intermediary that brings together the generation, storage assets and capabilities for many prosumers — to store and sell energy to others.

POLITICAL IMPACT This growing number of prosumers could have political implications in the coming years. Utilities may experience a drop in traditional commodity sale revenue, as less of the energy they produce is consumed by prosumers. The normal consumer, without access to generation facilities of their own, could w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com


SMART CITIES

42

find their utility bills intensifying

order to drive the investment required

considerably in order to meet

to upgrade networks.

the utilities’ operating costs and national subsidies.

HOW SHOULD UTILITIES RESPOND?

Undeniably, this could lead to new

In these changing circumstances,

regulations, as well as to the renation-

utilities should respond with a new

alisation of the electricity distribution

operating model: one that effectively

infrastructure in certain regions, in

integrates and orchestrates the

APRIL 2019


43

contribution of prosumer-owned

tency and to enable prosumer market

distributed energy sources into

arbitration.

new energy markets. In terms of energy technology,

NEW ENTRANTS

utilities need to recognise the opera-

Over the years, a moderate number

tional benefits of energy storage to

of large power producers and buyers

improve network performance and

have participated in wholesale power

reliability, to buffer renewable intermit-

markets. While it’s unlikely that a single w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com


SMART CITIES

44

“WHILE IT’S UNLIKELY THAT A SINGLE HOUSEHOLD WILL PARTICIPATE DIRECTLY IN THE ESTABLISHED CENTRALISED POWER MARKETS, THEY MAY DO SO INDIRECTLY THROUGH A THIRD PARTY OR AGGREGATOR” — Keith Harrison, Research Director at Gartner

APRIL 2019


household will participate directly in the established centralised power markets, they may do so indirectly through a third party or aggregator. This aggregator could be a utility, or a new entrant. In the longer term, this process could be managed and optimised by AI. Certain regions are also already utilising blockchain technology to create and operate new local energy trading markets, on top of existing physical networks. For example, Brooklyn Microgrid is developing a community-powered microgrid where participants can engage in a sustainable energy network and choose their preferred energy sources, locally. And in the Netherlands, Powerpeers, launched by Vattenfall, is a marketplace where customers can decide who they receive their energy from, and who they supply with their self-generated energy. This disruption is currently in its early stages, but the impact on the existing traditional and centralised electricity markets could be significant in the coming years.

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45


TECHNOLOGY

46

KINECT ENERGY GROUP

Digitally transforming the data warehouse NICK FRANCO, KINECT’S DIRECTOR OF SUSTAINABILITY SERVICES, DISCUSSES HOW THE COMPANY IS LEVERAGING MATURE, GREEN AND CUTTING EDGE SOLUTIONS FOR ITS CLIENTS HARRY MENE AR WRITTEN BY

APRIL 2019


47

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TECHNOLOGY

48

F

ounded in 2016, the Kinect

a consulting service that helps its

Energy Group is formed from

clients achieve its energy goals in both

the collective talents of Bergen

an environmentally sustainable, and

Energi, Nordisk Energipartner, U.S.

cost-effective manner. “Kinect is an

Energy Services, UX Energy, Beach

energy management company and our

Front Energy, and KTM, Inc. With

goal is to help our clients source

offices in the Americas, Europe,

electricity, natural gas, whatever fuel

Australia and Japan, Kinect is a global

they’re using, most cost-competitively,

force for green energy solutions.

and help them hedge it so they’re not

Combining data-driven solutions and

open to price fluctuations” explains

technical expertise with a personal

Nick Franco, Kinect’s Director of

one-on-one approach, Kinect delivers

Sustainability Services. We sat down

APRIL 2019


“W E SIT ON THE SAME SIDE OF THE TABLE WITH THE CUSTOMER TO CREATE COMPETITION AND IMPROVE TRANSPARENCY” — Nick Franco, Director of Sustainability Services, Kinect Energy Group

49

with Franco to talk about the ways

ships with “clients demanding more

Kinect is bringing diverse green energy

sustainability solutions, running the

solutions to its client base, how the

gamut from energy efficiency to

company is leveraging mature and

renewable energy to strategy develop-

cutting-edge technological solutions

ment carbon reporting - everything

for its clients, and how Kinect itself is

under the sun in terms of sustainability”.

staying green amidst rapid global

In and out of both public and private

expansion.

sectors, Franco spent 10 years working

Franco was Kinect’s first director of

for the Environmental Protection

sustainability. “The position didn’t

Agency, developing national enforce-

exist before I took it,” explains Franco,

ment strategies. “There were the

whose role involves managing relation-

companies who complied and then w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com


TECHNOLOGY

“A S A COMPANY, WE CONTINUE TO EXPAND AND GROW, BOTH ORGANICALLY AND THROUGH ACQUISITION. OUR GOAL IS TO BETTER SERVE OUR CLIENTS GLOBALLY” 50

— Nick Franco, Director of Sustainability Services, Kinect Energy Group

which was a supercomputer company for five years. I have experienced both in the government side and then the business side of things.” He pauses, momentarily, before another of the many strings to his bow leaps to mind. “And then, actually, I also worked for the Sierra Club, which is the largest environmental nonprofit here in the United States, for about a year.” With Kinect’s global client base spanning multiple industries in the public and private sectors, the Director of Sustainability Services role fits him to a tee.

SITUATIONAL SOLUTIONS there were the companies who

“It’s an important strategy to meet your

innovated their way out of having to

customer where they are in their

comply with environmental regulations.”

sustainability journey.” Kinect focuses

Franco remembers: “My goal was to go

on tailoring its services to client

help those companies and build up

companies with different levels of

those companies, the ones that were

sustainability infrastructure, from

being more innovative and not taking it

businesses starting along the road to

as a drag on business, but seeing it

reducing their carbon footprint, to

an opportunity to innovate and lead in

those already operating at a high

their industries.”

degree of sustainability. Regarding the

He notes that, prior to the public

former, Franco says, “I’ll do a seminar

sector, “I had worked in industry

for a client on the very basic ‘what is

before: I had worked at General Motors

a sustainability strategy?’, ‘How

for a while. I worked at Cray Research,

would you approach it?’ What are the

APRIL 2019


CLICK TO WATCH : ‘KINECT ENERGY GROUP’ 51

reporting methods?’, and how best

they using and what that is”, explains-

to get them moving.”

Franco. “With that step taken, you can

“Part of it is where the company is

then develop your carbon footprint.

starting. If they’ve got nothing, and

[Does the client] have goals around

they’re wanting to develop a strategy

renewable energy use, or carbon

then information gathering of the data

reduction, or energy efficiency? You

and the likes is kind of the key piece for

can then leverage that data to do any

them. We have an energy and data

number of things. On the efficiency

management system called Kinect

side, if they’re willing and able to put in

Online. The first step is just to get all of

their production information, then we

their data into that system.”

can show them per unit energy costs.”

