Management Approach 2016 (Disclosure 103-1, 103-2, 103-3)
Like other manufacturing companies, Symrise generates direct and indirect greenhouse gas emissions that result in increases in the earth’s average temperature. This has far-reaching consequences for humans and nature: areas that are being desertified, an increase in floods as well as resulting famines and refugee movements. For Symrise, climate change is leading to rising energy and raw material prices as well as climate-related costs, for example, through emissions trading. Reputational damage could also result in the loss of business and a drop in our share price. Climate change simultaneously offers opportunities, for example, through the increased use of efficient technologies that also result in cost savings. Given the urgency of the climate dilemma, SDG 13 requires prompt measures for climate protection.
Corporate Sustainability, supported by the Sustainability Board, is responsible for the topic of emissions reduction. The Sustainability Board meets several times per year to discuss, assess and report on climate-related data and developments. The goals and programs are determined by the Sustainability Board and finally approved by the CEO. The Risk Management department assesses company-specific risks and rewards related to climate change at least once a year and reports the findings to the Executive Board.
The reduction of climate-damaging emissions is part of our environmental strategy and our environmental management. We demonstrate our progress regarding emission reduction in a number of ways, including annual participation in the CDP independent investor initiative.
In the reporting period, Symrise also once again made an impressive showing in the CDP (formerly Carbon Disclosure Project) rating. Despite considerably higher requirements for CDP Rating participants, Symrise ranked once again in the top group this year. The highest award of A was achieved in the category climate for the fourth time. Until August 2017, Symrise was the only company in the industry to have its climate strategy approved by the Science Based Target Initiative.
For the first time, we also achieved the highest rating of A in the water protection category and thus a place in the prestigious A-list. Additionally, Symrise also achieved an excellent result in the forest protection category with an A-. Since 2016, Symrise takes the top position in the CDP rating in the area of climate change, protection of water and forests and thus highlights its pioneering achievements in these fields.
In 2017, we began working with the CDP Supply Chain Program. Our suppliers with the highest risk status were requested to follow the CDP Supply Chain Program. Since the 2017 program was viewed as a pilot, we are now requesting that suppliers renew their participation in 2019 with increased data quality and detailed information, as was done in the previous year. Compared to 2017, the number of responses in the climate change category increased from 44 to 64 – thus also increasing the response rate to 52 %. The number of suppliers reporting that climate-related issues are being monitored at the Executive Board level has almost doubled to 83 % in 2019 compared to 43 % in 2017. In addition, 74 % of our suppliers reported in the reporting year that they were involved in emission reduction initiatives, compared to 57 % in 2018. In terms of our Science Based Target of 80 % in 2020, we are already moving in the right direction. 45 % of our suppliers also reported that they had reduced their emissions (Scope 1+2) in 2019 compared to previous reporting – in 2018 it was 33 %. Nearly half of our suppliers (48 %) also take responsibilities for their suppliers in terms of climate-related issues and thus continue their commitment to the topic along their respective value chains. This share has almost tripled compared to 2017.
Symrise compiles the CO2 emissions of its operating activities according to the internationally recognized Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Protocol Corporate Standard. We report on them according to direct emissions (Scope 1), energy-indirect emissions (Scope 2), and other indirect emissions (Scope 3).
As of 2030, Symrise commits itself to being climate-positive at all its global production sites based on the Scope 1+2 emissions of the GHG Protocol. In this context, we are committed to the eco-efficiency of our greenhouse gas emissions (scope 1+2) by more than 60 % by 2025, based on added value. With this climate goal, Symrise achieves its Science Based target, which was approved in 2017, early on. In doing so, Symrise will thus also be able to sign the "Business Ambition for 1.5°C" and thus serve as a role model in entrepreneurial commitment to a future no warmer than 1.5°C.
We achieve our ambitious climate goal, among other things, by the continued increase of energy efficiency in all production sites, by purchasing environmentally friendly energy sources and supplying surplus energy to local communities: Along with ongoing measures of our local Total Productive Maintenance teams, which continuously replace energy-intensive consumer equipment like motors and ventilation or heating systems with more efficient alternatives, we are reducing our CO2 emissions related to energy generation by about 35 % annually, particularly through our cogeneration plant at the Holzminden site. The share of electricity from renewable energies worldwide was 24.1 % in the reporting year. In addition, we converted all of the electricity we purchase in Germany to green power in 2018 and have set the goal of expanding this measure to our locations worldwide by 2025 – and thus obtaining all purchased energy from renewable energies. In Germany, we also completely compensated for the gas used for the operation of the cogeneration plant by purchasing certified emission reduction certificates and thus support high-grade climate protection projects worldwide. This commitment will continue to be anchored in our future power purchase agreements (PPAs) as of 2023. We also urge our key suppliers to commit to their own greenhouse gas reduction goals by 2020.
Symrise was awarded the first place of the German Sustainability Award in the reporting year for its ambitious program for climate protection, its commitment in shaping the supply chain and its commitment to preserving biodiversity. In the same year, the company also joined the Development and Climate Alliance – a multi-stakeholder partnership consisting of hundreds of companies, associations, government agencies and civil society to promote the voluntary compensation of CO2 under the auspices of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). Since the end of 2019, Symrise has also been a member of the RE100 Initiative and is thus also committed to this external group for the purchase of electricity from renewable sources.