Environmental issues are one of the largest challenges that face the fisheries sector, and considerable efforts have been spent on digitally mapping the environmental impact of the company and reducing such negative impact. These efforts have, in recent years, had the effect of annual reductions in the emission of greenhouse gases. The emission of greenhouse gases from HB Grandi fell by 9.8% in 2017 as compared with 2016, even though the total catch increased during the same period from 141,855 tonnes to 152,868 tonnes.
The reason can be traced to a number of factors and events, including the fact that the year began with the fishermen’s strike that lasted to the middle of February. Fewer and more efficient vessels now utilise fuel better than before; with the renewal of the fleet, HB Grandi has completely discontinued the use of heavy fuel oil and at the same time, increased the use of more eco-friendly energy sources such as connecting vessels to land-based electricity when they dock. The same applies to the company’s fish meal plants which were previously run on fossil fuels but are now for the most part run on electricity. This is also true of other processing plants on land, which have long been run on electricity and have been developed to fully utilise all raw materials, minimise waste and create increased value at the same time.
The environmental dashboard of HB Grandi digitally shows all the main aspects of the company’s environmental issues, making it possible to support its goal for an improved emission footprint and the measures taken from time to time. In order to ensure the reliability and frequency of the environmental results of HB Grandi, the collection of environmental information is based on automated data collection from the main operations and suppliers of the company. This makes it possible to monitor the benefits of individual measures taken in environmental matters.
The fisheries resources in the waters around Iceland are renewable provided that they are harvested in a sustainable manner. The excellent success of the Icelandic fisheries sector in environmental matters is, therefore, not least due to its sustainable use of fish stocks. The scientific precautionary approach in making decisions on catch rules for each species of fish is the basis of the catch quota. Fish stocks are in better shape after the current fishing management system was adopted; it is easier to plan fishing operations and easier for the ships to find their catch, and as a result, fishing trips are shorter. Sustainable fishing has encouraged innovation, as more attention has been paid to the better utilisation of the catch and solutions sought to create greater value and reduce costs.
HB Grandi takes an active part in collaboration involving the sustainable use of fish stocks, quality and responsibility with respect to the environment and society. The goal of HB Grandi’s participation is to support the continued strengthening of fish stocks, progress in the company and the sector, increased collaboration and to secure market access.
The Iceland Responsible Fisheries Foundation (Ábyrgar fiskveiðar ses.) owns and operates the brand Iceland Responsible Fisheries. The Foundation provides certification for the responsible fisheries of Iceland and the source of its marine products. The marketing of the label is in the hands of Promote Iceland (Íslandsstofa), and HB Grandi has a representative on the Board of Iceland Responsive Fisheries and the Fisheries Advisory Board at Promote Iceland.
HB Grandi, moreover, has a shareholding in Icelandic Sustainable Fisheries ehf., which has the role of obtaining certification with respect to the standards of the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC). Participation in the association provides access to MSC certification of the fish stocks in Icelandic waters.
HB Grandi is also a sponsor of the Global Sustainable Seafood Initiative (GSSI). The object of the operation of GSSI is to increase transparency in the certification of sustainability in the fisheries and aquaculture sectors. Companies who are members of GSSI have undertaken to recognise certification projects that pass GSSI audits when the sale of marine products are involved.
International concerns about rising pollution on land and at sea have intensified the need for an international campaign against the continued increase of pollution. Iceland will seek to attain the goal shared with EU states and Norway for a 40% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions below the 1990 level before 2030, on fulfilment of certain criteria. There are many indications that the condition of the ocean is changing rapidly for the worse and that the acidification of the sea, global warming and other environmental factors will threaten the ecosystems of the sea and the earth in the near future.
The pollution of the sea is a direct threat to the results of the fisheries sector in Iceland. HB Grandi will seek any means to reduce pollution from its own operations and continue to develop its operation toward sustainable fishing and processing. In tune with this policy, HB Grandi signed, together with 103 other Icelandic companies and public bodies, a declaration on goals in climate issues on 16 November 2015 in Höfði. The declaration was delivered in connection with the UN Climate Conference held in Paris in December 2015. The City of Reykjavík and Festa, the Icelandic Centre for Corporate Social Responsibility, have managed the declaration from the companies and follow up on it by means of educational courses that have been offered in connection with the project. The goals of the climate project are to:
The emission of greenhouse gases decreased by 9.8% between 2016 and 2017, and there has been some success in decreasing the proportion of waste sent to landfills. Information on achievements in environmental issues are now published for the second time.
