IMPACT REPORT 2020
Welcome to the Tibber Universe!
We hereby invite you on a journey through our corner of the galaxy. On the way you can learn about the megatrends that will turn the energy sector upside-down, the Tibber mission to empower consumers to use electricity smarter, and our work with the Sustainable Development Goals. This is our Impact Report 2020.
Why are we here?
That is a very existential question! The short answer is that Tibber came to life to help normal (and not so normal) people to take control of their electricity consumption. The long answer is very interesting, but takes a while to read, so we have summarized it for you: Ever since the invention of the light bulb, electricity companies have been doing one thing and one thing only. They sell electricity to consumers, and the more they sell, the more money they make. That's cool if you are an electricity company, not so cool if you are a consumer with a monthly budget. Even less cool if you are a planet trying to survive increased activity from humans. So can this go on forever? Of course not. There are four megatrends within the energy industry that will change everything:
Climate change is acute and we must switch from fossil to renewable energy. Enough said, we need to move fast!
With home energy production everyone can participate in the bigger energy ecosystem. “Glocal” is the new buzzword for you.
Internet! We can connect smart technology to optimize and control the production and consumption of energy.
(The elephant in the room for "big corp") Consumers will have the power over their own energy production and consumption.
Pretty exciting times, right? But our journey doesn't end here – it has actually just begun. In 2016, Daniel and Edgeir quit their jobs and bet their savings that it's possible to sell electricity without making a profit from electricity consumption. A bold move, considering 150 years of energy history and a phenomenon we in the Nordics call “the law of Jante” (where thinking outside the box is considered highly inappropriate). This means that Tibber was founded with the purpose of empowering the consumer. Our technology helps people buy electricity from a renewable source, reduce their electricity consumption and sell surplus energy and flexibility back to the power grid. Everything through an app. Control is, literally, in the hands of (you) the consumer. Four megatrends, one solution, you might say.
A way forward
Or, how does Tibber create value for consumers and the industry in the long run? Let's have a look at it from the perspective of the most kick-ass goals for humanity that we know of – the Sustainable Development Goals. The seventeen SDGs were developed by the UN in a call to action for a global partnership to fight and improve everything from poverty to education, and everything in between. All of them great, but a select few really underlines our value proposition in a good way.
7. Affordable and clean energy
Our trading technology provides consumers with renewable electricity at a purchase price, and we don't profit from their consumption.
8. Decent work and economic growth
To address risks in our value chain, we do Life Cycle Assessments on our hardware products, and will continue with addressing social conditions through our suppliers.
9. Industry, innovation and infrastructure
Our home energy management technology, such as smart heating, offers more flexibility on the consumer side, making the power grid more efficient.
11. Sustainable cities and communities
Our home energy management technology, such as smart EV charging, facilitates the shift towards cleaner transport systems.
12. Responsible consumption and production
We fix defective and used electronics instead of wasting it. We use smart home technology to help people reduce their electricity consumption.
13. Climate action
We use tools such as carbon reporting and Life Cycle Assessments to track, measure and reduce the environmental footprint from our activities.
17. Partnerships for the goals
We are a member of the UN Global Compact, an organisation that helps businesses set goals and report on their progress towards the SDGs.
Through an investigation we conducted last year we learned what kind of impact we have on the world around us. It was a very interesting experiment to say the least and we gained some really important insights. For us to be able to minimize the negative and maximize the positive impact in relation to the SDGs, these are the topics we need to focus on:
Conducting good business
Positive social impact
Inspire a movement
1. CLIMATE ACTION
We are not climate neutral!
Or, why would we miss out on a “green” marketing opportunity? It's because we don't use climate certificates as a quick-fix solution. Rather, we think it makes more sense to first reduce the environmental footprint from our own activities, and then come up with creative ways to engage partners, customers and employees in our efforts. That is much more challenging, fun and effective! To make progress with this, here are the top 4 areas we need to look at:
Yes! Even if you buy only renewable energy, it has an environmental cost. These are calculated Life Cycle Costs from production and transmission of renewable energy 6164 tonnes CO2e
This is the environmental cost that is calculated from production, transport and use of hardware developed by Tibber 135 tonnes CO2e
These are emissions calculated from the transport of products to and from Tibber Store
119 tonnes CO2e
The environmental footprint from electricity, heating and waste generated from Tibber office operations 46 tonnes CO2e
As you can see, there's no time to rest. Here are some things we have done to improve.
