We have identified 11 of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals where we are committed to make a specific contribution through our daily work. We strive to make the workdays for both our employees and for our end customers safer, more efficient and more enjoyable. This way we also work for a more sustainable industry. Below we list some examples on how our activities are aligned with 11 of the goals.
Goal 4 - Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all
The last five years we have had automation apprentices from the local vocational school. It is a win-win situation giving young professionals the chance to learn from hands on experience, and we get to know talents for future recruitment as well as getting valuable help in our production and service teams. We think it is part of our social responsibility to help young professionals to get job training. Furthermore, we encourage motivated students to continue more advanced studies, in fact several of our former apprentices now study at colleges and universities.
Goal 5 - Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls
It could be a great loss to only recruit from a part of the total talent pool – we employ based on qualifications regardless of gender, religion and ethnicity. This is also reflected by our owners when members of the board are to be elected. We applaud the increase of women working in a previously male dominated industry. When working abroad we do like to mention that in Norwegian tunnelling industry there are many female role models. Surprisingly, in some countries, women in the tunnel are said to bring bad luck – we believe that a mixed workforce will improve the quality the work being done.
Goal 6 - Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all
Our customers are makers of underground water and sewage infrastructure. Currently we are closely involved in the project to create a channel for a second water source for Oslo municipality, water supply security should have a high focus everywhere in the world.
Machine control of drilling rigs has been pioneered by Bever Control. The computer-controlled system increases the drilling accuracy which is a main contributor to optimised drill and blast tunnelling. A protected and healthy working place for the operator contributes to a safe operation. Photo: Norwegian Road Authority
Drilling for a run-of-river hydropower plant in Sumatera, Indonesia. Photo: FMM
Goal 7 - Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all
Our customers are also heavily involved in the construction of hydropower plants. Most of the electricity in Norway is generated with hydropower and water tunnels have been constructed here continuously the last 100 years, there are more than 1600 hydropower plants in Norway today. Our products are also used internationally for hydropower projects. Right now, we have a customer working on a major expansion of a power plant in Sumatera, Indonesia. There are many developing countries that has a huge potential in harvesting more energy from water.
By helping our customers to be efficient, accurate and safe in their work, we contribute constructively to the construction of the future green energy sources and water and sewage infrastructure.
Goal 8 - Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all
Automation in the underground industry has high focus also because it can play an important role in increasing the safety for the staff. More automatic and remotely controlled operations can reduce the need to expose workers to a dangerous environment. From the very beginning we have had the aim to develop products that can reduce risk for accidents during construction and for creating a robust and safe underground structure for its full lifetime.
Goal 9 - Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation
Constructing underground space may have an important negative impact on the environment if it is not done carefully.
Underground construction may lower the ground water level and tap lakes for water unless properly managed. Our solutions for grouting management assist the contractor in optimising the process to ensure watertight constructions. The cost of grouting can be up to 30% of the total tunnel construction cost, so precise and real-time monitoring during the grouting is important also for cost control in the project.
Excavated masses must be treated properly, the rock masses may contaminate the environment due to content that can be radioactive, contain heavy metals or acid substances. One such example is black shale that can be found many places in Oslo area where we continuously take into use new underground space. By analysing drilling data, we can identify possible black shale early in the operation and plan the transport and dumping of the polluted masses to safe deposits efficiently.
Goal 10 - Reduce inequality within and among countries
As an independent company we sell and support our products worldwide both in developed and in developing countries. It has been a privilege to be able to assist economically important construction work in countries such as Chile, Bhutan, Brazil, Colombia, South Africa, China, Indonesia, Philippines – contributing to safe and efficient underground work in all corners of the world.
Goal 12 - Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns
In our production we follow the EU RoHS Directive by avoiding hazardous substances in our electronic components, and we also monitor our supplier’s compliance to the Responsible Minerals Initiative (RMI) in order to avoid the usage of tungsten, tin, tantalum, gold from conflict areas in our products.
Goal 13 - Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts
We have identified two processes in the construction of tunnels where we believe it is possible to do significant reductions in the use of cement whose production is requiring much energy and also is an important contributor to CO2 emissions.
The first process is the application of shotcrete for rock support. By our experience, it is quite normal that the actual volume of shotcrete applied is 20% or more above what is specified. By giving the shotcrete operator a tool to efficiently check applied thickness, the shotcrete layer will be closer to the required thickness. Europe’s most automated ore mines, and also one of the biggest consumers of shotcrete, LKAB in Kiruna in Sweden, has successfully implemented such a strategy to reduce the shotcrete consumption.
The second process is the grout injection process used to eliminate inflow of water. By actively using information from the drilling process and closely follow the flow and pressure during the injection, it is possible to reduce the total amount of grout spent significantly.
Goal 16 - Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels
We believe in fair and transparent competition; cartel agreements and corruption hinder efficient use of the society’s resources. This is reflected in the way we insist to conduct our business relations.
Goal 17 - Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development
As a company with a high focus on export to tunnel and mining industries around the world, we believe innovation can be increased through international cooperation. Our end users come from both industrialised and developing countries and we believe our technology contribute to safer and more efficient underground operations wherever it is used.
LKAB, Kiruna, Sweden. The shotcrete operator discusses spraying performance with the production planner. Scans are used to calculate the applied shotcrete thickness directly after spraying.