Once Kinect collects and collates

On the other hand, companies with

a company’s data, they can provide the

a customer-facing business model

client “vision into how much energy are

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TECHNOLOGY

52

“IT’S AN IMPORTANT STRATEGY TO MEET YOUR CUSTOMER WHERE THEY ARE IN THEIR SUSTAINABILITY JOURNEY” — Nick Franco, Director of Sustainability Services, Kinect Energy Group APRIL 2019


CLICK TO WATCH : ‘KINECT ENERGY GROUP – XISOT’ 53

a sustainability strategy. In these cases,

ability strategy, or even one that is new

Kinect’s role centres more around “a very

to green solutions, Franco stresses

specific ask, like ‘we have a renewable

that “you go to the least efficient plant,

energy goal, how do I do that most

because you’re going to get more

cost-effectively in the way that’s going

reduction in energy use, more reduc-

to create the greatest brand value for

tion in carbon, but it’s also going to pay

the products?’”

off faster. The worst thing you can do is

“I have a client who’s got 15 plants,”

go to the highly efficient plant and try

says Franco. “We’ll rank those plants

and find a solution and they’re like ‘well,

based on the efficiency of production.

it doesn’t pay back. It doesn’t make any

Then we know which ones to attack

sense. I don’t want to do this.”

first in terms of doing an energy audit

Kinect excels at identifying exactly

and looking at upgrades.” With respect

how green energy solutions can be

to a client that already has a sustain-

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TECHNOLOGY

reducing its environmental impact with greater efficiencies and larger profits. “We’re very mindful of helping our clients manage the internal story. We want them to start out where there is the greatest opportunity,” Franco says. “Sustainability is top of mind for lots of folks, but the degree to which you can integrate it with something they’re already familiar with like hedging, or efficiency makes it an easier sell for them.” Kinect also deals with clients across 54

different industries that work in different ways. As examples, Franco picks out agriculture - where Kinect consults for several ethanol producers – and universities. “We work up a lot of companies that make ethanol,” says Franco. “We’ll have them look at how to

a sustainability plan, but many of them

lower their carbon footprint, because

have targets for when they’re going to

the lower the carbon footprint of the

be carbon neutral.” Then, speaking of

ethanol production, the more premium

the challenges inherent to the industry,

they can get for their product… But the

he says “a large university is some-

challenge with them is they’re very

times bigger than a small city. We have

price sensitive, so we help them

to help them figure out how to become

manage through that.” Moving on to

carbon neutral in a way that isn’t huge

universities, he notes that “they’re

cost for the university because they

much more forward thinking on

obviously don’t have a lot of money.”

sustainability. Not only do they have APRIL 2019

Overcoming diverse challenges


done in Australia so far, maybe two. So it’s a very emerging market. And you go to Japan and it’s not even on their radar there.” “So that’s kind of a difficulty,’’ he admits. “But that’s why our clients bring us in. There are differences across geographies in terms of the solutions available. We need to help them figure that out and what makes the most sense.” Wherever Kinect operates in the world, and whoever they serve, “we sit on the same side of the table with the customer to create competition and improve transparency,’’ says Franco. “As a company, we continue to expand and grow, both organically, and through acquisition. Our goal is to better serve our clients posed by a diverse client base is central

globally. We’ll continue to expand in

to Kinect’s strategy going forward.

Asia and other parts of the world

Franco recalls: “I recently spent some

where we’re not as strongly repre-

time in our Australian office and then in

sented right now. The ability to provide

Japan, and I think the difficulty is that

that kind of seamless solution across

the solution sets aren’t the same in

the globe for our clients – that’s how

different geographies. Lots of compa-

we’re pushing now.”

nies here in the US made the commitment of 100% renewable energy… that’s been going on here for years. I go to Australia and one project has been w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com

55


T R A N S P O R TAT I O N

SOLTAGE

56

DISPLAYING SOLAR FLAIR THROUGH DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION We spoke with Soltage CEO Jesse Grossman to learn how the independent renewable energy provider is innovating with its assets while making solar power more accessible through its involvement with Duke Energy’s Shared Solar Program WRITTEN BY

APRIL 2019

DAN BRIGHT MORE


57

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T R A N S P O R TAT I O N

S

oltage evolved from a startup idea in a business school graduate class at Yale to become a leading independent renewable

energy provider, with over 100 assets owned and managed across 14 states in the US. “We were

focused on starting a platform that could manage both the capital requirements and risk and experience profile needed to launch a solar Industrial Technologies Program (ITP) across America driving a good scale of megawatts,” recalls CEO Jesse Grossman, who explains how the company’s rapid expansion worked in tandem with the surge in corporate social responsibility initiatives seen across a variety of industry sectors. 58

“We are providing power to businesses, municipalities, utilities and corporations stacked across the US. And we’ve raised a number of private capital vehicles that we use to fund these assets where we’ve got large infrastructure investors, life companies, and pension funds now backing Soltage as a platform, and are interested in investing at scale into these assets.” Grossman notes the significant performance improvements of solar since Soltage emerged, combined with a decline in the cost of solar panels themselves, has allowed the company to broaden its customer reach. “When we started, costs were US$5 per watt but presently, we’re buying and installing solar panels for mid 30 cents per watt,” he reveals. “It means our effective delivered price on a kilowatt per hour (KW/hr) basis has gone down APRIL 2019


“The Shared Solar Program is emblematic of an important market and opportunity to expand the footprint of solar across the US ” — Jesse Grossman, CEO, Soltage 59

dramatically over the years, so we are able to compete not only in states where the cost of power is high, but also in states that have very low cost of power. And, in many regions, we compete with wholesale power with solar.” He also highlights advancements in the racking configuration of panels and technologies which allow Soltage to capture more solar lease sources on a given period of land. Meanwhile, innovations with inverters have seen Soltage improve performance with the ability to capture equivalent electricity that’s conditioned to flow through the grid across the infrastructure grid of the US while w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com


T R A N S P O R TAT I O N

“If front end work is done well on the engineering and design associated with those assets, they can turn into truly positive economic drivers in those areas by producing kilowatt hours” — Jesse Grossman, CEO, Soltage

enhancing reliability, operations and maintenance. Broadening the market is key for Soltage, exemplified by the company’s partnership with Duke Energy on its Shared Solar Program – an affordable renewable energy option for South Carolina. It’s available to all qualified Duke Energy Carolinas residential and non-residential customers including those who hold tax-exempt status, those who rent or live in multifamily housing, and those who may not otherwise have access to solar energy. “The Shared Solar Program is

60

emblematic of an important market and opportunity to expand the footprint of solar across the US,” says Grossman. “It speaks to community solar and the ability of a standalone solar asset. To be selling power not only to an entity in a neighbouring lot, but to appreciate the fact that kilowatt hours are commodities that can be available across a grid network. And so, if we put kilowatt hours in one part of the network, we actually can and should be able to sell kilowatt hours to an off-taker five, 10, 15 miles away that might be a resident or a commercial entity, owning the benefits of solar APRIL 2019


CLICK TO WATCH : ‘DUKE ENERGY AND SOLAR POWER’ 61

without actually being connected to

solar asset on its own property, on its

the solar asset.”

own real estate, but still have the ability

Grossman reflects that only around 8% of structures in the US are suitable

to sell that electricity and those kilowatt hours to eager consumers.”

for housing solar which can be due to

He cites markets across the US in

technical reasons or restrictions with

Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York,

site ownership conflicts. “Therefore, it

Illinois and California adopting and

wouldn’t make sense to put a multi-

benefiting from these programs where,

million-dollar investment on that

to enrol, participants pay an application

property itself,” he adds. “But a

fee and a one-time charge to reserve

regulatory opportunity has opened up

their share of the solar plant. Once

through these shared solar community

accepted, the customer will begin

programs, allowing companies like

seeing Shared Solar monthly credits

Soltage to make a large investment in a

based on solar production and a small w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com


T R A N S P O R TAT I O N

“As technology advances, we are rapidly developing to a point where we can not only supply kilowatt hours when the sun is shining, but store them during the day” — Jesse Grossman, CEO, Soltage 62

monthly per kilowatt subscription fee

able to blanket landfill in solar panels,

on their bill to support the operation of

or cover a Superfund site (a federal

their local solar facilities. For qualified

government program to fund the

low-income customers, companies like

clean-up of contaminated sites) in a

Duke Energy Carolinas will waive the

large solar asset. If front end work is

application cost and initial fees.

done well on the engineering and

Elsewhere, Soltage is pushing the

design associated with those assets,

sustainability envelope by installing

they can turn into truly positive

solar assets on repurposed landfill

economic drivers in those areas by

sites, predominantly in Delaware and

producing kilowatt hours.”

