Environmental investments and expenditure
Outokumpu's investments in the 2000s have added up to over 400 million euros, mainly related to projects to improve energy efficiency and dedusting equipment in several units as well as acid regeneration plants in Sweden and Germany.
In 2015 costs for environment-related activities were 89 million euros in 2015 of which costs associated with operational environmental management totaled 81 million euros. Operational costs include process-related treatment, disposal and remediation costs for waste and emissions into air and water. 40.5% of the environmental expenditure was for air and climate change, 31% for water protection, 8.9% for waste management and 0.5% for soil and ground water. Provisions and guarantees in connection with environmental consideration totaled 63 million euros, including provisions for the aftercare of former mining sites of 1.4 million euros.
In Tornio, Outokumpu participates in the liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal investments in 2015-2018. Tornio is today the biggest consumer of propane in Finland. The terminal is expected to be in operation during the first half of 2018. The investment will decrease Outokumpu's CO2 and NOX emissions by an estimated 10%.
Research and development
Process development focus areas include energy and material efficiency, quality and by-product utilization: the very essential areas of environmental performance.
Best Available Technology (BAT)
One of Outokumpu’s operating principles is to use best available techniques (BAT) to reduce emissions and minimize harmful environmental impacts that could result from the Group’s operations. In this context, BAT means the best available pollution prevention technology from both technical and economic perspectives. Outokumpu is also an active participant in the process of updating the reference documents (BREFs), which specify related technologies, helping to set the high standards applicable within the European Union.
Outokumpu is a part of international associations such as ISSF and Euro Inox. Active involvement in national research programs, European R&D projects. Education programs and thesis work are part of our systematic approach. Outokumpu supports students and researchers through two foundations: the Outokumpu Stainless Research Foundation and the Foundation of Finnish Steel and Metal Producers.