Environmental Performance

AIChE Sustainability Index

Environment performance is based on:

  • Resource Use — intensity of energy, material and water consumption, and use of renewable sources of energy and materials Greenhouse Gas Emissions — intensity of greenhouse gas emissions
  • Other Emissions — air emissions, wastewater, and hazardous waste releases
  • Compliance Management — environmental liability, fines and penalties, and environmental capital investment.

The chemical industry in general has made considerable progress on environmental performance over the past few decades. The recent performance of the 11 companies included in this analysis also indicates continuous improvements — for a variety of emissions, there is a clear downward trend, despite increasing production.

Companies that report energy use and greenhouse gas emissions have also experienced reductions, again in spite of increasing production. Six of the 11 companies have made efforts to increase energy use from clean and renewable sources. In addressing energy efficiency and greenhouse gas emissions, some companies are inherently disadvantaged because of the energy-intensive nature of the processes required to make their products. Nevertheless, these same companies are among the strongest in terms of energy-efficient products and carbon management innovations — receiving external awards and praise despite their inherently carbon-intensive operations.