Nature Conservation

GRI 103-1, GRI 103-2, GRI 103-3, GRI 304-1, GRI 304-2, GRI 304-3, GRI 306-5

Our environmental-protection efforts to conserve resources and reinstate habitat help maintain the balance of species. Burghausen’s Site Planning unit develops strategies for limiting land use. We have implemented a site development plan that contains a renaturation concept and ensures that we also use spaces between buildings and old plants. We carefully assess the impact that site expansions may have on nature and and – in consultation with the authorities – implement environmental mitigation programs to offset these impacts.

Covering 232 hectares (about the same size as Munich’s historic downtown district), our Burghausen site borders an EU Habitats Directive site (German-language version only) alongside the Salzach river. To check whether the operation of our facilities has any effect on this nature reserve, we regularly monitor our air pollution levels (especially nitrogen oxide emissions, NOx). In this regard, we had an external consultant compile an environmental-exposure register for the site. The results show that operation of the plants does not impact the preservation and development goals of the reserve near the site.

An appraisal was conducted in advance to assess how remediating the Alz canal (German-language version only) in 2016 would impact the aquatic ecology, as well as nature conservancy and species diversity at the Burghausen site. We used an extensive monitoring program and risk management to ensure that the altered discharge conditions would have no negative impact on the waterway ecology. In collaboration with nature conservation authorities and an assessor, we constructed protective fences for reptiles as protection and new stone and sand areas as permanent retreat options for sand lizards. Ecological monitoring of the stated protective measures for waterway ecology and for animals and plants accompanied the entire construction and clean-up phase.

Naturnahe Alz e.V.

Eight ChemDelta Bavaria companies came together to establish the Naturnahe Alz (Natural Alz) association (German-language version only) in 2015. Based in Burgkirchen, the environmental initiative’s aim is to support Bavaria in the environmental restoration of the Alz River and enhancing its ecosystem in the long term. Wacker Chemie AG is one of the founding members. In close collaboration with Traunstein’s water management agency, the association supports the ecological restoration of the Alz from the town of Trostberg to where it flows into the Inn river. In April 2016, the association donated €100,000.

Wildlife Conservation: Projects in the USA

A group of employees at our US site in Adrian (Michigan) has set up nesting boxes for various species of bird and maintains a 2.0-km nature trail. The 97-hectare site also features native wildflower and butterfly gardens. An outdoor area of almost 81 hectares has been certified for the conservation of wildlife. The employees are dedicated to nature and wildlife conservation. For its dedication, the Adrian team was once again awarded the US Wildlife Habitat Council’s (WHC) Wildlife at WorkSM certificate in the period under review, and was also nominated for the WHC Conservation Award 2017.

At our new US site in Charleston, Tennessee, we have renaturalized South Mouse Creek and planted around 800 trees along 490 meters of riverbank. The project involved preserving the natural habitat of the riverside and naturally filtering the water of South Mouse Creek, which is situated at the end of the Cleveland watershed.

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.