Environmental, social, and governance
Advancing our environmental, social, and governance objectives
Our environmental, social and governance commitments are fundamental to who we are as a team and company. Taking proactive steps to protect our planet, support our communities and people, and advance inclusive and transparent corporate governance efforts are paramount in our work every day. We are excited to take the first big step in our corporate history toward our Environmental, Social, and Governance (“ESG”) commitments by taking action that everyone can track, measure and celebrate with us.
Our approach to ESG in the coming months and years will continue to evolve and be informed by data science, strategic business considerations, industry advancements, regulatory requirements, and materiality assessments we conduct internally and externally with partners and suppliers.
Top-down & bottom-up approach
Raising awareness & building standards
Operational review & transparency
Goals we measure
Hut 8 is committed to raising awareness and building sustainability standards in our industry. Our first set of ESG objectives represent goals we are setting based on operational, shareholder and industry data we have collected in 2021. We aspire to expand our ESG commitments in the coming years while we build on industry and global best practices and regulatory guidance.
Focus on corporate diversity including visible minorities, achieve 25% women and 10% Indigenous employee representation across the organization.
Maintain an executive management team composed of over 40% women
Contribute at least 100 employee volunteer hours for local community organizations
“Like the foundational values of Bitcoin, technology, inclusivity, and innovation are part of Hut 8’s DNA. We are proud to lead positive change in our sector, and hope to build a legacy that will make our team and shareholders proud.”
Chief Executive Officer
Environment: Prioritizing our ecosystem
While there is no easy resolution for climate change, we understand we have a role to play in Canada’s transition to a more sustainable future. We also understand our environmental impacts and emissions sources and are investing in solutions from a bottom-up perspective.
Our commitment toward reducing our footprint includes:
- Targeting achievement of carbon neutrality by 2025 for scope 1 & 2 greenhouse gas (“GHG”) emissions
- Establishing a measurable recycling program to minimize our volume and percentage of waste sent to landfills
- Reducing waste and long-term costs by investing in reusable products such as air filters
- Implementing low-emission LED lighting throughout our facilities in Medicine Hat and Drumheller
- Investing in electric site vehicles
- Continuing to explore ways to increase operational efficiency in a sustainable manner
- Reducing e-waste for Hut 8 and supporting the industry by becoming certified as an authorized MicroBT repair center.
Carbon emission scopes
Scope 1: Direct emissions are emissions from owned or controlled sources (ex. Such as company vehicles)
Scope 2: Indirect emissions are emissions that are a consequence of the activities of the reporting company, but occur at sources owned or controlled by another company (such as electricity)
Hut 8 is pursuing total carbon neutrality by 2025. Carbon neutrality implies net-zero carbon emissions through the minimization of emissions-causing activities and includes the use of offsets for the carbon that is a byproduct of our mining operations. While establishing our targets is the first step in our leadership journey, we have already begun procuring carbon offsets to cover 20% of our 2021 emissions.
We recognize the impacts of our equipment supply chains. Our miners are manufactured in China. which is why we have procured wind-based Certified Emission Reduction Credits from the Yao’an County Meijiashan Wind Farm Project. The Yao’an County Meijiashan Wind Farm Project generates wind energy in the Province of Yunnan, and our use of Emission Reduction Credits is aimed specifically at offsetting a portion of our 2021 emissions.
We recognize the impact of our Canadian operations. Hut 8 has also purchased carbon removal offsets from CarbonCure, a Nova Scotia-based Carbon XPRIZE-winning climate tech company. These carbon removal credits were generated in the 2021 calendar year in Western Canada using CarbonCure’s proprietary technology, which sequesters waste CO2 into ready-mixed concrete.
Small steps today can equate to greater results in the long term. In 2021, we fully transitioned our lighting to 100% LED to maximize our energy savings and to use 75% less energy than incandescent lighting. In total, Hut 8 now has over 500 LED light fixtures in Medicine Hat, Alberta, and less than 300 in Drumheller, Alberta.
