Hub Blog


Sustainovate seminar shares how Husqvarna cut carbon footprint by 35%

Environmental sustainability is an issue that is very close to our hearts at the Port of Tyne and we’ve been very open about the changes we are making to our own business operations to achieve carbon neutrality by 2030.

Key to the success of any sustainability initiative is the need for activity to be commercially sustainable too. To that end, the recent presentation by Jonas Willaredt from Husqvarna Group was fantastic, and the work they are doing to transform their business is really inspirational. Husqvarna’s target is to cut their carbon emissions by 35% across the value chain until 2025, in line with recommendations from scientists and the Paris Agreement.

85% of all CO2 emissions are related to product usage rather than manufacturing, so low carbon solutions—involving renewable battery technology, digitalisation and autonomous working with robotics—need to play a significant role in every sustainability strategy.

Husqvarna has already succeeded in measuring a 25% reduction of carbon emissions, whilst also increasing sales by 17% (2015 baseline). This has been achieved through digital transformation of their business and the long term transition to using battery power, better packaging design and engaging with transportation partners and suppliers. It demonstrates that it is possible to lower carbon footprint but still continue business growth.

Husqvarna’s strategy focuses on three core goals: the reduction of carbon within their supply chain; utilising the circular economy for innovation, and engaging people. The company aims to reduce the extraction of earth’s materials by launching circular innovations and empowering around 5 million people to make more sustainable choices. It provides a brilliant case study for any organisation to model, with a commitment to launch 50 new circular innovations by 2025. One of these is an ingenious vending machine installed in the community for renting garden power tools.

One of the key drivers of sustainability adoption is the ‘ripple effect’, starting internally but expanding the sphere of influence to others. That’s one of the benefits of the 2050 Maritime Innovation Hub. By providing opportunities to celebrate best practice in sustainability, we share knowledge and can inspire other organisations within maritime to follow suit.

Today’s Sustainovate seminar highlighted six key learnings:

  • Sustainability initiatives must be driven and promoted from the top of an organisation to be successful and as many people within the organisation as possible should be involved in the innovation process;
  • Difficult commercial choices may need to be made to ensure the right outcomes for the environment and the future.
  • Going forward, mass acceptance of the shift to sustainable alternatives will be led by the customer and not only by increased regulation;
  • Digital transformation is integral to increasing the prevalence of the shared economy through increased customer acceptance;
  • As important as product design is the consideration of second life and final stage utilisation.  Recycling of end of life products needs to be considered from the outset, at the R&D stages of product development;
  • Collaboration across the supply chain and between industries will become even more important as the circular economy gains in importance

Transportation is behind around 40% of global CO2 emissions and we all need to work together in finding better solutions for the supply chain. Maritime will play an increasingly important role in our sustainable economic future as more environmentally efficient solutions for transporting goods are increasingly sought after. By providing opportunities to connect and collaborate, share knowledge and learn from best practice, the 2050 Maritime Innovation Hub can play its part and influence this journey.

If you would like to be inspired by some of the best business thinkers, network with leading organisations and collaborate with great minds—not just in the maritime sector but many other industries—sign up for future 2050 Maritime Innovation Hub events:

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