Production and Safety

GRI 102-15

WACKER attaches particular importance to integrated environmental protection. This commences with product development and plant planning. In accordance with the core ideas of the Responsible Care® initiative (German-language version only), our environmental protection measures often go beyond what is legally required. WACKER continuously works on improving its production processes to conserve resources. One of our main tasks is to close material loops and recycle byproducts from other areas back into production, enabling us to reduce or prevent emissions and waste.

Responsible stewardship is one of the ways we contribute to the United Nations’ sustainable development goals (SDGs). In production, we focus on SDG 12 “Sustainable Consumption,” SDG 13 “Climate Action” and SDG 17 “Partnerships for the Goals,” for example.

Our Group-wide environmental protection standards apply to all our production sites and technical centers. The site managers ensure that our environmental protection measures conform to legal requirements and that we adhere to environmental standards. The Group Coordinator for the Environment checks the implementation of environmental standards in practice at the sites and performs random checks to verify legal compliance.

Our sites regularly inform the public about our environmental-protection activities, including annual community meetings at Nünchritz (Germany), as well as similar events with neighbors or “open houses” at Adrian (Michigan, USA) and Nanjing and Zhangjiagang in China. Our Burghausen and Nünchritz sites publish environmental reports (available in German only) containing environmental-protection facts and figures. We invited representatives of authorities and mayors of neighboring cities and towns, as well as organizations and the media to Environmental Information Day 2016 at the Burghausen site.

WACKER has been a member of the Bavarian Environmental Pact (German-language version only) since it was founded in 1995. Since 2015, this Pact has been operating under the slogan “Jointly strengthening the environment and the economy.” The Pact serves as a catalyst to promote an environmental partnership focusing on climate protection and energy conservation, raw-material efficiency and environmental technology, , and environment-based management. Its primary aims are to strengthen companies’ individual responsibility and avoid environmental pollution.

In 1992, the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development passed the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). This convention addresses the preservation of biological diversity (genes, species and habitats), the sustainable exploitation of such diversity, as well as access rules to, and the sharing of benefits from, genetic resources (access and benefit sharing). So far, the CBD has been signed by 168 countries and the EU (with Germany becoming a signatory in 1993). In May 2011, the EU Commission published a biodiversity strategy to 2020.