Steps forward in responsibility were taken by Gasum in 2017 by investing in and expanding the gas market with its cooperation partners in the Nordic countries. Renewal is a key element of the Gasum strategy. Gasum entered into new partnerships in the fields of circular economy and maritime transport. Preparations for the opening up of the Finnish natural gas wholesale and retail markets were launched. There was a focus during the year on good management and leadership, employee wellbeing, and safety and security. For the first time, the Gasum Corporate Responsibility Report covers all business functions across the operating countries – Finland, Sweden and Norway.
Gasum’s key corporate responsibility and sustainability themes are derived from the Gasum strategy. These themes are carbon-neutral future and circular economy, promotion of responsibility together with stakeholders, safety and supply security, and lifecycle impact management. The company monitors progress made towards the objectives continuously.
Gasum promoted its strategy by doubling the biogas production capacity to 548 GWh (2016: 234) and increasing the supply security of liquefied natural gas (LNG) and its supply for shipping customers by introducing an LNG bunker and feeder vessel. The company’s own ship-to-ship bunkering and the new bunkering partnerships entered into in 2017 provide customers with easier access to marine LNG fuel. In addition to this, Gasum expanded the gas filling station network to also serve heavy-duty vehicles in Finland and offered renewable biogas at a fixed monthly price for cars. The cleaner energy solutions for road and maritime transport offered by Gasum help the company’s customers to reduce their carbon footprints while at the same time creating value for society by reducing the climate impact of transport.
Preparations for the opening up of the Finnish natural gas wholesale and retail markets due to take place at the beginning of 2020 were launched together with customers and stakeholder groups by coordinating the work to formulate the gas market rules relating to the new Natural Gas Market Act.
Gasum promoted the circular economy by entering into cooperation with several new partners, offering enterprises the opportunity to utilize renewable biogas made from their own waste. Biogas production is an efficient way of implementing the circular economy. Local biogas is used for heat and electricity production in industry, homes and transport. The value of side streams and biowaste can be maximized as energy and organic recycled nutrients in agriculture and gardening soil production and as nutrient concentrates in agriculture and industry. The circular economy and recycled nutrients are also strongly at the core of Gasum’s R&D activities.
Renewal is a key element of the Gasum strategy and, over a relatively short period of time, the company has transformed from a Finnish to a Nordic company and at the same time expanded its business from being a traditional natural gas supplier to a company also offering biogas and LNG. Because of this change, it is important for personnel to adopt new skills and ways of working. The company has launched the Gasum Academy to support employees’ competency development. The focal areas of the company’s human resources management are good management and leadership, employee wellbeing and safety and security, and these are developed continuously together with employees.
An extensive workplace community audit took place in the company in late 2017. The workplace community’s wellbeing at work index was 4.4 on a scale of 1 to 6. The company has around 410 employees, and 1/3 of these are female. A total of 394 employees have a permanent employment contract.
Safety and supply security
Health and safety at work are at the core of the Gasum strategy, and major efforts were made during the year in this respect. Gasum wants to make sure all of the company’s activities are safe for the various stakeholder groups, such as employees, partners and customers. The Safety First culture was strengthened through active measures, and the injury rate was reduced. The security of gas supply was at an excellent level.
Achieving a cleaner tomorrow calls for the company’s capacity to take the environment into account in all of its operations. Understanding the lifecycle impacts of natural gas, LNG and biogas is important to Gasum. Gasum seeks to minimize emissions from its own activities and offers responsible products to its customers.
In 2017, Gasum carried out improvements in various elements of environmental responsibility. The company cut methane emissions by 35% from the 2016 level and increased the production of recycled fertilizers and nutrient concentrates totaling 732,000 tonnes (2016: 252,000 t). The quality and environmental management systems were recertified.
Efficient use of energy is one of the most important actions against climate change. Gasum made a commitment to the Energy Efficiency Agreement Period 2017–2025, the overall aim of which is to reduce energy consumption by 7.5% (6,000 MWh). The energy efficiency measures taken in 2017 helped the company achieve energy savings of around 1% through developments such as improved energy efficiency at the biogas plants, the natural gas transmission network and the LNG terminals and production plants.
At Gasum economic responsibility means operating profitably and competitively. The company’s financial performance improved year on year, with the revenue totaling €925 million (2016: €843 million). Gasum is a major economic player in Finland, Sweden and Norway. Gasum generates economic value for shareholders and wants to be a reliable employer, investee and partner. The Gasum Group’s capital expenditure on intangible and tangible assets in 2017 totaled €58.1 million.
The company seeks to increase transparency in its tax reporting and facilitate a good understanding of its tax footprint. In 2017, the amount of corporation tax paid by the company totaled €32 million. The Gasum Group’s effective tax rate was 18.7%.
Reporting developed throughout the Group
Gasum reports comprehensively on responsibility issues in accordance with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) guidelines. For the first time, the 2017 report covers the entire Gasum Group’s Natural Gas, Biogas business in Sweden and Finland and LNG business in Finland, Sweden and Norway.
The Corporate Responsibility Report is available online.