Championing Environmental Change
As the inventor of the technology behind pre-insulated pipes, LOGSTOR’s inspired energy-efficient heating solutions are helping to turn the tide on climate change
Project Manager: Nicolas Kernan
Our global climate is changing.
For millennia, atmospheric carbon dioxide had remained below 300 parts per million, yet today that key indicator exceeds 400. And it is rising.
The affects are plain to see. Greenland lost 279 billion tonnes of ice a year between 1993 and 2019; global sea levels have risen eight inches in the past 100 years; the average surface temperature of the earth has increased by 1.14 degrees Celsius since the late 19th century; and the six warmest years on record have taken place since 2014.
Scientists claim that climate change could be irreversible by 2030, meaning companies and countries alike must act now.
And, indeed, they are. From a political perspective, the European Union set tougher emission reduction targets at the end of 2020, outlined in a new 2030 Climate Target Plan.
EU heads of states agreed on a 55 percent reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 – an ambition that calls for drastic change across the continent.
In the corporate world, many companies like Danish energy solutions from LOGSTOR are similarly aligning their own efforts with these goals.
An organisation specialising in district heating solutions, LOGSTOR has helped to revolutionise the energy sector globally with its transformational, cutting-edge, energy-efficient pre-insulated pipe systems.
“The continuous and growing pan-European expansion of pre-insulted pipes for district heating has its origins in the European Union’s climate goals – reduce climate gases, increase the share of renewable energy, and increase energy efficiency,” affirms Henrik Bjerregaard, the company’s Vice President of Corporate Relations.
Designed to minimise heat loss, pre-insulated pipes are ideal for connecting buildings to renewable heat sources such as heat pumps, biomass and surplus heat from the industry. The reduced heat loss from these systems ensures hot water can be supplied whilst system water temperature is maintained, resulting in both staunch energy efficiency improvements and significantly lower costs.
“There are other climate benefits to this too,” highlights Bjerregaard. “The more expansive the use of pre-insulated pipes in district heating systems, the lower the reliance on imported and domestic fossil fuels for domestic heating.
“Because of this, the EU has allocated some of its recovery fund towards district heating systems with sustainable pre-insulated pipes. State aid rules can be easily fulfilled in this way, as they are both work towards the EU’s climate goals and act as a strong job creator locally.”
LOGSTOR’s role as a leading supplier of pre-insulated pipe systems is, therefore, helping to enhance environmental progress. Yet this is not the only way in which LOGSTOR contributes, the company abiding by equally environmentally conscious principles and values internally.
As a manufacturer, its operations require heavy machinery that consume a lot of energy.
Because of this, the company continually works to optimise its own efficiency and reduce its carbon footprint.
In a recent audit, the firm identified key risk areas as both its high-energy consumption and polyethylene (HDPE) pallet pollution. To rectify, it pursued numerous initiatives in 2019, optimising projects to reduce foam components and HDPE material consumption, reducing waste and eliminating HDPE pallets pollution during deliveries.
The outcome of these efforts? LOGSTOR saw a five percent reduction in its energy usage, reduced waste by 20 percent and met foam and granulates components reduction targets.
“We also have a high focus on social conditions, which goes beyond environmental and climate ambitions,” states Michael Heeager Nystrup, the company’s Vice President of Sales Excellence, pointing to its human rights, anti-bribery and social and working conditions policies.
“These areas have become important focus points when planning and implementing our business strategies.”
Corporate governance is not the only way in which the company excels, however. Nystrup also points to the holistic nature of LOGSTOR’s offering, citing it as a key differentiator.
“LOGSTOR offers products with best-in-class insulation properties, optimum system design, easy installation and the most advanced service offerings,” he adds. “Our strong performance comes from the technical know-how of our people, the high quality of our products and services and continuous innovation.”
Proven by projects
Such performance is reflected in a plethora of the organisation’s projects.
In Lund, Sweden, LOGSTOR has helped to deliver the world’s largest low temperature districting heating network, utilising vast amounts of surplus low temperature heat made available from the cooling of MAX IV – the largest research facility focussed on synchrotron radiation globally.
Developed in collaboration with Lund University and Kraftringen and backed by funding from the EU’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme, the project recovers excess heat energy generated from heat pumps used to cool MAX IV, then transferring it to a low temperature district heating system that is used to heat part of the city. The result is lower heating production costs and reduced heat losses.
The Henningsdorf project in Germany is similarly impressive. A city that aims to be carbon neutral by 2025, part of this goal is set to be realised by achieving 100 percent renewable district heating.
