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CSC-Gold for Dyckerhoff Basal again!

Author: Remco Kerkhoven • Photos: Betonhuis • 13 december 2022

In 2018, Dyckerhoff Basal Betonmortel B.V. one of the first organizations with the Concrete Sustainability Council (CSC) silver certificate in the Netherlands. A year later, the step to gold followed. On December 12, 2022, the organization, headquartered in Nieuwegein, again achieved gold. Richie Hilgersom, CSC Product Manager and Concrete Mortar Auditor at Kiwa, presented the certificates to Niels Nijman, director, and André van Maris, KVM manager.

“All concrete plants of Dyckerhoff Basal Betonmortel B.V. have delivered a fantastic performance. It seems simple, but it certainly isn't. Nowadays you have to have certain things done. The requirements of CSC have become much stricter in three years. If you as a company have not taken any steps forward in sustainability, you will no longer get gold. Our suppliers also deserve a compliment. Many  have also certified themselves and that fits in nicely with our stakeholder engagement ”, says André van Maris, co-responsible for the theme of sustainability within the company.

Sustainable ambitions

The Concrete Sustainability Council (CSC) is a global initiative to promote the sustainable production of concrete. It is a certification system for the sustainable production of concrete and the responsible origin of raw materials that provides certainty to customers. Suppliers, such as Dyckerhoff Basal Betonmortel B.V. meet, by certification, strict requirements in the field of reliability, expertise, sustainability and occupational safety. A lot has been invested in that last point. Van Maris: “The sustainability policy of parent company Buzzi SpA forms the context within which the objectives are monitored and periodically reviewed with a view to sustainable growth over time.

The policy is based on the three most important themes for the company and the stakeholder: Safety, climate change and stakeholder engagement. Each of these, together with the respective objectives, can be related to one or more of the seventeen Sustainable Development Goals and emphasizes the concrete contribution of Dyckerhoff Basal Betonmortel B.V. to the 2030 agenda.

Safety program Together for safety

Our holding company has started a safety program with the slogan: Together for safety this program will be widely launched at the beginning of 2023. The campaign is intended to make our own employees and employees of subcontractors and collaborating parties more aware of occupational safety. In concrete terms, this means that employees must be aware of the possible dangers in the situation before they start a job and must take the necessary safety measures. If unsafe behavior is observed in others, they must be addressed and pointed out by their colleagues. With the help of posters, signs and other campaign materials, employees are repeatedly confronted with risky situations and motivated to monitor their own protective behavior and to talk to their colleagues about working safely. Accept that you will be held accountable for safety behaviour.

Employees are repeatedly confronted with risky situations using posters, signs and other campaign materials. Employees are motivated to check their own protective behavior and to talk to their colleagues about working safely. In CSC, security policy is highly valued.

Energy policy

A strong point of Dyckerhoff Basal is the energy policy. “Very high scores are achieved. Policy, implementation and signaling improvement have led to a good management system, resulting in many energy-saving measures.” Auditor Richie Hilgersom of Kiwa speaks. He saw more good points at the various concrete plants. “The policy is in good order from the head office and inspections per production location show that policy is not a paper tiger. It is well executed and you score a lot of points within CSC.” According to Van Maris, interest in non-financial information is increasing rapidly. “We are determined to continuously improve the quality and level of detail of this information. This requires a lot of attention and contributes to the statement: Sustainable development by definition means meeting the needs of the present generations without compromising the same opportunities for future generations. CSC fits in with this and that is what Dyckerhoff considers extremely important. Just like the Concrete Agreement. “We embrace this agreement and use it as a menu in order to fulfill, safeguard and unburden the needs of our stakeholders, as mentioned.”

The journey to net zero

Dyckerhoff Basal is part of Buzzi SpA. As one of the largest cement suppliers, the route to carbon neutral cement has been deployed to address the challenges associated with climate change. Two central task forces have been set up. The first is dedicated to promoting, coordinating and monitoring initiatives to reduce CO₂ emissions. The second aims to coordinate dialogue and communication with investors and financial institutions on tackling climate change. “Within Dyckerhoff, sustainability has become an important spearhead. Millions are being invested to make our products more sustainable and that gives the entire company a huge boost. In the long term, we will capture CO₂ during the production of cements, liquefy it, process it as sustainably as possible into an alternative fuel and offer it back to the industry. Our group recognizes the importance of the international community's efforts to mitigate climate change. In line with the objectives of the international climate protocols, Dyckerhoff is committed to reducing its CO₂ emissions. Following the Paris Agreement of December 2015, this commitment was extended to all countries in which the Group operates.”

André van Maris, KVM manager Dyckerhoff Basal B.V.

"It seems simple, but it certainly isn't. Nowadays you have to have certain things done. The requirements of CSC have become much stricter in three years."

CSC for the customers

Four years ago, the company started the CSC certification process. Van Maris says: “Our customers did not yet specifically ask for the quality mark, but we did see the added value. Incidentally, CSC is about more than just the environment and energy saving; it is also about the expertise as a supplier. Today, producing concrete mortar is more than just ordering a mixture. From an environmental cost indicator (EQI) to the Green Concrete Design Tool, more is being asked of us. With the CSC certificate we demonstrate that we have these skills in-house. These are things that we pay a lot of attention to.” Together with chain partners, Dyckerhoff Basal is working on Stakeholder engagement. Together with clients, the involvement in sustainable production is discussed in more detail, where are the opportunities, possibilities and also risks. “You want to do smart things together in the chain. In design and execution. But sometimes the question is (still) unrealistic. An example of this is driving on hydrogen. That is called fast, but the first hydrogen truck mixer still has to be assembled. We think along with you about alternatives and with CSC we can demonstrate that. We are doing well and sustainably and continue to develop. Finally we build and maintain relationships of trust with our customers. We are fully committed to this with our new CSC gold certificates”, concludes Van Maris.