By systematically recording the environmental aspects of our operation, we gain a better view of the status in real time and an accurate overview of the development of the issues so we can see where we can make improvements. HB Grandi has initiated an extensive environmental project under the title Cleaner Value Chain in Fisheries.
All environmental information relating to the operation of the company is digitally streamed from its place of origin, whether at sea or on land, into an environmental database. The database makes the information accessible to the company’s responsible parties for the purpose of using the information systematically for actions that have the purpose of reducing the environmental impact of HB Grandi operations. A proportion of the software ensures that HB Grandi can fulfil environmental legislation as current and can also provide the authorities access for digital monitoring. Although the software was brought into use in June 2016, it will continue to be developed, and its adoption within the company is presently in full swing.
The project includes the following main aspects:
This involves the use of technological knowledge to develop at HB Grandi new and improved processes that will revolutionise the ability of the company to manage its operations in tune with goals in the field of environmental and energy management.
Fuel use by the vessels of HB Grandi has been significantly reduced following mergers with a number of fisheries companies since 1985. The restructuring has meant that well over 10 vessels have been removed from operation. At present, HB Grandi operates eight vessels, one less than in 1985, despite all the mergers with other companies after the merger of BÚR and Ísbjörnin. These mergers have meant that the company’s quota has almost tripled even though the number of vessels has not increased. There have been comparable developments among other fisheries companies throughout Iceland.
Extensive technological advancements have been made over recent years, and considerable new knowledge and expertise has been gained in the fisheries industry. In addition, there has been considerable progress in fish-finding technology, developments of fishing gear, fishing techniques and the handling of catches on board vessels. For these reasons and others, the catch per unit effort (CPUE) has almost tripled during the period.
The proportion of marine gas oil increased from 1.7% in 2016 to 31.2% in 2017. Since the use of heavy fuel oil was discontinued, the discharge of pollutants due to the burning of fossil fuels, such as sulphur, nitrogen oxide and particulate matter (PM), has become an insignificant proportion of the company’s emissions.
The following figure shows the fuel use of HB Grandi over the past two years.
Vessel fuel use decreased by two million litres between 2016 and 2017, or by 9.5%. The goal of the company is to further reduce the fuel use of the fleet through the purchase of new vessels and the adoption of powerful information technology that ensures a comprehensive real-time overview of the fuel use of the fleet. The decision was made in 2017 to completely discontinue the use of heavy fuel oil in HB Grandi vessels.
The company’s fish meal plants, previously run on fossil fuel, are now for the most part electrified, and every effort is made to use electricity instead of fuel when availability allows. The fuel use of the fish meal plants decreased by 24% between 2016 and 2017. The use of heavy fuel oil for the production of fish meal was stopped completely in 2017. Instead of heavy fuel oil, MDO (marine diesel oil) is now used in Akranes and MGO (marine gas oil) is used in Vopnafjörður. Both have significantly less environmental impact than heavy fuel oil.
The company’s goal is to switch to even further environmentally friendly fuel types over the next few years. Through agreements for competitive electricity prices to fish meal plants, we can expect the share of electricity use to increase at the expense of oil use in the future.
The fuel use of vehicles and equipment is minimal when compared to the vessel fleet but increased by 25% between 2016 and 2017. The use amounts to 57,231 litres, which is equivalent to the average use of 2,290 litres per car owned by HB Grandi.
HB Grandi has brought in three electric vehicles and two hybrid vehicles over the past three years. At the same time, the company has installed charging stations for the vehicles of the company, its employees and guests.
In 2017, the electricity use of HB Grandi was 63,062,436 kWh, while in 2016, the electricity use was 48,690,008 kWh. The increase in electricity use, therefore, was almost 30%. This positive development in the use of renewable energy has made it possible for the company to considerably reduce the use of fossil fuels. During 2016, the company’s access to electricity was severely limited, which meant that fossil fuels were used instead of electricity.