Tibber Pulse is a product that we make ourselves - it's a tiny, but hard-working device that monitors your electricity consumption in real-time. Not in a creepy way of course, but to give you the insights you need to use electricity smarter. We tried to find out what it costs the environment to make one - the answer is 8.2 kg of CO2 equivalents.
The fight against electronic waste
According to the smart people at The Global E-waste Monitor, more than 50 million tonnes of electronic waste is generated globally per year. Only 17,4 percent of this waste is recycled. It’s a brilliant report, but the presented facts are frightening. Totally against the Tibber Way. So we decided to fix all returned Tibber Pulse devices and open a second-hand sale in our web store. We donated the revenue towards WWF's fight against plastic in the oceans.
2. CONDUCTING GOOD BUSINESS
What do we want? Transparency!
When do we want it? Now! Not being open about sustainability challenges in the value chain has become quite old-fashioned. At Tibber we want to talk more about the imperfections, the crooked carrots if you like, of our sector. First up, let’s have a look at the energy value chain and how we work to improve it.
Physical value chain (fairly straight forward)
Energy is produced at a cost. Mostly it involves money, equipment, labor and natural resources. All costs should be transparent for the world to see. We have calculated Life Cycle Costs for all our power purchases.
Energy is mixed into the power grid depending on availability. Sometimes the mix is greener, sometimes it's more greyish. Sometimes the traffic is high, sometimes it's low. Grid owners’ mantra: perfect balance between supply and demand.
The grid is not so smart on its own, but if we can add smart technology on the consumer side, we can balance the grid (grid owners are happy), make it more cost-effective (consumers are happy) and with a lower environmental footprint (planet is VERY happy). Like in the Norflex project, where Tibber contributes with our smart charging and heating technology.
Energy is consumed. Either by big spenders or small spenders. Sometimes we consume much and sometimes little, creating imbalances. More imbalances mean higher costs to maintain the grid. Consumers' mantra: let's consume electricity when the price is low - it's better for both your wallet and the grid.
Financial value chain (the tricky part)
A certificate that proves the production of a given volume of renewable energy. The purpose of issuing these certificates is to make it traceable and bring more renewable energy into the grid. Boom! All Tibber customers have this in their contract by default.
This is a story of its own… Prices are settled in the energy market, where producers announce their supply and buyers place their bids based on demand. Rule of thumb: high demand, higher price. Low demand, lower price. Like some invisible hand.
Here comes the crazy part. Most energy companies add a markup on your price, which gives them absolutely no incentives to help you reduce your consumption. This makes us sad. But here’s a fun fact for you to cheer things up: Tibber uses the spot price for the next day for price optimization. Our markup only covers our purchase costs, and since we can use digital trading technology, we have no margin on your consumption. Cost-effective for the producer and us, lower price for the consumer.
If you want to make sure to use your consumer super powers to purchase renewable energy, you have to ASK FOR IT. Otherwise, you will pay for whatever is in the grid at that time. Your proof is the Guarantee of Origin. You can frame it and hang it on the wall!
Business that counts in 2020
A very tough and important task for any company in general, but for a fast-growing start-up specifically, is to guarantee healthy supply chains and quality management. Luckily, we have dedicated people who love systems, logistics and negotiations, and they have worked on some improvements. Here’s what we are doing.
Projects that count in 2020
In all modesty, one of the coolest things about Tibber is our grid balancing technology. So if you were excited about the previous section, you are in for a real treat now. This is about how smart consumers can save the world, one power station at a time.
