SKF’s BeyondZero climate strategy, which was launched in 2005, has been revised. When it was introduced, the company had two goals in mind: to reduce the negative impact deriving from its operations; and to increase the positive environmental impact delivered by SKF solutions by innovating and offering new technologies, products and services with enhanced environmental performance characteristics. By combining these goals, BeyondZero is the company’s attempt to make an overall positive contribution towards addressing the environmental challenges faced by the planet. As a result, it considers the environmental consequences of its products and services, no matter where they occur in the value chain.

Up to now SKF has been able to measure, report and reduce the negative environmental impact from its activities, but with the revised strategy the company is setting even more ambitious targets on reducing the negative impact from its own operations, as well as helping customers address their environmental challenges. With the BeyondZero portfolio, SKF aims to set the standard for how the performance of products and services providing significant environmental benefits can be defined, measured and communicated, even when in the customer’s application. With the portfolio, the company will offer products, services and solutions which will reduce their impact on: Air (preserving the balance of the atmosphere), Earth (efficient and responsible use of the Earth’s resources), and Water (efficient and responsible use of water).

To be included in the BeyondZero portfolio, SKF products, services and solutions must be demonstrated to deliver significant environmental benefits to the customer without significant environmental trade-offs elsewhere in the product lifecycle. Solutions must also satisfy specific performance criteria when compared to a baseline established using robust methods, such as lifecycle assessment and field measurements.

According to the company, it has the potential to provide environmental improvements for customers in any industry or segment in two ways: Designed for environment; and Applied for environment. Here, the company will ‘design’ solutions which provide positive environmental impacts through their inherent characteristics. These can result in significant environmental benefits to customers. ‘Applied’ solutions provide positive environmental solutions through: those that enable the generation of renewable energy from the wind, solar and ocean power industries; and solutions that enable a certain technology or function in customer applications, which can in turn provide improved environmental performance.

Further to this, SKF has worked with the WWF to gain acceptance into the Climate Savers initiative. WWF Climate Savers is a global leadership platform transforming business and industry by finding companies who are prepared to take the lead on climate and energy solutions. The member companies set,

in agreement with WWF, sector-leading targets for greenhouse gas reduction in their own operations and work with other companies and partners to implement innovative solutions for a clean, low-carbon economy. Achievements are annually monitored and verified by an independent third party.

Although SKF has already reached a high level of energy efficiency in its operations, it aims to reduce the total annual energy use for the SKF Group by 5% below the 2006 level by 2016, and at the same time deliver a 5% year-on-year reduction of the energy use per production output.