Massachusetts. “We’re using land that

Soltage have also been working with

doesn’t have good commercial

school districts in California, reveals

applications,” says Grossman. “We’re

Grossman. “We’ve been reviewing and

APRIL 2019


63

analysing their power consumption

take really do provide a positive return

over the years, and have put together a

on investment (ROI),” confirms

multi-asset installation in some charter

Grossman, adding that the increase in

schools in San Diego. This includes

the procurement of low-cost, renew-

ground mounted, parking lot and roof

able energy makes sense from both

mounted solar assets which have

profitability and supply chain risk

allowed for a great cost reduction and

management perspectives, while

savings.”

achieving carbon footprint reduction

Sustainability is an important part of

goals with solar. “It’s a key area for our

how Soltage can help its customers.

customers to be able to assess,” he

“We’re seeing sustainability linked with

continues. “Up and down their supply

profitability. Our corporate clients are

chain they are helping to push their

seeing the sustainable actions they

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T R A N S P O R TAT I O N

64

APRIL 2019


to, to share in the culture of sustainability around renewable energy and make a whole life-cycle analysis in terms of any products or commodities that are produced.” It’s that holistic view of inputs and outputs that Grossman maintains will ensure companies remain at the cutting edge to achieve sustainability goals while driving client retention and attracting investors keen to work with those who are leading in the space. Looking forward, Grossman is excited by the number of corporations pushing ahead with purchasing goals for renewable energy with considerable fanfare. These include marquee corporates, high street names like Home Depot, heavy industry player Nucor and Acushnet Golf (the parent company of Titleist). Meanwhile, he predicts that batteries and storage will become an increasingly important component of the equation: “As technology advances, we are rapidly developing to a point where we can not only supply kilowatt hours when the sun is shining, but we can also store those kilowatt hours during the day and then feed them onto the grid to sell to our customers at night. Frankly, that’s going to be a game changer.”

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65


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T O P 10

68

APRIL 2019


TOP 10

Largest offshore wind farms in the world WE DETAIL THE WORLD’S LARGEST OFFSHORE WIND FARMS BY TOTAL MEGAWATT CAPACITY, ACCORDING TO THE GUARDIAN WRITTEN BY

SOPHIE CHAPMAN

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T O P 10

10

70

Rampion 400MW Construction on the Rampion Offshore Wind Farm began in 2015, six years after planning for the project began. Located in the English Channel, off the coast of the county of Sussex, the farm is made up of 116 turbines, each with a capacity of 3.45MW. The turbines are 140m tall with a wing span of 112m in diameter. 27km of buried onshore cables are used for the farm, with the total length of inter-array cables reaching 144km. The energy created by Rampion is enough to power 350,000 homes and reduce approximately 600,000 tonnes of emissions per year.

APRIL 2019


=09

71

Veja Mate 402MW The Veja Mate was built in the North Sea near Germany’s coast and around 95km from Borkum island. 67 Siemens SWT-6.0-154 turbines make up the farm, each with a 6MW capacity and a rotor diameter of 154m. Highland Group, Siemens Financial Services and Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners sponsor the farm. Veja Mate can produce enough energy to power 400,000 homes in Germany per year. Throughout the farm’s lifetime, it should offset more than 18mn tonnes of CO2.

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T O P 10

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Dudgeon 402MW The Dudgeon Offshore Wind Farm similarly has 402MW of total capacity, made from 67 6MW wind farms. The site is 32km from Cromer, on the UK’s eastern coast. The project reached completion towards the end of 2017, costing £1.4bn (US$1.8bn). The farm is owned by Equinor, Masdar and China Resources (Holdings), and operated by Equinor. Dudgeon can produce enough power for 410,000 homes within the UK. Its Operations and Maintenance base can be found in Great Yarmouth, Norfolk.

APRIL 2019


07

73

Greater Gabbard 504MW £1.6bn ($2mn) was invested into the Greater Gabbard Offshore Wind Farm. The 140-turbine renewable energy park uses three 45km export cables to transfer enough energy onshore to power 530,000 homes. Around 100 jobs have been created for locals through the farm, which is located off of the UK’s Suffolk coast. “Greater Gabbard Offshore Wind Farm is a substantial operating asset contributing a significant amount of electricity to help meet consumer demand,” claims SSE, owner of Greater Gabbard. “It also further diversifies the UK energy portfolio with a carbon free electricity source in support of low carbon energy objectives.”

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T O P 10

06

74

Race Bank 573MW Owned by Ørsted, Macquarie Group and Sumitomo Corporation, the opening ceremony for the 573MW Race Bank wind farm was held in Grimsby, UK. “The wind farm is located off the North Norfolk coast and is operated from Ørsted’s East Coast Hub in Grimsby, the UK’s largest offshore wind Operations and Maintenance (O&M) base,” states Ørsted. The farm uses 91 Siemens Gamesa 6MW turbines, with many of the blades being made in a nearby factory in Hull, Yorkshire. “The project features a new way of carrying out offshore maintenance, using a state-of-the-art Service Operation Vessel (SOV) that remains offshore with technicians working shifts of 14 days on and 14 days off,” Ørsted adds. APRIL 2019


05

75

Gwynt y Môr 576MW Located off the North Wales coast, the 576MW capacity farm uses 160 turbines. Each turbine is around 150m in height and has a 3.6MW capacity. During the development of the project, approximately 134km of onshore cables were connected to the farm. Around 400,000 houses can be powered by Gwynt y Môr every year. The 80km farm is operated by Germany’s innogy, along with its partners Stadtwerke München, Siemens, and UK Green Investment bank.

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T O P 10

04

76

Gode I and II 582MW The Gode Wind I and II offshore farms were inaugurated by Ørsted (at the time DONG Energy) at the Danish Embassy in Berlin in 2017. The joint farms have a total of 97 turbines – with 55 in Gode I and 42 in Gode II – which could power 600,000 homes in Germany. “These large-scale projects are testament that offshore wind has become a reliable, predictable and cost-effective technology which will contribute significantly to Germany’s energy transition,” stated Samuel Leupold, member of DONG Energy’s Executive Committee and CEO of Wind Power, at the time of launch.

APRIL 2019


03

77

Gemini 600MW The Gemini Offshore Wind Park was developed to help reach the goals of ‘Paris 2050’, and can be found 85km from the coast of the Netherlands. The farm’s shareholders include Northland Power, Siemens FS, HVC, and ALTE LEIPZIGER/HALLESCHE. “This consortium of energy, technology, marine contracting and engineering combined both expertise and the assets needed for a project of such scale and relevance,” the Gemini site claims. €2.8bn ($3.16bn) was invested into the project, which can power 800,000 homes. The park also offers an app to see live wind speeds at the site.

