Acting responsibly has always been one of the principles by which the KION Group – and its brand companies – operate. they strive for a balance between environmental, economic and social considerations in their business activities. This focus on sustainability is reflected in the Group’s eco-friendly and safe products that help customers to conserve energy, reduce emissions and comply with strict workplace safety standards (see the ‘Research and development’ section). Furthermore, the KION Group ensures that its production processes have as minimal an impact on the environment as possible and that it offers safe and discrimination-free working conditions.

In 2015, the KION Group began to set up a groupwide system with which it will manage all sustainability matters across all brand companies and regions in future. To start with, a sustainability reporting procedure and system were introduced as a pilot project at LMH, incorporating its existing system for analysing environmental impact using lifecycle assessments.

The first step was to conduct a materiality assessment in which the relevant aspects of sustainability were identified. One of the main tasks was to evaluate the aspects that are particularly relevant to the most important stakeholders. LMH’s first sustainability report, which was published in December 2015, provides a detailed explanation of the brand company’s understanding of sustainability, its strategy in this area and the underlying management approach. The sustainability report is available on the LMH website at

The findings from the pilot project will be used as the basis for progressively rolling out sustainability management and reporting throughout the KION Group. Existing groupwide standards and rules of conduct will also apply.

The KION Group Code of Compliance, which was updated in April 2015, defines clear rules on various matters, including on the correct way for employees to interact with colleagues, customers, partners and the public. All other standards and initiatives relating to health, safety & environment (HSE) are derived from this code. It is available to the public on the KION Group website.

The corporate policy on workplace safety, health and the environment defines a number of requirements for the KION Group companies, including: as a minimum, complying with all relevant national laws, codes of conduct and industry standards; ensuring safe working conditions and providing employees with the necessary training; avoiding the release of pollutants, discharge and emissions into the environment as far as possible; reducing the volume of waste by making better use of raw materials and using recyclable materials; using materials, products and processes that comply with best environmental practice; and using resources, energy and raw materials efficiently.

Minimum standards for employment apply at Group level that are based on the fundamental conventions drawn up by the International Labour Organization (ILO). These include freedom of association, the right to collective bargaining, elimination of forced and child labour, and a ban on discrimination in respect of employment and occupation. Furthermore, the KION Group is committed to ensuring health and safety standards in the workplace and to paying its employees remuneration that is appropriate to the industry in the particular country and, at the very least, provides a living wage.

Aspects of sustainability have been enshrined in the KION Group’s purchasing terms since 2015. This ensures that the Group’s suppliers also strive for sustainability in their conduct.

Information on the development of the health rate and major projects in the area of health and safety in the KION Group can be found in the ‘Employees’ section.

All KION Group plants capture data about their energy consumption, volumes of waste and recycling, water consumption and emissions of greenhouse gases and volatile organic compounds (VOC). Software was implemented in the year under review that is gradually being rolled out to all sites and is making reporting more efficient.

The annual internal environmental report contains the information that is available on consumption and emissions. Data for 2015 was not available at the time this group management report was compiled, so the key data from the 2014 environmental report is presented below. > TABLE 033

Environmental aspects of KION Group production sites






Volume of waste


1,000 tonnes

Recycling rate



Water consumption


1,000 m3

Energy consumption



Emissions of CO2 related to energy consumption (Scope 1,2,3)


1,000 tonnes CO2 equ.

Emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOC)



All of the environmental KPIs are displaying a positive trend. Due to changes to the basis of consolidation, the absolute figures for each year only have limited comparability with the figures in previous reports.

The KION Group’s objective is to gradually establish a certified system for quality, environmental and occupational health and safety management at all sites. As at 31 December 2015, KION sites had been certified in accordance with the following international standards (or comparable national standards), or were in the process of completing the certification process:

  • ISO 9001 (quality management): 15 production sites, 21 sales & service units
  • ISO 14001 (environmental management): 11 production sites, 16 sales & service units
  • ISO 50001 (energy management): 7 production sites
  • OHSAS 18001 (occupational health and safety): 9 production sites, 12 sales & service units

This represents a significant increase in the number of certified sites compared with the previous year. Already certified in accordance with ISO 50001 and OHSAS 18001, LMH’s Aschaffenburg site is going through the certification process for the updated 2015 version of the ISO 14001 standard, making it one of the first sites worldwide to do so. STILL’s Hamburg site became a member of Hamburg’s environmental partnership in 2015, having undertaken various voluntary measures to reduce its environmental impact.

Sustainability – particularly protection of the environment, conservation of resources and workplace safety – is an important consideration when developing new products and enhancing existing ones. Here are some examples of the successes and improvements achieved in this regard during 2015:

  • In 2015, Linde’s entire product range in China was added to the Chinese directory of green travel and transport technologies.
  • In November 2015, LMH, the BMW Group and the Institute for Materials Handling, Material Flow and Logistics (fml) at Munich University of Technology (TUM) presented the results of a joint project to trial a hydrogen drive system for industrial trucks. The study, which is supported by the German Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure, proves that use of a hydrogen drive system in this area is marketable and financially viable.
  • An efficient yet ergonomic solution for transporting large, awkward loads is provided by LMH’s new forklift truck with an optional elevating cabin. At the press of a button, the driver’s cab glides to a height of up to 5.5 metres in less than ten seconds. From there, the driver can survey the load and carry out the loading process from an ergonomically comfortable position.
  • STILL has launched its initiative for ‘Zero Emission’: Powered by efficient diesel-electric drives, STILL trucks emit such few pollutants that their emissions do not have to be filtered subsequently.

Furthermore, the KION Group acknowledges its corporate social responsibility. This is demonstrated by the fact that executives and employees personally support a variety of environmental and charitable projects in different countries:

  • STILL GmbH has donated an RX 50-10 electric forklift truck to the German Red Cross.
  • Around 340 employees from Fenwick-Linde supported the national donation campaign of the organisation Les Restaurants du Coeur – Les Relais du Coeur.
  • Egemin Automation supported the To Walk Again organisation, which arranges sports activities to help children and adults with disabilities.
  • KION North America supported the Dorchester Children’s Center, a charitable organisation that helps victims of abuse and their families.
  • At its site in Pune, KION India carried out a range of environmental initiatives with the aim of fostering individuals’ sense of responsibility for green issues.
  • The association ‘Stapler Cup hilft e.V.’, which was set up by LMH employees, donated to various charities in Aschaffenburg and supported the German Bone Marrow Donor Centre (DKMS) during the 2015 StaplerCup, a competition for forklift truck drivers.