Environmental data

In line with our strong focus on resource efficiency, we strive to operate with minimum inputs of energy and materials, and to closely monitor our consumption of electricity, heating and water.

Outotec continuously measures and monitors its own environmental performance and aims to reduce its impacts related to, for example, CO2 emissions from flights and energy consumption. The bulk of Outotec’s operations involve engineering and business management in offices located in 36 countries.  Only a few of them require an environmental permit, and the risks related to these operations are managed by certified environmental management systems.

Our operations include research centers in Finland and Germany; a Dewatering Technology Center, two manufacturing workshops and a ceramic plate production plant in Finland; assembly shops in Brazil, Canada, China, and the USA; spare parts and service workshops in Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Mozambique and South Africa; and several warehouses. None of these sites are in or adjacent to protected areas or areas of high biodiversity value (GRI 304-1).

Approximately 90% of Outotec’s manufacturing is outsourced. Outotec did not make any acquisitions or divestments in 2017.

Sustainability, pollution prevention and sound environmental management are required in all of our operations. We strive to operate with minimum inputs of energy and materials, and we record our consumption of electricity, heating and water. Our reporting of environmental data covers Outotec’s premises and employees, as well as contractors working under our supervision at project sites.

Our management’s commitment to the continuous improvement of our environmental performance is reflected in both ambitious target setting and results. We evaluate the environmental aspects of our offices, research centers and manufacturing workshops, and set annual targets based on this evaluation. Outotec operates according to globally harmonized business processes. The company is globally certified to ISO 9001 (quality), ISO 14001 (environment) and OHSAS 18001 (safety) standards. In addition, the locations in Finland and Germany are certified to ISO 50001 (energy). Our performance is followed-up regularly through internal and external audits.

Environmental criteria are taken into account whenever we select new office premises. Outotec’s two largest offices, in Espoo, Finland, and Oberursel, Germany, fulfil LEED® Gold requirements. Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) is a globally recognized green building certification program.

At our research centers, we record monthly our consumption of electricity and natural gas and other fuels used for test purposes. We also have local or unit-specific targets for the energy efficiency of other operations in Finland and Germany and we are going to establish local energy efficiency and environmental targets for all of our locations in 2018.

Our waste management system provides for the collection, sorting, storage and disposal of waste on our own premises. Outotec employees are instructed to separate different types of waste for sorted collection. Where hazardous wastes such as radioactive, flammable, explosive, toxic, corrosive or bio-hazardous materials need to be handled, specialized contractors are commissioned to dispose of these materials safely and in line with local legal requirements and customers’ requirements at construction sites. 


Energy consumption within the organization (GRI 302-1)

Figures for our total global electricity and fuel consumption from non-renewable sources are shown. We did not directly consume any renewable fuels, or sell any electricity, heating, cooling or steam in 2017. However, we purchased 8,290 MWh electricity based on renewable hydropower in Finland and Germany. This corresponds to 47% of our electricity consumption and 19% of total energy consumption. Figures for energy consumption are collected globally from our operations based on the energy-related invoicing in each location. The conversion factors between energy units are taken from Statistics Finland.

Energy intensity (GRI 302-3)

Our energy intensity calculations include fuel, electricity, heating, cooling and steam consumed within Outotec.

Denominator used in energy intensity calculations 2017 2016 2015
Sales, EUR million 1,139 1,059 1,201

Reduction of energy consumption (GRI 302-4)

Our target for 2017 was to implement a new Energy Management System (EMS) based on ISO 50001 in five locations in Finland. This target embedding the aim to reduce our primary energy consumption was reached and the Finnish location were certified by TÜV Rheinland Cert GmbH in 2017. The same system was implemented in four locations in Germany in 2016. In Finland, we renewed our official energy saving agreement, adding new short-term (4% savings until 2020) and long-term (7.5% savings until 2025) targets. The agreement is organized by Motiva, a 100% state-owned agency, and sets year 2015 as the new base year. These principles will be enlarged globally to other Outotec locations in the coming years, and a full certification will be considered case-by-case. 