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T O P 10

02 London Array 630MW London Array was launched by three energy firms – E.ON, Ørsted and Masdar – and the global investor, La Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec. The park is located 20km from the coast of Kent in the UK, and features 175 turbines. £1.8bn ($2.3bn) 78

was spent constructing the project. Each monopile foundation used for the farm is up to 68m long, 5.7m wide and weighs as much as 650 tonnes. The first 177 foundations for London Array were installed in May 2011, which was followed by the inauguration in Margate, on 4 July 2013.

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T O P 10

01 Walney Extension 659MW The Walney Extension offshore wind farm is in the Irish Sea, around 19km from Barrow-in-Furness in Cumbria, and is the largest offshore wind farm in the world. Almost 600,000 homes can be powered using the renewable energy generated by the farm. “This 80

massive feat of engineering was constructed on time and within budget, together with our partners PKA and PFA,” Ørsted claims. 87 turbines form the Walney Extension – 47 are MHI-Vestas 8.25 MW models and 40 are Siemens Gamesa 7 MW turbines. The project was inaugurated on 6 September last year, eight years after a lease was granted to extend the Walney Offshore Wind Farm by an additional 750MW and more than 145 sq. km of sea area.

APRIL 2019


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EVENTS & A S S O C I AT I O N S

The biggest industry events and conferences WRITTEN BY ANDREW WOODS from around the world

06–09 JUNE

82

23–25 APRIL

ASEAN Sustainable Energy Week (ASE) [ BITEC, BANGKOK, THAILAND ]

SEPA Utility Conference

This massive show expects 27,000

[ RANCHO MIRAGE, CA, USA ]

visitors, over 1,500 brands and over

This isn’t a trade show as such, but an

80 seminars tackling renewable energy

event where ‘utilities go to share with

sources and the latest technology in

other utilities on how they get things

this area. Wind and solar power are

done in a confidential, intimate environ-

among the many systems and programs

ment’. From issues like how to speed

featured and discussed along with

up your solar interconnection queues

thermal and waste-to-energy, hydro-

or how to best determine the locational

powered programs, bio-mass and other

value of your DER assets, there’s a util-

green technology. Renewable energy

ity expert at this conference who has

and energy efficiency clinics staffed by

the answer.

experts are also conducted at the show.

APRIL 2019


20–22 JUNE

Intersolar Europe 2019 [ MESSE MÜNCHEN, MUNICH, GERMANY ]

10–12 JULY

Intersolar Europe is the world’s leading

ees North America 2019

exhibition for the solar industry and its

[ CA, USA ]

partners and takes place annually at

Celebrating its tenth anniversary, Ees

the Messe München exhibition center

will welcome hundreds of exhibitors

in Munich, Germany. The event’s exhi­

and 15,000+ trade visitors. The confer-

bition and conference both focus on

ence features 40 sessions and 25

the areas of photovoltaics, solar ther-

workshops with more than 200 speak-

mal technologies, solar plants, as well

ers. With over 20 years of experience,

as grid infrastructure and solutions for

Intersolar brings together members of

the integration of renewable energy.

the solar industry from across the

Since being founded 26 years ago, Inter-

world’s most influential markets. Inter-

solar has become the most important

solar exhibitions and conferences are

industry platform for manufacturers,

also held in Munich, San Francisco,

suppliers, distributors, service provid-

Mumbai, Beijing and São Paulo.

83

ers and partners of the solar industry.

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EVENTS & A S S O C I AT I O N S

17–19 JULY

84

POWER-GEN & DistribuTECH Africa

28–30 AUGUST

[ SOUTH AFRICA ]

Intersolar South America 2019

With 3,000 attendees,

[ SÃO PAULO, BRAZIL ]

100+ speakers and 70+

With 11,500+ visitors, 1,500+ conference attendees

exhibitors, POWER-GEN

and 180 exhibitors, Intersolar has become the most

is Africa’s premier elec-

important platform for manufacturers, suppliers, dis-

tricity industry forum that

tributors, service providers, investors and partners

brings together interna-

of the solar industry. Intersolar South America takes

tional business leaders

place at the Expo Center Norte in São Paulo, Brazil

and technical experts

in August has a focus on the areas of photovolta-

committed to powering

ics, PV production technologies, energy storage

up a continent.

and solar thermal technologies.

APRIL 2019


11–15 DECEMBER

Intersolar India 13–14 SEPTEMBER

[ BOMBAY EXHIBITION CENTRE, MUMBAI ]

Offshore Wind Executive Summit

With events spanning four continents,

[ HOUSTON, TX, USA ]

exhibition for the solar industry and its

Bringing together decision makers from

partners. ‘Our objective is to increase

wind and offshore oil and gas, both from

the share of solar power in the energy

the US and Europe, the Offshore Wind

supply. By providing first-rate services,

Executive Summit looks at technology

our exhibitions and international confer-

innovation, design, foundations, vessels,

ences bring businesses, technologies

cabling and workforce skills. The sum-

and people from the most important

mit provides the forum to establish new

markets around the globe together. We

business relationships. Discussion

have 25 years of experiences in opening

points include project development,

up markets, providing specialist knowl-

important policy issues and supply

edge and creating links: Connecting

chain management.

Solar Business!”.

today Intersolar is the world’s leading

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86

Results-oriented leaders embracing technology to address climate threats WRIT TEN BY

SE AN GA LE A-PACE PRODUCED BY

CR AIG KILLINGBACK

APRIL 2019


87

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CITY OF RICHMOND

88

Mayor Malcolm Brodie of the City of Richmond, British Columbia, and City staff, Peter Russell, Senior Manager of Sustainability, and Alen Postolka, District Energy Manager, discuss how the City’s climate actions are transforming Richmond.

A

city with its sights firmly set on becoming a leader in the field of sustainability,

Richmond, British Columbia, has not only delivered outstanding results but also advanced a novel and replicable model for developing municipal district energy systems. Mayor Malcolm Brodie believes that taking action on climate change is vital due to Richmond’s location as an island city that is one metre above sea level. “Farmers started building dikes over 100 years ago and we’ve continued

APRIL 2019


89

that program. Since then, the City

Peter Russell, Senior Manager,

implemented a flood protection

Sustainability & District Energy.

strategy and a dike master plan to

“Our climate change mitigation work

respond to climate change impacts,”

is just as important as our work in

explains Brodie. “We’re one of the few

climate adaptation. We invest heavily

cities in our province that owns and

in our district energy program, now

operates a diking and drainage utility

bringing many benefits to our city.”

which provides secure funding for new capital projects.” “Every year, we collect money from

INTRODUCING OLD TECHNOLOGY IN AN EXPANDED CAPACITY

residents specifically for the utility

Richmond’s first investment in district

and that allows us to invest an average

energy, the Alexandra District Energy

of around US$13mn annually in

Utility, employs geo-exchange

infrastructure improvements,” adds

technology which uses the earth’s w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com


CITY OF RICHMOND

E XECU T I VE P RO FI LE

Malcolm Brodie, Mayor of Richmond

90

Malcolm Brodie has been a member of Richmond City Council since 1996. Following a by-election, he was sworn in as Mayor on October 29, 2001 and was re-elected in 2002, 2005, 2008, 2011, 2014, and most recently in October 2018. Mayor Brodie has represented Richmond on the Board of Directors of Metro Vancouver since taking office in 2001. He currently serves on their Water Committee, Performance & Audit Committee, Finance & Intergovernmental Committee, Mayors’ Committee, and the Industrial Lands Strategy Task Force. He has represented Metro Vancouver on the Municipal Finance Authority and the National Zero Waste Council, and is currently the Chair of both these organizations. He is also a member of the TransLink Council of Mayors. Before election to Council, Mayor Brodie was a practising lawyer and had a long record of service to Richmond in the volunteer community. In honor of his contributions and achievements in the community, Mayor Brodie is a recipient of the Commemorative Medal for the 125th Anniversary of the Confederation of Canada, the Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal, the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal, and the Canada 150th Anniversary Medal.