Electricity in Iceland is green, and it is therefore important to use electricity instead of fossil fuels whenever possible. The main opportunity that HB Grandi has to use electricity instead of fossil fuels is in the production of fish meal. In addition, there is the possibility of connecting the company’s fishing vessels to land-based electricity when they are tied up in port. Work will continue on both projects in the coming years.
We sort waste, whether from at sea or on land, and recycle to the extent possible. HB Grandi has, in recent years, organised extensive sorting and environmental operations with the goal of minimising the volume of the company’s waste sent to landfills. The waste sorting project began eight years ago in Vopnafjörður on the initiative of the employees, and at present, waste sorting stations are operated in all the company’s operating units. These accept waste from both the vessels and from land-based operations. Considerable success has been achieved during the year, and the proportion of sorted waste has reached 78%.
HB Grandi has three fully equipped sorting stations for, on the one hand, general waste and on the other hand, for recyclable raw materials. These three sorting stations, Bragginn in Vopnafjörður, Kistan in Akranes and Svanurinn in Reykjavík, are fully equipped sorting stations where digital solutions are used as regards the recording of both general waste and recyclable material.
A “smart container” is used for general waste, which is sent for the most part to landfills. All waste put in the container is registered to the department responsible for that waste. The container is equipped with scales that return information on the volume of waste to the environmental database of the company. All recyclable raw materials are sorted in accordance with a defined sorting system. Each recyclable category is weighed by “smart scales” and labelled with its processing path in the environmental database of the company.
The environmental database of HB Grandi contains detailed information of all waste records, i.e. volume, type, processing path, disposal method and origin of general waste.
The first smart container became a reality in August 2017 in Kistan, HB Grandi’s sorting station in Akranes. HB Grandi employs specially trained employees who work under the best conditions in the operating units of the company at specially equipped sorting stations. Smart containers and smart scales will, moreover, be installed in Vopnafjörður and in Reykjavík at the beginning of 2018.
All HB Grandi vessels regularly produce waste oil that is sent for recycling to Olíudreifing ehf. and Skeljungur hf. Olíudreifing and Skeljungur are contractors for the Recycling Fund for the collection and recycling of waste oil according to an agreement with the Recycling Fund, and the operation is funded through a recycling fee that is levied on imported lubricants according to law.
Waste oil results for the most part from lubricant renewals in the engines of the vessels, but also, to a lesser extent, from fuel oils and hydraulic fluids. It is recycled and sold as factory oil. This waste oil is collected by the vessels into a special tank located on board the vessels and is managed by the engineer. The tank is emptied as needed into a tanker that the recycling entity sends to the vessel when the tank needs to be emptied.
Hampiðjan accepts all fishing gear waste from HB Grandi. The crews of the company’s vessels or the employees of the sorting stations cut off various parts that can be reused. Hampiðjan cuts off the usable parts that remain. The unusable material sections are set apart and sent to landfills in Iceland. Hampiðjan sends all recyclable fishing gear waste overseas where it is sold to foreign recycling stations.
The recycling stations wash the fishing gear waste and grind it into small particles that are then sorted automatically using the appropriate technology. The final product is raw material used to make plastics. Trawl wires are chopped into ground cables that HB Grandi reuses.
Hampiðjan works closely with Fisheries Iceland (Samtök fyrirtækja í sjávarútvegi, SFS) and submits to SFS figures on the exported volume of fishing gear waste from HB Grandi and other fisheries companies. SFS then forwards the information to the Recycling Fund according to an agreement with the Fund.
SFS has an agreement with the Recycling Fund under which the association is responsible for ensuring that waste fishing gear made of synthetic materials is recycled. At the same time, authorisations for exemptions from recycling fees levied on fishing gear made from synthetic materials are utilised. No return fees are collected. Instead, SFS undertakes responsibility for the project on behalf of the fisheries industry.
There were no mishaps during the year where fishing gear was lost at sea.
The object of the transport policy of HB Grandi is to encourage its employees to use eco-friendly, economic and healthy modes of travel. In addition, the company wishes to be a role model by increasing employee awareness of eco-friendly transportation and at the same time, make a contribution toward improving the environment and the health of its employees and others.