We are actively reducing our combustion-based vehicle fleet and transitioning to non-emitting 2021 Polaris Ranger Electric Vehicle Utility Terrain Vehicles (“UTVs”) on our sites. Today we operate 4 UTVs and we anticipate adding three Kovaco Electric Elise 900 skid steers by the end of 2021. By incorporating electric vehicles, Hut 8 will reduce a significant amount of its scope 1 GHG emissions.
As part of the past mining operations of Hut 8, nearly 30,000 air filters were used annually to filter small dust particles from our mining equipment. In 2021, we began to implement reusable air filters as part of our mining operations. These filters can be washed, maintain maximum air flow, and have a useful life of 5 years, generating significantly less waste.
In 2021, our mindset evolved significantly, and our attention focused on reducing the amount of material that we send to landfills. Our recycling efforts now include: breaking down electronics sent to recycling, returning bottles, cans, and batteries to participating retailers, and recycling wood, cardboard and Styrofoam at community service providers. By doing our part, we divert well over 5 tons of CO2 for every ton of recyclables diverted from landfills.
Global thought leadership
We are committed to moving the needle through knowledge sharing. Hut 8’s commitment to positive change includes supporting and encouraging others to join us and take action. We support research projects and leadership efforts that share important industry information, data, and insights. In September 2021, Hut 8 joined forces with Global Blockchain Business Council to publish industry data and share information on the impacts of proof-of-work mining and the environment. The report was released at a special event during the United Nations General Assembly Week in New York. The report can be found here.
Social: Investing in our people and community
We are committed to ensuring the well-being and safety of our employees. Hut 8’s culture is tailored around respect, inclusion, and diversity.
Employee safety, well-being, and diversity
Safety first. We maintain stringent workplace safety commitments and continue to prioritize employee safety through ongoing training, partnerships with accredited safety organizations, and internal mentorship.
Employee success matters. To foster long-term growth, innovation, and engagement at Hut 8, we continue to increase our commitments to supporting employee success and well-being. We support employee satisfaction and growth through training, development planning, our employee recognition program, and though ongoing dialogue and engagement with the executive leadership team. In 2021, we took our employee feedback and launched Hut 8’s first employee share purchase plan so our employees can benefit from our corporate successes.
We offer comprehensive healthcare benefits, access to an employee assistance program, and a flexible leave policy to support employees navigating life events. We will continue to expand our employee programs and well-being initiatives and aspire to be a leader in our industry in this regard.
Diversity and inclusion. As a company and proud member of the global blockchain community we champion diverse leadership, inclusion, and new voices. We are proud to demonstrate our commitment to gender parity in our C-Suite and Boardroom. Hut 8 has and is further committed to maintaining at least 30% women on our Board and 50% women on our leadership team.
Diversity goes beyond gender. Today, our team is comprised of 30% visible minorities across the company, which includes 13% Indigenous representation. Not only do we hope to attract bright and diverse talent, but we are also committed to learning about the barriers that our colleagues and community members face each day. Through training and learning opportunities, active community dialogue, and stakeholder engagement, our team is committed to expanding our understanding and awareness of barriers to diversity and inclusion.
Knowledge for everyone. Whether you can code today or not, we believe everyone should have a chance to learn about Bitcoin, blockchains and the bright future we are committed to building through these innovative technologies. Sharing our knowledge and passion for what we do is a favorite activity of our team members. We will continue to expand our community skills and education efforts through learning partnerships with community organizations and schools, internships, and other education and skills initiatives throughout the coming years.
Creating meaningful community impact. Being an engaged corporate citizen is important to our culture. Hut 8 employees have volunteered at the local food banks. We plan to continue the tradition of corporate donations, staff volunteerism, and partnering with non-profit and charitable organizations driving positive societal and climate change efforts.