The consumption figures include different types of fuels, purchased electricity, and district heating. The conversion factors between energy units were taken from Statistics Finland.

Energy consumption in Finnish units, TJ 2017 2016 2015
Pori research center and Turula works      
Energy consumption 35.7 38.3 33.4
Energy saved due to efficiency improvements, TJ compared to base year -2.3 9.6 base year
Lappeenranta works      
Energy consumption 17.2 18.8 18.0
Energy saved due to efficiency improvements, TJ compared to base year 0.8 1.2 base year
Turku works      
Energy consumption 11.3 13.2 13.0
Energy saved due to efficiency improvements, TJ compared to base year 1.7 3.6 base year

In 2017, we defined energy targets for the second time in Germany: 2% reduction in electricity use and 1-2% reduction in gas consumption by the end of 2019. 70% of the reduction targets were already met in the first year, e.g. through lowering of compressed air levels, replacement of blowers, and new lighting concepts. Based on the good results we are reconsidering the targets for electricity consumption.


Water withdrawal (GRI 303-1)

We purchase water locally from municipal water suppliers, and channel wastewater into municipal waste water systems. The water volumes are calculated mostly based on invoices, except for certain locations in Africa that use water from drill wells. Because our workshops are mainly assembly shops, no process water is discharged. Our research center in Pori uses measured amounts of river water for cooling purposes in test facilities. After use, this water is channeled back to the river. Outotec stores no rainwater; neither do we use wastewater from other organizations.

The municipal water consumption reduced in 2017 mostly due to water savings in the Australian locations (Cairns, Sydney, Melbourne) and our Espoo headquarters.


Direct GHG emissions (scope 1) (GRI 305-1)

Scope 1 greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are calculated based on the consumption of non-renewable fuels in our locations globally, plus the carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) emissions released by company cars, excluding vehicles used in site operations at customers’ plants. The conversion factors for the fuel specific CO2e emissions are taken from Statistics Finland. For the company cars, the CO2e emissions are calculated based on the reports of the leasing companies in Finland (annual kilometers, CO2 emissions/km/car type). For other locations, the CO2e emissions were calculated by using the reported kilometers and average CO2e emissions.  However, to avoid double counting, for those locations who had reported the gasoline consumption separately, the kilometer-based emissions were eliminated from the calculation. The GHG emission calculations only relate to CO2, as we do not release emissions of other greenhouse gases. The gas included in the calculations is CO2 from fossil fuel sources, excluding bio-based CO2 emissions.

Energy indirect GHG emissions (scope 2) (GRI 305-2)

In line with the Greenhouse Gas Protocol, we used a Corporate Accounting and Reporting Standard to calculate Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions. The emissions are indicated in CO2 equivalents, which also cover other greenhouse gases. The country specific emission factors were retrieved from RE_DISS for the European countries, for the other countries from GaBi databases or for those not found in these, we used the Protocol’s calculation tool ‘GHG emissions from purchased electricity’. In calculations for Finland and Germany we used market based and ‘Residual mix CO2e emission’ factors. In terms of consolidation, the figures include operations in which Outotec has full financial control, i.e. our own operations and offices, with site operations at customers’ premises excluded. Because the change of the source of the country specific emission factors caused more than 10% change on the results, Scope 2 emissions were recalculated for years 2015 and 2016 with the new emission factors.   

In 2017, Outotec purchased 8,290 MWh of CO2-free electricity from renewable energy sources in Finland and Germany, equaling 47% of our electricity consumption and 19% of total energy consumption. We are gradually moving to renewable energy in our major locations in Germany and Finland, excluding the Pori research center.

Market-based Scope 2 emissions decreased by 17%, mainly due to the increased share of renewable energy, but also due to reduced electricity consumption. The base year is 2015.