The company, therefore, offers a transport agreement to employees who have been employed for three months or who are permanently employed and can undertake to use eco-friendly transport methods to and from work, e.g. by walking, cycling, running or using public transport. The agreement is effective for a maximum of twelve months as of its signing and may be terminated by either party with one month’s notice.
At the close of 2017, 156 HB Grandi employees had entered into a transport agreement.
The environmental results below contain an overview of the main aspects of environmental issues at HB Grandi. The data includes all the operations of HB Grandi with the exception of its subsidiaries.
The methodology used to define its own value chain and its pollution factors is based on the Greenhouse Gas Protocol, a standardised methodology that numerous companies have adopted with good results.
|Carbon footprint total||tCO2í||65.333||58.959|
|Reduction in emissions||4,7%||9,8%|
|Energy due to the use of fossil fuels||kWh||271.398.866||243.089.969|
|Energy from hot water for building heating||kWh||31.955.872||41.388.581|
|Total energy use||kWh||352.044.746||347.540.986|
|Fuel use of vehicles and equipment||Litres||45.925||57.231|
|Fuel use, fish meal plant||Litres||1.431.892||1.052.625|
|Fleet fuel use||Litres||21.858.285||19.792.119|
|Total fuel use||Litres||23.336.102||20.901.975|
|Proportion of renewable energy||%||22,9%||30,1%|
|Proportion of renewable electricity||%||100%||100%|
|MGO proportion of total||%||1,7%||31,2%|
|Use of potable water|
|Total use of potable water||m3||768.998||732.604|
|Formation of waste and processing|
|Total volume of waste||kg||1.623.520||1.126.673|
|General waste from operations||-||852.470||835.667|
|Whereof sorted waste||-||496.903||652.603|
|Whereof unsorted waste||-||355.567||183.064|
|Proportion of sorted waste from operations||%||58,3%||78,1%|
|Organic waste from production processes||kg||195.010||131.186|
|Proportion of sorted waste (incl. constr. waste)||%||78,1%||80,8%|
|Operations waste to recycling||kg||461.288||591.120|
|Operations waste to landfill||kg||391.182||244.547|
|Proportion of recycled operations waste||%||54,1%||70,7%|
|Office paper use|
|Total volume of printed paper||Pages||172.665||184.275|
|Whereof colour printed||-||111.066||131.605|
|Whereof black/white printed||-||61.599||52.670|
|Whereof printed on both sides||-||42.948||41.552|
|Wetfish trawler catches||tonnes||25.277||24.548|
|Pelagic vessel catches||tonnes||95.594||109.281|
|Freezer trawler catches||tonnes||20.984||19.039|
|Fleet fuel use|
|Wetfish trawler fuel use||-||6.145.171||5.826.412|
|Fuel use / caught tonnes (CT)||L/CT||243||237|
|GHG emissions of wetfish trawlers||tCO2í||17.108||16.221|
|GHG emissions / caught tonnes (CT)||tCO2í/CT||0,68||0,66|
|Fuel use of pelagic vessels||Litres||6.277.210||6.593.351|
|Fuel use / caught tonnes (CT)||L/CT||65,67||60,33|
|GHG emissions from pelagic vessels||tCO2í||17.476||18.356|
|GHG emissions / caught tonnes (CT)||tCO2í/CT||0,18||0,17|
|Freezer trawler fuel use||Litres||9.225.905||7.372.356|
|Fuel use / caught tonnes (CT)||L/CT||440||387|
|GHG emission of freezer trawlers||tCO2í||25.685||20.525|
|GHG emissions / caught tonnes (CT)||tCO2í/CT||1,22||1,08|
|Total fleet fuel use||Litres||21.648.286||19.792.119|
|Number of man-years||No. of man-years||859||839|
|Total carbon tax||ISK||142.479.579||133.640.141|
|Number of structures||No.||26||26|
|Size of structures||m2||59.394||59.394|
|Number of vessels in operation on average during year||No.||9,0||8,9|
|Whereof wetfish trawlers||-||4,0||4,0|
|Whereof freezer trawlers||-||3,0||2,9|
|Whereof pelagic trawlers||-||2,0||2,0|
|Number of vehicles||No.||-||25|
|Whereof electric cars||-||-||3|
|Whereof hybrid cars||-||-||2|