Integrated solutions cutting costs in heavy industry sectors

Tuesday, 15 September, 2015

Environmental solutions provider Veolia has come up with a way to help sectors such as oil and gas production reduce their operational costs while maintaining their social and environmental licence to operate.

According to Rod Naylor, Veolia’s spokesperson for Integrated by Design, the company looked at its current environmental offering to see where it could “work more closely with these businesses to integrate their water, waste and energy needs in the form of one simple integrated solution”. The answer came in the form of Plug-In solutions — a selection of technologies, services and innovations that have been designed to mimic the interconnectedness between water, waste and energy as it exists in nature.

“We’ve found that by integrating solutions, we have been able to generate cost savings to these businesses, enhance yields and productivity, and strengthen positive environmental and social impacts,” Naylor said.

In developing and deploying integrated solutions, Veolia found that one of the biggest challenges clients face themselves is that they manage water, waste and energy in operational silos within their organisations. According to Naylor, the company can “plug in the various elements needed to create integrated solutions that help businesses to respond to challenges like access to skill, regulatory pressures, competition from emerging markets and the challenge of improving yields with ageing assets.”

Additionally, clients’ need for a long-term sustainable solution has driven Veolia to seek true partnerships where value is created through cooperation and collaboration. “Through working in partnership,” said Naylor, “Veolia can also bring solutions that enhance environmental and social outcomes, aligning with corporate sustainability and CSR goals, as well as helping to secure and maintain our clients’ social licence to operate, their brand value and customer confidence.

“Being progressive and challenging a ‘business as usual’ approach through collaboration and integration has created an opportunity to generate value for our customers. Finding these synergies and places of integration in water, waste and energy is often a new approach to organisations, especially when their business is not designed to identify and capitalise on these connections.”

Veolia provides services within the oil and gas sector where integrated water management, environmental stewardship and the recovery of resources is critical. “Through our work in South-East Queensland, we’ve moved beyond simple transactional management of these services to where our water, waste and energy systems work hand in hand with our customers,” said Naylor. “This integrated approach has resulted in one client reducing some upstream production costs by up to 15% while maintaining service level standards.”

Looking beyond mining and oil and gas, there is a range of other sectors where Veolia will be delivering its range of Plug-In solutions. “Smart cities and municipal markets, healthcare and food and beverage sectors are experiencing a range of similar challenges across their core operations services, particularly when it comes to ensuring a high sustainable performance,” Naylor noted.

“That being said, the market is still very much in the early stages of understanding and pursuing the potential that comes from integrated solutions, and the more advanced the company in terms of its efficiency journey, and its maturity in working in partnership to achieve sustainable outcomes, the more it is able to capitalise on the future potential of integration.

“Whilst it is an exciting time for us to be at the leading edge of innovation in offering integrated solutions, we are looking forward to working in a market where this way of thinking and driving a circular economy approach are the expected norm.”

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