Other indirect greenhouse gas emissions (scope 3) (GRI 305-3)

We include air traveling, train journeys and commuting in Scope 3 GHG emissions. The two first ones are received from our globally centralized travel agency that covers all major locations. According to our Travel policy the preferred travel agency is to be used for all travel purchases, and no purchases from local travel agencies are allowed. Thus, we have estimated that the coverage of the travel agency report is higher than 98% but no extrapolation was made to cover the unknown share. The commuting related emissions are estimated based on average numbers realized in Espoo and extrapolated to cover the all employees.

We report the carbon footprint of our supply chain separately, and it amounted in 2017 to 508,400 (2016: 516,470) tonnes of CO2e. The largest source of CO2e emissions was the category of basic metals and fabricated metals, representing 43% (53%) of the total. The calculations are based on Outotec’s spending and carried out using the Scope 3 screening tool developed by Quantis and GHG Protocol. We changed the methodology in 2017 due to the discontinuation of the UK Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) method. Because of the large influence of the calculation method change on our supply chain’s emissions, we recalculated year 2015 and 2016 emissions according to the new methodology to guarantee comparability over the years.

Our travel-related emissions remained approximately the same as in 2016. Due to increased business activities in 2017, the traveled kilometers increased slightly. However, the related emissions remained nearly unchanged because our personnel increasingly traveled in economy class on long-haul flights. The CO2e emissions for flight and rail travel are reported directly by our travel agent Carlson Wagonlit Travel.

We use teleconferences and Skype for Business for internal meetings. Video conferencing systems are also available in our major locations. After the Office365 collaboration and information sharing tools were taken into use in 2015, traveling to internal meetings has reduced.

Outotec strives to use responsible air carriers and hotels. Lufthansa and Finnair, for instance, use relatively new fleets, which generally produce lower emissions. In agreements with hotels, Outotec prefers hotels with favorable social responsibility policies.

GHG emissions intensity (GRI 305-4) and emissions avoided

Our relative flight emissions per one million euro sales decreased by 7% from 2016. The overall positive impact of Outotec’s business travel can be best illustrated by comparing our total annual GHG emissions in 2017, which were 27,552 (2016: 28,320) tonnes CO2e, with the emissions avoided by using seven of our key technologies, which amounted to 6,218,000 (5,870,000) tonnes of CO2e. The seven Outotec technologies used in calculations are: Copper flash smelting, Ferrochrome process, Alumina calcination, Ceramic filters, Co-generation, Coated titania anodes and TankCell 300 flotation cells.



Total weight of waste by type and disposal method (GRI 306-2)

Waste handling is not centrally managed at Outotec. We have instructed our locations to sort waste according to local regulations and the guidelines provided by facility owners.  Waste amounts declined significantly because of lower sales volumes and the reduced number of employees.

Significant spills (GRI 306-3)

No significant spills were reported in Outotec operations and project sites in 2017.

A small amount of hazardous waste is produced in the final surface treatment of filter presses in our Lappeenranta works. In addition, oily waste from lubricants used in the Turula works is classified as hazardous. In addition, our research centers produce small amounts of different kinds of hazardous chemicals. These hazardous wastes are sent to local hazardous waste treatment facilities. 


Materials used (GRI 301-1) 


The materials used include Outotec operations globally and exclude the materials used by our equipment suppliers and construction site operations. Steel consumption has increased due to the increase in equipment deliveries from our own manufacturing plants. We manufacture high-tech ceramics in Turku, Finland, for use in Outotec ceramic filters. Steel is the most important non-renewable material used in our products. The use of renewable materials in our products is limited to the use of wood, paper and cardboards as packaging materials. Our paper use declined due to increased digitalization.

Outotec’s Finnish workshops in Lappeenranta, Turula and Turku report the amount of packaging they use annually to Finnish Packaging Recycling Ltd (RINKI). Data from other locations is reported and consolidated on annual basis.


Related policies