APRIL 2019


CLICK TO WATCH : ‘SUSTAINABILITY IN ACTION’ 91 geothermal energy from deep below

polyethylene pipe loop in the

the surface to provide domestic hot

boreholes,” says Postolka. “The water

water, space heating and cooling

is circulated through the loops with

services to buildings in the service

the water going through the ground,

area. With over 700 boreholes, the

extracting the heat.” You can find

City has utilized the technology on a

further information on how the

larger scale than ever before, affirms

geothermal system works here.

Alen Postolka, District Energy

www.luluislandenergy.ca/videos

Manager. “Geo-Exchange is a very

Richmond has now won 15 awards

simple technology and has existed

for its district energy work to date,

for over 30 years on a smaller scale.

including the 2016 System of the Year

We’ve implemented it in a much

award from the International District

bigger way. It works by drilling a

Energy Association for the work

borehole into the ground around 250

completed at the Alexandra District

feet deep and inserting high-density

Energy Utility. Richmond has led the w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com


CITY OF RICHMOND

92

“The Olympics opened many doors for the City, including the expansion of rapid transit in our city centre, now called the Canada Line.” — Malcolm Brodie, Mayor, City of Richmond

APRIL 2019


93

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way for other cities to follow in its

information and are all willing to

footsteps, says Russell. “Our awards

cooperate and support each other’s

are proof that we are doing the right

work. It’s led to us presenting our

thing, it’s important ‘third party

unique model at conferences and

validation’ that we are achieving the

being profiled in articles with interna-

City Council’s goals for climate action

tional distribution.”

and liveability. As a result of our success, we’ve experienced a high

EXPANDING DISTRICT ENERGY SERVICES

level of interest in our district energy

An early opportunity emerged to get

program from cities like Edmonton,

district energy planning work going in

Halifax and other utility companies.

Richmond’s City Centre. As a host city

We are now seeing those cities invest

for the 2010 Olympic Winter Games,

in similar technology,” says Russell.

the City committed to constructing a

“This is how cities work, we share

premier venue for the games: the 95

E XE CU T I VE PRO FI LE

Peter Russell is the Senior Manager, Sustainability and District Energy for the City of Richmond, B.C.; his team focuses on community, corporate and district energy programs and environmental protection. He is a trained environmental engineer, an award-winning professional planner and an experienced sustainability manager, having worked with the cities of Vancouver and Surrey, B.C., prior to Richmond. Russell also worked with cities across B.C. as a consulting planner for 10 years, developing sustainability, land-use and energy plans. Russell holds a Bachelor degree of applied science in environmental engineering and a Master degree in science in community and regional planning.

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CITY OF RICHMOND

Richmond Olympic Oval for speed skating events. To raise a portion of the funds to build the venue, the City leveraged a number of consolidated waterfront sites in 2006, selling some of the land to a multi-family residential developer, while retaining a major parcel in the centre on which to construct the Oval. Significant residual funds raised from the disposition were used to replenish and further grow the City’s land inventory. The City then entered into a Memorandum of Understanding 96

(MOU) with the developer to assess the viability of district energy in the area. “The Olympics opened many doors for the City, including the expansion of rapid transit in our city centre, now called the Canada Line,” says Brodie. “The Canada Line bolstered our City Centre Area Plan by creating a lot of interest for developing in our downtown; staff saw the opportunity to ‘get ahead’ of development and they presented the Council with a business case that included a focus on renewable energy and competitive customer rates.” This foundational work led to the establishment of the City’s 2nd district APRIL 2019


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E XECU T I VE P RO FI LE

Alen Postolka is the District Energy Manager with the Lulu Island Energy Company responsible for advancing the development of district energy systems in the City of Richmond, BC. He is a professional engineer, a certified energy manager and certified professional with 25 years of experience in mechanical engineering, building science and project management. Postolka holds degree a Bachelor of Science in mechanical engineering from the University of Zagreb.

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99

energy service area, now called the

“We were already expanding our

Oval Village District Energy Utility that

infrastructure in Alexandra District

provides space heating and hot water

Energy Utility system, which had

services. The City also established

examined different options for how to

the Lulu Island Energy Company as a

finance, manage and deliver expand-

wholly-owned municipal corporation

ed services in city centre. This work

to manage the all district energy

led to our senior management and

initiatives on behalf of the City. The

City Council to direct us to procure an

first building was connected in 2014

operating partner with the necessary

and the system now serves over

experience and resources,� explains

1.9mn sq ft buildings, which are

Postolka. “Following a rigorous

primarily multi-family residential.

procurement process, Corix Utilities w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com


CITY OF RICHMOND

$541mn Approximate revenue

1879

Year founded

2,250

Approximate number of employees

APRIL 2019


was selected and we started to negotiate and look at how they can help us to deliver this project,” added Postolka. Corix is a privately held corporation, principally owned by the British Columbia Investment Management Corp., with offices in Vancouver, B.C., and Wauwatosa, Wis. Both parties would enter into an MOU to define roles and responsibilities in 2011, a process for working together and a compensation commitment to Corix should an agreement not be reached. The process for working together included two distinct stages: first, a due diligence phase that included infrastructure, business and financial planning, and, finally, development and execution of a long-term concession agreement. In 2014, Corix and the Lulu Island Energy Company executed a concession agreement that will see Corix design, build, finance and operate the system over 30 years, while Lulu Island Energy Company would manage the infrastructure. Richmond City Council is the regulator of utility rates. “Corix has been a great partner. We have a great working relationship with their team; they’ve served our customers well and have delivered our capital projects on time and on budget, in fact, often under budget,” says Russell.

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CITY OF RICHMOND

FUTURE PLANS With a vision in mind for the future of the city, Postolka believes Richmond must adhere to its business plan to accelerate its growth in renewable energy. “We expect growth to continue,” he says. “We’re making sure that buildings outside of the current district energy system service areas that we can’t economically connect yet are built to be ‘district energy-ready’. This approach ensures the buildings are designed to be connectable in the future. They have in-building energy 102

£1.5bn+ Approximate revenue

2002

Year founded

1,800

Approximate number of employees

systems but that when our pipe comes to their front door, we can easily connect them to our low carbon district

“Geo-Exchange is a very simple technology and has existed for over 30 years on a smaller scale. We’ve implemented it in a much bigger way” — Alen Postolka, District Energy Manager

APRIL 2019

energy system.” The City’s work is consistent with its 2041 Official Community Plan which defines Richmond’s land use and development, social, economic, and sustainability policies over the upcoming decades. Russell believes the city will continue to grow and develop in key areas. Through the plan, the City aims to add another 80,000 people throughout the city, with the vast majority being directed to the city’s high density, mixed use City Centre. “The city is


103

experiencing sustained investments,

provide customer service excellence

in new multi-family residential buildings,

and competitive rates using low-car-

transit, and infrastructure improve-

bon energy systems. “When it comes

ments,” says Russel. “We intend to

to our climate action work, there is an

do the same for district energy.”

expression that ‘nations talk and cities

The City of Richmond benefited from a

act’… our approach is really important

unique starting point: a city centre area

because we have to be poised to take

ripe for redevelopment and a support-

our position in the 21st century as

ive City Council. Today, supplied with

opposed to being stuck back in the

thermal energy from the City’s wholly

20th century,” concludes Brodie.

