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Sustainable industry

Green advisor

LKAB - a sustainable industrial giant

LKAB is active in the mining industry. The company has declared its commitment to social, economic and environmental sustainability and its determination to serve as a role model in the industry.

ÅF is proud to collaborate with LKAB and to contribute to the company’s work on sustainability. ÅF’s sustainability strategy is to help customers like LKAB to achieve their sustainability goals. By sharing its competence, experience and expertise ÅF can assist LKAB to reach their sustainably targets, one of which is to become even more energy-efficient and to achieve new records in terms of reduced climate impact. ÅF is proud to play its part in LKAB’s sustainability work and hopes that this will continue to give rise to even more innovations and improvements.

LKAB’s sustainability strategy embraces four focus areas: an attractive LKAB, attractive communities, responsible business operations and resource efficient production.

Attractive LKAB

This focus area aims to ensure that LKAB is an attractive employer for both current and future co-workers. To enable employees to feel secure in their jobs, LKAB works to create a safe working environment and reduce the number of accidents. The company is taking measures to improve gender equality by setting a target of 25 percent female representation in the workforce by 2020.

Attractive communities

An attractive community is fundamental for LKAB’s business operations. This challenge is addressed in liaison with local stakeholders. The aim is to safe guard the long-term future of mining operations in a community that offers a good environment in which to live and opportunities for other businesses to develop. To solve local housing shortages LKAB has set itself a target to build 200 new homes in both Kiruna and Gällivare between 2011 and 2015. 

Responsible business operations

LKAB’s operations have an impact on the surroundings and the environment, but by maintaining a continuous focus on its responsibilities, the company is able to minimize its impact and that of its suppliers and partners. Emissions of particulates, sulphur dioxide and fluoride have been halved since 1980. Levels of dust in the surrounding communities have been reduced by watering and paving or by relocating operations. LKAB aspires to set a good example and to follow international guidelines such as the UN’s Global Compact and Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights and the OECD’s Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises

Together with the Municipality of Kiruna and the municipal utilities company, Tekniska Verken i Kiruna AB, LKAB has pioneered a new energy system that aims to offer  Kiruna residents Sweden’s cheapest district heating while also reducing environmental impact. Waste heat from the LKAB plant that processes magnetite ore into pellets will be fed into the network that supplies district heating to all of urban Kiruna.

Resource-efficient production

LKAB is committed to being a mining industry leader in terms of resource-efficient and climate-efficient production. Collaboration to develop products and technologies makes the entire value chain more efficient. Environmental impact is reduced through energy efficiency improvements, the phasing out of coal and oil, an increased use of waste heat and the recycling of mining waste.

LKAB’s promise to its customers – Performance in ironmaking” – is a pledge that steelworks customers can improve their own process efficiency while reducing climate impact. LKAB customers’ carbon dioxide emissions are 85 percent lower than their competitors'. LKAB creates prosperity by being the world’s most resource-efficient iron ore producer. And as LKAB use 1.5 percent of all the energy supplied in Sweden, so it’s important for them to take their responsibility seriously and minimize environmental impact.

LKAB also carries out world-leading research into various methods for reducing the climate impact of steel manufacturing. Together with the European mining and steel industries LKAB is involved in the ULCOS project (Ultra Low CO2 Steelmaking). This aims to halve both the amount of energy used to produce steel and the carbon dioxide emissions from this process by 2050. Much of the research is carried out in LKAB’s own experimental blast furnace in Luleå.

This is a rewrite of an article in ÅFs Green Advisor Report, read more about LKAB in the latest issue of Green Advisor Report