In 2020, Tibber participated in several projects, demonstrating how smart home technology can make the grid more efficient, and reduce the need for infrastructure upgrades. One of them is Norflex. In this project, Tibber pooled together flexibility from two different device types (panel heaters and EV chargers) in multiple homes, and offered this aggregated flexibility to the local grid owner Agder Energi Nett in an automated process. It might sound like magic, and it kind of is!
3. POSITIVE SOCIAL IMPACT
Finally to our second favorite section. (Our number one pet topic is being inspired by our customers, and trying our best to inspire them back. So stay with us a little bit longer for that!). But now, a little sneak peek into how we work with company culture. Leading by example inspires others to change. But change is tough! So we invited our employees to a 30-day challenge – to provide an opportunity to reflect on what change means and what we can do to make it happen around us.
“This made me realize that it's not only a challenge for myself to change my habits. The big task is to change systems and structures in society, to make it more accessible and easier to make the right choices.”
“I was surprised by how much my efforts affected people around me in a positive way. Change is really a social project, but it starts with me.”
No unnecessary stuff
“I tried to avoid buying anything unnecessary for 30 days. I liked it - my kids didn't...”
“By investing just a little in myself every day, made me have more energy, understanding and love for others as well. If you want to change something - you have to start by seeing yourself.”
“If you go to the supermarket intent on avoiding any plastic, you'll be lucky to leave with more than an apple!”
“For me, sustainable change is about taking one step at a time in the right direction. If you do stuff too extensively you risk falling back on old (destructive) behaviors.”
4. INSPIRE A MOVEMENT
If we can do it, you can too! We never get tired of inspiring insights from our customers. So we collected a few stories about people with a passion for saving energy, smart technology and a greener lifestyle. Let's give it up for some of our favorite Tibber-tribe heroes! You are an inspiration for us all.
Joakim Ambrosson has managed to reduce his energy consumption by 75%! But he doesn't stop there. He has also started a Facebook group for energy-saving enthusiasts, with tips, tricks and inspiration. Really awesome if you ask us!
Thomas Friis-Eriksen is the unlikely solar king in the rainy city of Bergen… His decision to install solar panels and to sell surplus production to the grid has inspired his neighbors to do the same. We're impressed! (This is how to inspire a movement)
Elisabet Kjerstad Bøe - we couldn't resist the temptation to also mention Tibber's own “sustainability queen”. Her house has an energy-efficient fjord heating system, solar panels, massive wood and thermal walls, and is built with low impact, reused and local materials. Pretty cool!
The bright future ahead
Welcome 2021! We're pretty excited about you! We will never stop working to improve, and we're positive Tibber will be an even better version of itself as the years go by. But let's focus on the moment we're in. Here are some of the things we plan to do before 23:59 on the 31st of December 2021.
With 2020 as our baseline, we are now consulting with people who are in the know about climate change, and we hope to conclude on our short and long-term targets in 2021.
Reduction of our scope 1-3 emissions. These are direct emissions from owned resources, indirect emissions from purchased energy and indirect emissions from our value chain.
Managing our scope 4 emissions. These are avoided emissions from our products and services. Remember: the most sustainable energy is the one you never use!
Conducting good business
Workshops dedicated to the Sustainable Development Goals with our three closest partners and suppliers. Five if the stars are aligned.
Development projects aimed at improving the energy value chain, such as better matching of production and consumption of renewable energy (It has to do with the Guarantees of Origin we told you about earlier. If we succeed, it will be big news, and you'll be the first to know).
Positive social impact
(Actually, this is a conspiracy to attract the smartest and most passionate people to work with us).
A new sustainability challenge within the Tibber Tribe.
A more systematic approach to diversity and talent development in our workforce.
Inspire a movement
Develop new features in the app to make it even more engaging and inspiring for consumers to reduce their electricity consumption. You're hereby invited to the launch!
Engage one or more partners in a community challenge to raise awareness of the importance to reduce electricity consumption.
Wow, are you still here? Thank you for sticking with us to the end of our very first Impact Report. We hope you enjoyed it, and we already look forward to seeing you again next year!
xoxo, the Tibber Tribe