Sustainable networking is vital to the future of our global society. Malin Clarstedt, Group Sustainability and Quality Manager, joined Arelion in August 2022 to further drive our sustainability strategy. We spoke with Malin to learn more about her vision of sustainable connectivity at Arelion through Environmental, Social, Governance (ESG) initiatives, circularity, lifecycle management and more.
“Connecting a sustainable future”
Q: What’s your background?
My background is in the Facility Management and Data Center industries. I started in Quality and Sustainability, eventually serving in management roles at ISS Facility Services and Coromatic AB. I’ve worked on ISO standards, goals and strategies, risk management, climate calculations and reporting. I’m passionate about innovation and standardization because an adept sustainability strategy means balancing those two factors.
I was happy to join Arelion — an organization with a proven history that continues to innovate. I’m selective in my career choices and would not have taken the position if it didn’t have the potential to drive tangible sustainability initiatives from the ground up.
Q: What does Arelion look like on the inside?
Arelion has an innovative mentality backed by the resources of an established company. I appreciate the fast-paced nature of the company because it means you can have an idea on Monday and implement it by Friday. That’s the luxury of a midsize company – making an idea come to life from scratch. You can feel the energy here surrounding sustainability. Our people are keen to make a difference.
I primarily work with the Networking team and Procurement team. However, since sustainability affects every department, my team is everyone! I’m grateful to have many experienced colleagues in Marketing, Communications, Legal and HR. There’s no shortage of resources and teammates to help you execute your vision.
My initial perception was that we have a strong environmental approach defined by a commitment to several initiatives. Learning about the company’s global reach and diverse services has been fascinating. We have a valuable opportunity to make a widespread impact through these factors.
Q: What are some of the key goals for Quality and Sustainability?
Our short-term goal is to communicate our ambitious targets to the internal organization, global partners and customers. To streamline this communication strategy, we launched a new section of our website describing our sustainability agenda, our ESG goals and the actions we’re taking to measure and hit those goals.
Our long-term goal is to fight climate change by actively working to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees in accordance with the Paris Agreement. We aim to reduce our scope 1 emissions >50% by 2030 and be NetZero (scope 1, scope 2 and applicable parts of scope 3) by 2040, with sub goals and measurements around circularity and lifecycle management. By 2040, we aim for 100% of our partners to align with these goals.
Q: How will you accomplish these goals?
This is an engaging role because I’m collaborating with coworkers to define Arelion’s sustainability journey. Fancy visionary goals are necessary. But we must ensure our vision is tangible through a commitment to action. An internal focus ensures that we practice what we preach. Internal initiatives may include policies around business travel, a plan for electrification of our company car fleet and a standardized process for operational and office waste.
As mentioned, one operational area is circularity and lifecycle management. We switch out old equipment and deploy new gear to maintain capacity while reducing energy consumption. But we don’t just discard old equipment. We dismantle that equipment to reuse, resell or recycle each piece. This defines an ambitious operational goal – to reuse or recycle 100% of our decommissioned equipment. We will accomplish our internal and external goals by constantly improving and refusing to be stagnant.
Q: Anything else?
Every action has a negative or positive impact on sustainability. Big targets are important, but you must contextualize the little things within the big picture to make sustainability relatable. I value that my voice is heard as our collective sustainability goals are executed through cross-team collaboration.
Arelion handled the pandemic’s Internet traffic explosion by focusing on persistent innovation to prepare for unprecedented demand. Now, we’re applying that mindset to sustainability. With digitalization and remote work, our future increasingly depends on reducing the carbon footprint of networking through connectivity innovation. Without a sustainable network, there won’t be a sustainable future.
I’m proud to drive Arelion’s vision of connecting a sustainable future to the benefit of everyday people.
Malin Clarstedt, Group Sustainability and Quality Manager
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