Q: How does Access Engineering engage with its stakeholders?
A: Stakeholder engagement is a key priority for Access Engineering. We engage with a multitude of stakeholders – both internal and external – in our everyday business with varying levels of interests and impacts.
This is a two-way process in which we communicate our business activities to stakeholders, giving due consideration to their views and interests – thereby aligning our business model and the decision-making process, to the extent that this is practical, business conscious and sustainable.
While our frequency of engagement and mode of engagement with different stakeholders may differ, we engage with all our stakeholders at least once a year.
Q: In your opinion, what does corporate sustainability mean for an organisation?
A: I believe that corporate sustainability means creating long-term sustainable value to all our stakeholders.
Achieving corporate sustainability is about executing a corporate’s strategy to accomplish its business objectives while being congruent with the broader ESG (economic, social and governance) goals and triple bottom line (people, planet and profit) principles.
Understanding the importance of this, Access Engineering has continuously invested in plant, machinery, equipment and construction methods that are more sustainable, in that they optimise usage of materials, resulting in consuming less natural resources, energy and raw materials while minimising the impact on the environment.
We were fortunate to have been featured in the ESG Index of European Frontier Market Fund, which in fact was an external assurance of our commitment to corporate sustainability. The company has also been the continuous winner in the construction industry at the ‘Best Corporate Citizen Sustainability Award,’ which reaffirms our commitment to sustainability.
Q: Do you publish a sustainability report periodically; and if so, what information does it contain?
A: We have been producing integrated reports since 2013 – and we’ve seen a gradual improvement in our reporting parameters.
Our integrated reports – which are externally verified – are prepared in accordance with integrated reporting guidelines, GRI G4 sustainability reporting guidelines, 10 principles of the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) and goals of the United Nations Sustainable Development Group (UNSDG), in addition to all the regulatory framework and corporate governance guidelines.
Detailed information on the six broader capitals of financial, human, manufactured, social, natural and relationship are published in our reports.
In addition, our reports have been continuously appraised for excellence in reporting and transparency. Access Engineering is also the first and only construction company in Sri Lanka to be featured in Transparency International Sri Lanka’s (TISL) corporate rankings.
Q: How does the organisation identify environmental impacts and risks – and how does it aim to minimise them, in your view?
A: We are cognisant of our business and the potential influence of its operations on the environment. We have a distinct environment policy and all our employees are bound by it.
Our Environment Management System (EMS) is ISO 14001:2015 certified. We have further extended this to our supply chain where priority is given to procure materials only from ISO 14001 certified suppliers.
At Access Engineering, every project is subject to an Environment Aspect Impact Assessment (EAIA) prior its commencement. Similarly, the annual integrated audit conducted by our Assurance Partner DNV GL certifies our EMS as complying with the requirements of ISO 14001.
Furthermore, on a continuous basis, each project team has to conduct environment review meetings regularly to facilitate early detection of any unforeseen environmental threats.
We also minimise potential risks and threats to the environment, by employing cutting-edge technologies and sustainable construction techniques, as well as proper waste management, prudent resource allocation, energy saving initiatives and other relevant measures.
By pursuing these initiatives, we address the broader issues of climate change as best we possibly can.
Q: What measures does Access Engineering take to conserve energy?
A: The construction industry is responsible for the majority of energy related CO2 emissions. Recognising this, we have integrated energy management into all our systems and processes.
While we focus and strive to reduce energy consumption in our own business, Access Engineering also passes the benefits to its clients and other stakeholders by executing energy efficient designs. Most of the building projects designed and built by us have energy efficient and energy saving features.
Our energy consumption is reduced through various means such as procuring energy efficient machinery, optimising plant operations, using renewable energy wherever possible, and providing natural ventilation and lighting whenever possible to name a few.
The air conditioning cost of our very own Access Tower II is almost 50 percent less than that of a conventional building of similar size and type. We are able to pass the benefit of this saving to our clients by way of reduced rentals and electricity rates.
We were fortunate to have been featured in the ESG Index of European Frontier Market Fund, which in fact was an external assurance of our commitment to corporate sustainability