At Sønderborg Supply employees spot the guzzlers

“This is our plotter” says Lisa Nielsen, waste manager and local project leader at Sønderborg Supply for European Enterprise’s Climate Cup.

One of the employees at Sønderborg supply pointed out that the plotter, a machine use for printing big cards, was often in a stand-by position the entire day and therefore suggested this as a place with energy savings potential. We move down the hall towards the coffeemaker, which another employee pointed out as an energy guzzler. A third is surprised by the fact that all refrigerators also contain a freezer, which is not necessary:

we have told all our 150 employees, that they must bring all of their suggestions to how we can save power/energy. There is a lot of potential” Lisa Nielsen declares.  

The many suggestions from the employees are part of an internal competition. Each suggestion receives 5 points. If the suggestion is not noticed during the energy inspection by the official energy consultant from the European Enterprise Climate Cup, this suggestion receives an additional 5 points. Sønderborg supply has thus made its own little competition with the internal pointscore and the winner with the most points, will receive a prize.


Climate strategy

The city of Sønderborg and Sønderborg supply aims at becoming CO2 neutral by 2029. Therefore a series of measures are put in place to bring down the CO2 emissions for all departments within the corporation, including the administration. Lisa Nielsen States: ”The easiest way to achieve this is to save energy. Before commencing the contest we saw an increase in energy consumption in the administration

As it turned out the European Enterprise Climate Cup was a perfect match with Sønderborg Supply climate strategy. By entering in the competition the corporation gained several practical tools for decreasing energy consumption.   


From idea to action

One of the means used is the competition between the employees. They are frequently reminded of the prize and not only does this contribute to generating new ideas, but it also inspires the employees to think about their everyday habits such as turning the lights on and off. “There is increasingly more focus on, lets say, lights burning in the cafeteria throughout the day. Maybe it is a bit sad to turn off all the light, but if we merely leave a single stripe burning, we can turn off the rest” Lisa Nielsen explains.

The enterprise had already begun some of the measures before commencing European Enterprise climate cup, like setting a timer to their info screens to turn off automatically at 5 pm.

The company now has to go through the different ideas from the employees and see how many can be put into practice. “They will be placed on a prioritized list and then we will see what to do next. By creating the competing between employees we, at the same time, also initiated expectations for us to do something. This is good because now we have to do something” Lisa Nielsen asserts.

The prize, however, remains a secret. Lisa Nielsen promise that the winner may still rejoice

Written by Thomas Kofoed Poulsen,