Governance: Enhancing transparency and accountability
Good governance is essential to driving our corporate success and building long-term value for our employees and stakeholders. We hold ourselves to high standards and strive to achieve governance excellence every day.
Transparency, disclosures and ethics
We are very proud of our industry leadership in corporate governance. Strong corporate governance practices assure our shareholders that we are operating in their interests. We also believe that we will be more attractive to other investors because our strong corporate governance culture builds additional shareholder value. Compliance with governance best practices and securities exchange and regulatory requirements is table stakes. We continue to enhance our governance practices through director and executive education, regular meetings, and best practice review and adoption where operational alignment can be achieved.
We are transparent with our policies and practices which are available on our website and through SEDAR. These include a corporate code of conduct that defines clear expectations of our employees and Board members, a Diversity Policy, Board position descriptions, mandates and committee charters, Disclosure, Whistleblower, and Insider Trading policies.
Hut 8 is proud to have a diverse board of directors that embodies a range of viewpoints, backgrounds, and expertise. As we continue to build an organization that harnesses diverse thinking and innovation, we are committed to maintaining at least 30% women on our Board.
We believe conversations and thought leadership creates change. Hut 8 is a founding member of the Bitcoin Mining Council, a voluntary group of cryptocurrency miners that promotes energy usage transparency and encourages the use of renewable energy sources. As a member of the Council, we are committed to being open and honest about our energy usage which includes sharing our energy mix and best practices with fellow bitcoin and digital asset miners. We have also joined the Crypto Climate Accord, a collaborative effort inspired by the Paris Climate Agreement. This private sector-led initiative allows us to work with other leaders in the crypto community on decarbonizing the cryptocurrency industry in record time.
Lastly, we also joined the Business Renewables Centre (BRC) Canada in 2022, as its first digital currency member. The BRC is a not-for-profit community that works with industry experts to accelerate the uptake of renewable energy in Canada. Being a part of the BRC not only allows us to work with a wide array of companies and leading-edge renewable energy developers, but also to support and integrate new low-emission sources of power in Canada’s electricity grid.
CAUTIONARY NOTE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS
Statements and information contained on this webpage that may constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of applicable securities laws, include, but are not limited to, statements regarding the Company’s plans, objectives, targets, commitments and strategies to advance its environmental, social, and governance (“ESG”) objectives, the steps the Company plans to make to meet those objectives, the Company’s approach to ESG, plans to expand the Company’s ESG commitments, the Company’s goal of achieving carbon neutrality for scope 1 and 2 emissions, the Company’s goal to maintain zero total recordable workplace safety incidents, the Company’s targets concerning board and employee diversity; the Company’s plans to establish a measurable recycling program and to achieve certain results therefrom, the Company’s plans to add electric vehicles to its fleet and to purchase carbon off-sets and the Company’s target dates for accomplishing any of the foregoing, and other statements that are not historically facts. Readers are cautioned that the foregoing list is not exhaustive.
Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated in such forward-looking statements. The forward-looking statements on this webpage speak only as of the date of this webpage or as of the date specified in such statement.
Inherent in forward-looking statements are risks, uncertainties and other factors beyond the Company’s ability to predict or control, including but not limited to the factors described in greater detail in the “Risk Factors” section of the Company’s Annual Information Form dated March 25, 2021, as filed with securities regulatory authorities in Canada and available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com and as filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and available at www.sec.gov, and elsewhere in documents that the Company files from time to time with securities regulatory authorities in Canada and with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Readers are cautioned that such risk factors, uncertainties and other factors are not exhaustive. Actual results and developments are likely to differ, and may differ materially, from those expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements contained on this webpage.
All forward-looking statements herein are qualified by this cautionary statement. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. The Company undertakes no obligation to update publicly, or otherwise revise, any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information or future events or otherwise, except as may be required by law. If the Company does update one or more forward-looking statements, no inference should be drawn that it will make additional updates with respect to those or other forward-looking statements, unless required by law.
Posted December 1, 2021