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ADAPTING TO THE MODERN ENERGY SECTOR THROUGH DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION WRIT TEN BY

M ARCUS L AWRENCE PRODUCED BY

LE WIS VAUGHAN

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BKW AG

BKW’s CIO,Thomas Zinniker, discusses the energy and infrastructure services company’s digital transformation journey and how technology is driving optimised and sustainable business operations

A

s the energy industry becomes increasingly focused on decarbonisation, digital transformation is vital to many

companies’ current and future relevance. One 106

firm that stands at the forefront of this industry wide shift is Swiss multinational BKW. “Digital transformation is the answer, it’s not a hindrance,” says Thomas Zinniker, CIO at the energy and infrastructure company. Zinniker believes that decarbonisation is the market’s biggest driver of digital transformation, and that the diversification this has inspired at BKW necessitates an IT overhaul to cater to its broader structure and wealth of new employees and data sets. The company has undergone a significant expansion over the past five years which has seen its employee headcount more than double to reach over 7,000 through acquisitions, as well as growth of the main business. Adoption of digital solutions has not only facilitated this growth but also enabled the firm to maintain a decentralised approach APRIL 2019


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AN INNOVATIVE APPROACH TO INTERNATIONAL SITE NETWORKING UPC Business operates a software-defined global WAN for BKW. Stephan Ging, Director Solution Business Sales, outlines in the following interview why Managed SD-WAN is the ideal solution for the energy and infrastructure services group. UPC Business is a leading provider in the area of site networking in Switzerland. How is business developing in the large enterprise segment? We are present with our fibre optic network not just in the urban centres, but in all regions of Switzerland. This makes us an attractive partner for WAN solutions for large-scale enterprises from all sectors. Over the last 20 years we have grown steadily, over the past financial year alone by 9.2 percent. We are especially pleased that we were able to expand our share of the market in the security-sensitive financial sector. Our customer base includes more than half of all cantonal banks. We have succeeded in winning renowned customers in other sectors as well, such as insurance, industry, retail, energy and health.

“ THE DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION CALLS FOR TOP-QUALITY NETWORK SERVICES.” The digital transformation challenges companies on all levels. What kind of support does UPC Business offer? The digital transformation calls for topquality network services. The quality requirements for networking are rising. A communication failure can have a devastating effect on the affected company, both financially and with regard to its reputation. As a corporate network carrier we not only have the duty of supporting all forms of connectivity, but must also ensure that the data and applica-

Stephan Ging Director Solution Business Sales, UPC Business

tions in the data centres and in the cloud are always available at every desired location and on every terminal. In addition, our clients have every right to expect that security is guaranteed at all times. We know our customers’ requirements very well, because we inform ourselves thoroughly about their business models and analyse their needs exactly. In this way we can together develop the optimal solution. From the very beginning we point out what is feasible, and in cooperation with our partners, we offer individually designed overall solutions with significant added value. Software-defined networks are in vogue and are replacing older technologies. What does this development mean for company networks?


The trend is moving toward networks which need to “understand” the applications. So beyond the actual transport of data, it’s also about supporting the continual operation of the applications in the best possible way. The SD-WAN technology used by BKW ensures this in an optimum way. Regarding digital

“SECURITY IS AN INTEGRAL PART OF SD-WAN SOLUTIONS.” transformation, the topic of security also plays a central role. Security is an integral part of SD-WAN solutions. With them, the traditional separation between network and security vanishes. This is a great advantage for companies which are currently in the process of digital transformation. Other advantages: simpler integration of international sites, more flexibility, more efficient and powerful management, etc. SD-WAN uses primarily the Internet as the communications infrastructure and upgrades it with company-specific intelligence with central management. UPC Business has been operating an SD-WAN for the energy and infrastructure services group BKW since 2018. With which needs did BKW approach UPC Business? As a rapidly expanding and diversifying group with locations in Switzerland and abroad, BKW was looking for an agile solution for site networking with cloud and security integration. After the first invitation to tender we withdrew at first, because

from our point of view the SD-WAN market had not yet reached the maturity necessary for the defined requirements. BKW subsequently engaged in constructive dialogue with us, after which the invitation to tender was revised again. This final invitation to tender included a total of three parts: access, SD-WAN and security. Regarding SD-WAN, Cisco best met the demands. We offered the entire package, and in the end prevailed over our competitors. The deciding factor was ultimately the fact that both contracting parties were willing to set forth on a path for which the goal was clearly defined, although the way to get there was still unknown. In the course of realisation it became evident that BKW and UPC Business were agreed on one crucial aspect: We can and will pursue trailblazing solutions!

UPC BUSINESS 20 YEARS OF CONTINUITY AND INNOVATION Since 1998, UPC Business has gradually developed into a full-service provider for business customers. The spectrum of the innovative ICT offering ranges from compact standard solutions for SMEs through to customised project solutions for complex company networks. As a general contractor with an extensive partner network, today UPC Business meets all telecom and IT requirements of SMEs and large enterprises. The company’s own broadband network, which consists of 95% optical fibre, facilitates network connections throughout the whole of Switzerland with transfer capacities of up to 100 Gbit/s. Mobile voice and data services are provided by an outstanding Swiss mobile network in top quality. UPC Business stands for customer proximity, innovative technology, an established partner ecosystem and high customer satisfaction. Today, tens of thousands of companies from all lines of business rely on the services from UPC Business. upc.ch/business

Which specific advantages does SD-WAN offer for BKW? BKW can use a variety of connectivity options and cut costs in the area of access. The SD-WAN creates homogeneity throughout the group — for the communications capabilities, application performance, cloud access, Internet access, and security. BKW has a homogeneous overview of the service behaviour. Other benefits are the central management and the visibility it brings, the simple handling of adaptations and the easy access to cloud services. Over the long term, BKW will benefit from the innovative potential of a market-powerful software developer. Which reasons are in favour of Managed SD-WAN? At the forefront is easing the burden on the IT department. When it no longer has to take care of planning, implementation and operation of the WAN, it has more time for the needs of users. In the end, satisfied users are more relevant for the success of the digital transformation than operation of a WAN infrastructure is. It merely helps to create the ideal technical conditions. What is your impression of the journey so far with BKW? What are the most important factors which led to the success of the project? For both companies, adopting new technology involved special challenges from the very start. So far we have mastered these challenges well, because we work closely together and communicate openly.


