Increasing the emissions and energy efficiency at our sites

To improve the efficiency of our buildings, we inspect and assess each and every site and, as part of our environmental and energy management system, develop appropriate efficiency strategies:

  • Use of modern lighting technologies and heating and cooling systems with intelligent controls (“burn less”)
  • Use of electricity from renewable energy sources such as wind, hydropower, solar and biomass (“burn clean”)

All solutions are designed to be commercially viable for the occupation period of each building, depending on whether the property is leased or owned by us. Technical measures are just one element in our efforts to improve the efficiency of our buildings. The employees working at our sites also play a key role.

Power consumption at Deutsche Post DHL Group in 2016¹

Power consumption at Deutsche Post DHL Group in 2016

Energy consumption in our buildings and facilities in 2016 was 3,489 kWh – a 12% increase over the previous year. The share of electricity from renewable sources remains at over 60%. In Belgium, Germany, France, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, the UK, and the US, we refrain almost entirely from using electricity from conventional energy sources and obtain over 90% of our energy needs from renewable sources. Through our use of renewable energy we were able to save 0.44 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions in 2016. The multi-year overview of the complete energy consumption data can be found in the Annex of this report.

In addition to reducing our greenhouse gas emissions and improving energy efficiency, we are also intent on reducing noise pollution. At sites located in or near residential areas, our local management works closely together with residents and other stakeholders to ensure that noise pollution caused by our business activity is reduced to an acceptable minimum.

Major building management projects

Our building management focuses mainly on measures that reduce energy demand and thus greenhouse gas emissions (“burn less”). Major projects at our sites in 2016 included the following:

  • Energy consumption and monitoring systems
    As planned we began introducing smart meterIntelligente Messeinrichtung, die detaillierte Strom- und Gasverbrauchsdaten aufzeichnet und auf Grund der taggenauen Protokollierung Einsparpotenziale aufdeckt. technology to sites in Germany in 2016; currently this technology is already being used at over 300 sites. A total of some 320 sites are scheduled for the upgrade and we plan to complete this process by the end of 2017.
  • Lighting systems
    We conducted lighting analyses at 158 of our sites in Europe and Asia in the reporting year. As a result, more efficient solutions were rolled out or initiated at 55 of these sites. We continued to refit our mail sorting centers in Germany with more efficient and cost-effective LED technology as planned. Seventeen mail sorting centers were refitted with LED technology in 2016, which means that to date 28 out of a total of 86 mail sorting centers have already been equipped with LED lighting. We plan to upgrade an additional 22 mail sorting centers in 2017. The project will be completed in 2019.
  • Energy-efficient heating systems
    Twenty parcel centers in Germany were fitted with combined heating and power units – 25% of the electricity requirement at these sites is now generated by the combined heat and power systems. In addition, the thermal discharge (waste heat) generates up to 50% of the hot water needed at the respective sites. In 2017 we plan to convert the remaining seven parcel centers to combined heat and power.

Examples of construction projects

  • Our new Express facility at London’s Heathrow Airport was awarded a rating of “excellent” from BREEAM, a sustainability certification program in the UK, for its use of sustainable materials, optimization of energy and water efficiency, and resource saving measures. The certification also recognized other aspects, including noise abatement, air quality and the integration of charging stations for electric vehicles.
  • In Obertshausen we launched operations at what is now Germany’s largest parcel center. Fitted with a photovoltaic installation and combined heat and power unit coupled to a condensing boiler, the Obertshausen parcel center is capable of generating all of the electricity needed for its operation. Outdoor facilities, operational buildings, corridors and washrooms are all fitted with energy efficient LED lighting. In addition, free cooling technologies enable highly efficient air conditioning in server rooms.
  • We also installed 3,000 solar panels at our new 24-hour South Asia Express hub at the Singapore Changi Airport. With an output of 950 megawatt hours per year, this on-site solar installation generates approximately 20% of the hub’s total power requirements.
  • In the reporting year we also conducted feasibility tests on new technologies for use in our sites. The first phase of our pilot project in Australia, which involved testing heat reflective paint at a logistics facility, was brought to a successful close in the reporting year. Applied to the roof, the special paint reflects a significant portion of incoming sunlight, reducing air conditioning costs as a result. The three-month pilot test cut cooling requirements by more than 20% and kept indoor temperatures from rising above 25°C. The second stage of the pilot will measure the paint’s impact over the course of an entire year.