Sustainability

Our purpose underpins how we approach sustainability

We create innovative sustainable polymer solutions for the benefit of customers and society.

Sustainability is an increasing priority for Synthomer, our stakeholders and the whole of society. Our water-based polymers allow markets to replace higher carbon containing solvent-based products that also contain high levels of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). This substitution drives stronger growth in our business and helps our customers comply with stringent sustainability regulations.


Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG)

Synthomer focuses its sustainability programme around six pillars – Strategy and Business, Governance and Compliance, People, Health and Safety, Environment and Sustainable Value Chain.  
Our three strategic priorities for 2021 are carbon and climate change, diversity and inclusion and supply chain assurance. These priorities complement our personal and process safety commitment which remains central to our culture and values.

Vision 2030 is our roadmap for the critical decade ahead and is the result of an extensive review process within our business.
It sets targets for our key ESG issues, including our three ESG priorities for 2021. It also commits us to delivering top quartile performance for personal and process safety, which is central to our culture and values.
Vision 2030, which is designed to align with the UN Sustainable Development Goals, will help guide us through the next critical decade, supported by a series of shorter-term milestone targets.

We are resolutely focused on sustainability and making improvements to our approach to Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) issues, and we measure our progress against internationally recognised standards. While we are proud of the progress we have made so far, we recognise there is more to be done in this important area and are determined to deliver on our targets and objectives.


Highlights and achievements

Strategy

  • Following the successful OMNOVA integration, a common ESG structure has been embedded across the entire Synthomer Group.
  • Sustainability Committee expanded to coordinate global ESG sustainability activities, reporting to the Executive Committee.
  • Decision taken to end the use of coal for energy by closing the Sokolov (Czech Republic) power station.
  • London Stock Exchange’s Green Economy Mark awarded. This Mark is given to companies and funds that derive more than 50% of revenues from environmental solutions.
  • Improved ratings of MSCI from BBB to A and FTSE4Good from 3.2 to 3.6 out of 5.0, while maintaining Silver medal in Ecovadis, and ‘B-‘ level in CDP.
  • Alignment of our reporting to GRI standards for the enlarged Group.

Governance and compliance

  • Launch, communication, and training of the new Synthomer Cores Values.
  • Board composition meets the recommendations of Hampton-Alexander (at least 33% women) and Parker (at least one director from an ethnic minority background) reviews.
  • Externally hosted Ethics helpline which provides a way of raising concerns in confidence is fully available to all the Group employees.
  • Improved Group’s e-learning capabilities, with the learning launch of an improved in-house Learning Management System (LMS), as a platform for hosting e-learning content.
  • Introduction a carbon footprint measure scheme to Performance Share Plan 2020.

People

  • Launch of the Diversity and Inclusion plan, setting out gender and ethnicity targets. Our D&I plan is underpinned by the D&I steering group and sponsored by our Chairwoman.
  • Female representation on Executive Committee and direct reports has increased from 8 to 17%.
  • Launch of Engender a networking and resource group for women.
  • Improvement plan in place based on “Your Voice” employee engagement survey.
  • Our “We Care” communities’ support initiative has strongly been expanded by the Synthomer Foundation programme in USA.

Health and safety (occupational and process safety)

  • Top quartile levels of occupational health and process safety performance at legacy Synthomer sites.
  • SHE Principles and Golden Rules embedded across our enlarged Group.
  • Safety and culture programmes across the enlarged Group.

Environment

  • 8.5% reduction of Scope 1 and 2 emissions to 382 ktes of CO2 equivalent due to conversion to renewable electricity and roadmap to reduce by over 20% by end 2022 (2019 baseline).
  • Total waste generated reduced by 19%.
  • Waste to landfill decreased by 22%.
  • 3.3 million tonnes of CO2 equivalent of Scope 3 emissions (upstream).

Sustainable value chain

  • Extended supplier performance assessment criteria for supplier audits to cover wider aspects of sustainability through our Sustainable Procurement Policy and Strategy.  
  • Increased focus on innovation of products with lower energy intensity, the completion of life cycle assessment of the major product lines, alternative raw material development and full understanding of our sustainable value chain to guide future activity.
  • Our technology and innovation capabilities were expanded through the integration of the legacy OMNOVA R&D resources, resulting in a significantly higher capacity to design new products to meet new market and customer needs.
  • Assessment of all new product introductions against sustainability attributes, as defined by our Project Sustainability Impact Scorecard, and give priority to those with an overall sustainability benefit.

Contact Synthomer today for more information

Should you have any questions about Synthomer’s sustainability initiatives, please contact us.

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