BKW AG

“Our credo is to be as decentralised as possible” — Thomas Zinniker, CIO, BKW AG

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CLICK TO WATCH : ‘THE YEAR 2018 IN NUMBERS | ANNUAL RESULT’ 111 to its operations through networking

planning cycles. “We’re using a Scaled

rather than integration. “We do not

Agile Framework (SAFe) to manage

intend to integrate the acquired com-

the whole portfolio of projects, we’re

panies completely, so our approach

using Scrum as an agile implementa-

is to network the acquired businesses

tion methodology, and we’re using

and benefit from the various unique

Design Thinking methodology to define

skills each company brings,” says

and develop new products and busi-

Zinniker. “Our credo is to be as decen-

ness models,” Zinniker explains. This

tralised as possible, and only centralise

gears BKW’s workforce to a level of

when absolutely necessary.”

flexibility that enables it to make the

Within the core business, Zinniker

most of the speed afforded by newly-

has overseen the adoption of a host of

implemented technologies. “In the

modern methodologies to enable the

past, the planning cycle at BKW was

firm to focus on the essentials and

in decades, and we have now restruc-

significantly mitigate the length of its

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112

really matters is what is happening

for smart metering and Microsoft on

next year.”

the Cloud side.” BKW has also part-

This forward-thinking laying of foun-

nered with the Business Branch of

dations is augmented with a potent

UPC Switzerland (UPC Business), the

array of partnerships, driving success

country’s largest cable operator, to

across each of BKW’s business units.

power its connectivity with speed, sec-

“Partnerships are essential for our

urity and reliability. “UPC Business is our

success, because speed is key today,”

partner for the whole network and

Zinniker notes. “Special knowhow is

interconnectivity. It is vital for the newly-

essential. We have a number of part-

acquired businesses to be connected

ners for specific areas, like Siemens

to our network rapidly, so we are using

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Year founded

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Approximate number of employees 113

E XE CU T I VE PRO FI LE

Thomas Zinniker Thomas Zinniker joined BKW in 2016. As CIO he is responsible for developing the ICT services supporting the change of BKW from a pure utilities company to an international Infrastructure Services Supplier. Thomas Zinniker has a degree in Computer Science and Business Administration. Prior to BKW, Thomas worked in different global companies as software engineer, consultant and CIO

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software defined virtual networks to enable this.” It is also planned that BKW’s partnership with UPC Business will provide the essential capacity to manage its Europe-wide wind park network with efficiency, as well as facilitating asset integration into the network. This integration will provide BKW with sharper insights into productivity and maintenance necessities. “The connectivity of those wind parks is absolutely essential, as you can’t have your own guys under each windmill monitoring and maintaining them all the time,” Zinniker comments. APRIL 2019


In the wind business, its WindLog tool incorporates AI to monitor wind turbine components, such as oil temperature and gear box integrity. Another core partner for BKW’s digital strategy is Microsoft, which drives the firm’s Cloud capabilities, powering its core IT functions through the Office 365 platform and providing a customer relationship management (CRM) platform in Microsoft Dynamics. “Our use of Cloud technology is very broad, and we are planning to offload further processes from our data centre into the Cloud wherever it’s useful,” says Zinniker. When selecting Siemens for its smart metering system, Zinniker notes one of the core requirements for the smart metre management system would need to be based on Cloud technology for flexibility, agility and scalability. “The smart metre produces roughly 40,000 times the amount of data over a traditional metre,” Zinniker says, highlighting the importance of the system being built using technology capable of managing vast data volumes. Big Data is a historic component of BKW’s operations, with a digital twin of the whole grid having been in operation for the past 10 years. This enables BKW to w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com

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simulate loads and scenarios to enable

BKW has in its employees, placing new

data-driven management of the system

tools in their hands and asking how

to optimise maintenance and expansion

best they can augment their roles with

of the grid under various scenarios in

the new technologies. “We support our

the near term and to strategic level up

staff with adapting to and embracing

to 25 years. With its expansion over the

new technologies,” Zinniker reflects.

past decade, BKW has access to

“The Office 365 rollout throughout the

a wealth of new data sets through its

organisation is one example where we

acquired engineering companies. “By

actually said: ‘We’re not going to tell

combining that data, we have the cap-

you how you have to work. Here is

ability to develop completely new

a toolbox. Just use it. Play around with

products to help our customers to make

it. We will help you to understand it, but

better decisions, or support them with

you have to find your own way of working.’

deciding where to build new streets,

Through this method, people could see

new grids, or whatever infrastructure is

for themselves that the tool would help

necessary,” Zinniker says.

them to manage new challenges in the

Change management throughout the expansion has illustrated the faith

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market.” In action, the wider internal benefits of the technologies have bec-


117

ome clear. “It’s the new way of working,”

provide any kind of information they

Zinniker adds, discussing the capacity

need on the spot,” says. “We deliver

for remote work afforded by disruptive

vital information for firefighters when

solutions. “Employees have much more

they are tackling a fire in a building,

freedom. Work wherever you are, when-

because electric installations can be

ever you like, having access to all the

quite dangerous for firefighters,” he

data to work on topics whenever it’s

says. “They can see the data immedi-

feasible.” For end-users, there are

ately on a tablet, look at what’s installed

myriad boons to their relationships

there, where to find the nearest point

with BKW services and solutions, and

where they can switch off the electric-

Zinniker mentions an intriguing exam-

ity for the street, or for the block.”

ple of the positive impact of big data

Zinniker says that BKW’s adoption of

to firefighter decision-making. “With

emergent technologies shows no signs

mobile tools we have the capability to

of slowing. As it continues to invest in w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com


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“Connectivity of those wind parks is essential; you can’t have your own guys under each windmill monitoring and maintaining them all the time” — Thomas Zinniker, CIO, BKW AG

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C O M PA N Y FACT S

• BKW’s employee headcount has more than doubled since 2014, reaching over 7,000 • Around 50% of Europe’s energy is consumed within buildings • The smart metre produces roughly 40,000 times the amount of data over a traditional metre

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renewable energy solutions, BKW is also increasing its potency in the efficient building sector. “We are developing a large business for building solutions and installations, as around 50% of Europe’s energy is consumed within buildings, says Zinniker. “We are helping companies and consumers to be much more efficient within their buildings, and therefore save energy. In the engineering business, we have a number of engineers specialised in energy efficiency who will drive uptake of new technologies that manage energy far more sustainably.” Zinniker stresses that digital transformation is not seen as a hindrance or burden at BKW, but that it is instead the answer to many questions asked of the energy and infrastructure sector by the modern world. “I think our sector was perceived 10 years ago as a dull, slow industry,” he says. “It has now become one of the most interesting through the adoption of technology, the changes of the markets, and new players coming in. It’s extremely interesting to be here.”

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The Value of Environmental, Social & Governance We sit down with Vhahangwele (Hangwi) Manavhela, Environment, Social & Governance Manager at South Africa’s largest asset management company PIC, to discuss sustainability, transparency, diversity and equality in a changing world. WRIT TEN BY

HARRY MENE AR

APRIL 2019

PRODUCED BY

S TUART IRVING


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hahangwele Manavhela, also known as Hangwi, joined South Africa’s Public Investment Corporation (PIC) in 2014

in the role of Environmental, Social & Governance specialist for Unlisted Investment, later becoming ESG Manager. She received her Master’s Degree in Sociology from the University of Johannesburg and, prior to taking up the mantle of ESG Manager at Public Investment Corporation, worked at Tshikululu Social Investments. “Working at the social investment company was the foundation of what later became my ESG role. That’s how my journey began, with a very strong passion around social issues,” she explains. 124

We sat down with Manavhela to find out how she has been tackling the tri-fold challenges of ESG management at South Africa’s largest asset management organisation with over US$150bn under management, and what she sees as the way forward for South Africa as a whole. The role of an ESG officer focuses on three key areas: Environmental, which tackles how a company approaches its relationship with the natural world; Social, an expression of the way a company manages its relationships with suppliers, employees, customers and the communities whose lives it touches; and Governance, which deals with the internal controls of a business, including audits, executive remuneration, corruption and leadership diversity and equality. “My role was to kickstart APRIL 2019