Assisting Henningsdorf in this pursuit, LOGSTOR is integrating waste heat energy from local steelworks, large solar thermal collector fields and wind turbines into the district heating network. Biomass combined heat and power plants already contribute roughly 50 percent of the annual heat load necessary, but LOGSTOR’s additional efforts should move the needle significantly closer towards the 100 percent target.
In the Danish firm’s home country, meanwhile, it is delivering the largest district heating network made with recycled plastic casing in the world.
Here, LOGSTOR is laying 30 kilometres of piping for Aalborg Forsyning, where the outer casing is made from 100 percent recycled plastic. In total, 100 tonnes of recycled material will be used, the project expected to reduce annual CO2 production by 160 tonnes upon completion.
Powered by partners
Critical to the success of such ground breaking projects are LOGSTOR’s suppliers, LOGTOR’s Supply Director Ewa Cieślik paying tribute to both these partners and the continual efforts made to ensure the company’s supply chain comprehensively adheres to best practice at all stages.
“Our supply base plays a vital role in achieving LOGSTOR’s vision: To make global energy supply more efficient and reduce energy losses worldwide through the use of advanced insulation products, thus enhancing the environment for people in all parts of the world,” she begins.
“By working closely with our suppliers, we lessen our environmental and social impact and position ourselves for strong growth. The creation of a sustainable supply chain requires many years of transformation to integrate environmentally and financially viable practices into the complete supply chain lifecycle, from product design and development, to material selection, manufacturing, packaging, transportation, warehousing, distribution, consumption, return and disposal.”
Ensuring this chain is localised has been key, helping to keep travel and therefore excess CO2 emissions to a minimum and contributing to the company’s wider social responsibility plan.
Cieślik continues: “Important to any sustainable strategy is a collaborative approach with partners regarding new and existing product development. We focus with our partners on recycled material, the circular economy, waste management, product optimisation, alternative raw materials, reduced usage of material – and, ultimately, a lower total carbon footprint.”
The company demands that its suppliers uphold its own values, promoting suppliers such as Seal For Life that advocate energy-efficient solutions, execute efficient waste management, and comply with environmental regulations.
Further, the company also analyses data provided by its main transportation partners, enabling it to identify improvement opportunities and introduce solutions that reduce the carbon footprint of its transit activities.
“Thanks to our dedicated supply partners who are focused on sustainability, we all are able to make a real change and lower total carbon footprint,” Cieślik reiterates.
Continuing the conversation
Looking ahead, beyond this stream of project successes and supply chain achievements, LOGSTOR has numerous additional ambitions for 2021.
The organisation plans to continue using recycled materials. “We want to continue to supply the best products with the best insulation properties, but we recognise we can go beyond that to achieve simultaneous sustainability and recycling goals,” says CEO Kim Christensen.
Digitalisation is also firmly at the forefront of LOGSTOR’s mind, with new technologies offering the company the potential to monitor performance in relation to flow rates, pressure, temperature and ensuring the right amounts of water are circulated to homes.
“This industry is not currently well-digitalised,” the CEO reveals. “It’s a very tangible, practical, hardware-based industry where you connect the energy production with the energy consumption. That’s the transmission lines, the distribution and the last mileage for the consumers.
“However, digitalisation can unlock great potential by allowing us to read important data. In Europe today, an average of 20 percent of all heat that is produced never reaches consumers. Not only is this costly, as the consumer pays for it, but more importantly the climate pays for it with the immense amount of CO2 that is completed wasted.
“By having both better insulation properties and a better way to control the systems, using advanced algorithms, we can make sure that system performance is substantially improved.”
Geographic expansion is another area the company is targeting.
While uptake of district heating revisions has been welcomed in the Nordic countries, Central Europe has been less eager to acquire the benefits of such systems.
These plans to broaden LOGSTOR’s reach are not simply motivated by sales opportunities, however. Raising awareness and continuing the climate debate is also hot on the company’s agenda moving forward, indicated by Christensen’s own comments as a staunch climate advocate.
He concludes, passionately outlining this discourse: “My dream here is to make sure that we increase our penetration rate of distributing throughout Europe by of course having superior products.
“But also furthering our role in the debate with politicians, research institutes, utilities companies and consumers, to argue for and to justify why district heating is the most affordable way of achieving successful green transformation.
“Having a vision doesn’t solve the problem. It is the collaboration between all parties, all stakeholders here that makes things happen. We must educate people to understand energy systems – how you can integrate different elements to create the best energy equation, and each stakeholder has a role to play in this.
“We are focusing on collaboration.”