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“You need to encourage companies to adopt the strategies where they can get those quick wins, and then turn those into long term strategies” — Vhahangwele Manavhela, Environment, Social & Governance Manager, PIC

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the ESG, to develop policies, develop systems and make sure those practices were fully integrated within the investment process. Obviously I started from a social perspective, and then learned more about the governance and environmental aspects as I went,” she explains. “Once you start working on all of them, you start to see how integrated they are and together they drive the company towards sustainability.” Although her educational background lies in the social aspect of the ESG role, Manavhela emphasises the governance aspect of the ESG role as a starting point for effecting positive change within the social and environmental elements. “For me, governance is the lens. Once there is good governance within the company it becomes much easier to approach, say, the environmental and social aspects.” She admits that the challenge at the heart of applying ESG within a company is measuring the impact in line with financial performance. “For example,” she points out, “companies might not recognise the needs of their employees until they are on strike and only then will recognise the losses w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com

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Bridging Business gaps We facilitate and manage bilateral investment relationships between Sub-Sahara Africa and European countries

Find out more here Tel: +49 69224 59 62 0 64 Fax: +49 69224 59 62 0 65

Email: sales@saims.eu Web: saims.eu

incurred by not having an effective

“When you see that the people within

ESG strategy that includes managing

the company have got a sense of

the interest of their employees.

ownership, that is what gives me

The company could be collapsing

satisfaction. I see people starting

because of poor governance, corruption

to enjoy the benefits of some-

or fraud, and only once it is collapsing

thing that they have never

will a lot of companies be able to see

experienced, and that is

those financial losses.”

where I take much pride

Manavhela stresses that, for her,

in the transformation of

the core of success, and where returns

South Africa. Previously in

and victories are most obvious, is the

South Africa,” she explains,

space where governance strategies

“companies were owned by

have positive social impact. “I’m

whites, but now we are working

passionate about people, valued as

towards a point where the ownership

human capital,” she declares.

is shared. There’s also new money

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“My role was to kick start the ESG, develop policies and systems, and make sure those practices were fully integrated within the investment process” — Vhahangwele Manavhela, Environment, Social & Governance Manager, PIC

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$150bn Assets under management

1911

Year founded

372

Approximate number of employees 131

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BIO

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Vhahangwele Manavhela leads a team that is responsible for due diligence, compliance, and engagement with key stakeholders on environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues within the Public Investment Corporation (PIC). PIC is wholly owned by South African government and is the largest asset manager in Africa. Hangwi’s role evaluates potential investments for their performance prior to acquisition and also works with companies in PIC’s existing portfolio to strengthen their performance and ability to measure progress towards ESG benchmarks. Professional Highlights • ESG Manager, Public Investment Corporation, 2014 – Present • Advisory Committee Member, UN Principles of Responsible Investing (UNPRI), 2016 – 2020 • Director & Volunteer, Samson and Naledzani Foundation, 2016 – present • Social Development Specialist, Tshikululu Social Investment 2010-2014 • Programme Manager, Care International 2004-2009 • Social Impact Assessor, Nsovo

APRIL 2019

Environmental Consultants, (Part time) Education & Professional Affiliations • M.S., Sociology (Social Impact Assessment ), University of Johannesburg, 2014 • B.A. Honours in Psychology, University of Venda, 2003 • B.A., Psychology, University of the North (Limpopo), 1995 Fellowship Interests In April to May 2018 Hangwi was part of the Eisenhower Global fellowship Programme in the United State of America. The focus of her fellowship was as follows. • Examine frameworks for measuring the impact of ESG activities • Explore ways to make ESG integration a part of companies’ fiduciary duties • Study university-level programs around for ESG valuation and integration; develop partnerships to bring similar programs to South Africa • Explore means by which investors can drive economic sustainability in rural areas


and old money. There are very few black people in South Africa with old money. As we put our ESG policies into practice, we’ve seen a greater pool of investment opportunities arise amongst people with new money. And that means you’re investing in people of colour and women too.” Manavhela also emphasises the need for consumer education, twinned with added transparency on behalf of companies in order to improve and encourage sustainable practices. “We still need a lot of education on the consumer side to understand ESG issues,” she says. “Customers can’t just look at the financial value of a product; they also need to look at the sustainability aspects. When a product is cheaper, ask yourself, why is it cheaper than the company next door? Maybe a lot of people have been exploited to make it cheaper, she continues. “Transparency is something we need to move towards. We need to get to a point where companies disclose employee remuneration, minimum wage within the company and so on. If we move towards a point where we disclose those things, then maybe the consumer will be more aware and more alert, in terms of w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com

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making a choice of where they should buy and who they should support.” The environmental pillar of her role is, Manavhela explains, currently tied to the concept of risk management, compliance with legislation and applying best practice principles. “South Africa is a water-scarce country. There is no way you can look at the risk management of a company and then not be forced to identify environment as one of those risks.” Environmental regulations become part of compliance and then, she explains, “you start 134

realising that there are other things that can help me save money, like resource efficiency”. Transitioning from compliance to short-to-long-term sustainable practices is the roadmap for the Environmental element of Manavhela’s role. For companies to get of the national grid and adopt the renewable energy require a proper infrastructure and financial capital. Although there has been a successful reduction made of average cost of electricity generated from R2.37 to .77c, the realisation of your investment is still within medium-to-long term. ESG issues cannot be achieved over night but require medium-to-long term APRIL 2019


“The redefining of sustainability has forced me to reconsider my current role in society and the contribution I can make to advance sustainability in a more meaningful and clearly defined way� — Vhahangwele Manavhela, Environment, Social & Governance Manager, PIC

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APRIL 2019


“When you see that the people within the company have got a sense of ownership, that is what gives me satisfaction” — Vhahangwele Manavhela, Environment, Social & Governance Manager, PIC

under the auspices of Eisenhower Fellowship (EF) in the United States. The purpose of her EF journey was to to determine if the US market has evolved in terms of ESG integration to a point where ESG is fully integrated into the investment process, and consequently if they are able to quantify its value as part of equity valuation. Based on the information she collected during her fellowship, Manavhela decided to pursue her aspiration of studying and is currently working on her PHD, further exploring the role and value of ESG in business.

planning. But there are quick wins

In the conclusion of her report,

as well: changing light bulbs, installing

Examining Models for Quantifying the

water meters. What you do is encourage

Contribution of ESG-Related Activities

companies to adopt the strategies where

to Financial Performance, she writes:

they can get those quick wins, and then

“I was on a mission to find both meaning

turn those into long term strategies.”

and new ways to advance sustainability

Despite all the obstacles making

in this changing world. The redefining

ESG mandatory for investors and within

of sustainability has forced me to

invested companies could be a game

reconsider my current role in the

changer for achieving sustainability.

society and the contribution I can make

The principles of responsible investment,

to advance sustainability in a more

as championed by institution like

meaningful and clearly defined way.”

UNPRI and Global Compact, are key drive to driving sustainability. In April-May 2018 Manavhela was part of the 7 weeks global programme w w w.c so ma ga z i n e. com

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Profile for Energy Digital

CSO Magazine - April 2019  

CSO Magazine - April 2019