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ALTANA’s Understanding of Sustainability
ALTANA consistently gears its activities to sustained profitable growth. But we can only achieve economic success in the long run if we also bear in mind ecological and social aspects and anchor them firmly in our company. Our understanding of sustainability as a triad of economy, ecology, and corporate social responsibility is also reflected in ALTANA’s mission:
We provide innovative solutions based on integrated chemical, formulation, and application expertise that make products of daily life better and more sustainable.
The View of Our Stakeholders
As a globally manufacturing specialty chemicals company, ALTANA maintains regular contact and exchange with various stakeholders. These include its customers, employees, owner, suppliers, other business partners, authorities, associations, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), as well as our neighbors at the different sites. The content and results of these dialogs are among the factors that shape ALTANA’s understanding of sustainability.
In the 2022 fiscal year, ALTANA once again conducted a materiality analysis with a stakeholder survey. The aim of the project was to identify or confirm the sustainability topics that are essential for business operations with the involvement of the relevant stakeholders. In doing so, ALTANA oriented itself both to the current GRI standards (2021) and already to the future European reporting framework ESRS (European Sustainability Reporting Standards), which is currently being developed on the basis of the European Commission’s Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive. The analysis was implemented based on the principle of dual materiality. The focus was on both the impact of ALTANA’s business activities on the environment and society and the impact of sustainability issues on its business activities. To this end, ALTANA, with the support of a service provider specializing in sustainability, conducted around 30 expert interviews with selected stakeholders who are familiar with the company and sustainability issues, including direct customers, brand owners, suppliers, employees, local politicians, and representatives from the fields of education, science, and research. In addition, an online survey was conducted among these and other stakeholders, in which all 34 sustainability topics were assessed.
The results of the stakeholder survey will be available in the first half of 2023 and will be included in ALTANA’s 2023 corporate report. It is planned to conduct a sound opportunity and risk analysis with regard to the environment, climate protection and climate adaptation, employee rights, human rights, social standards, and compliance along the entire value chain. The insights gained from this examination will be incorporated into the company’s corporate strategy.
Objective Evaluation of Sustainability
To be able to measure not only the company’s business performance but also its involvement in all areas of sustainability, alongside key performance indicators and certified management systems, ALTANA is using objective external evaluations increasingly. The assessments of the rating company EcoVadis play a special role. EcoVadis analyzes four topics based on leading standards (GRI, UN Global Compact, and ISO 26000): environment, labor and human rights, ethics, and sustainable procurement. EcoVadis has become the leading assessment platform for the chemical industry. Tens of thousands of companies now work with EcoVadis.
ALTANA uses the objective EcoVadis rating of its production sites and ALTANA AG as a whole to make the respective status quo transparent both internally and externally, but also to systematically drive sustainability forward within the company.
In the year under review, ALTANA participated in the CDP “Climate Change” program for the first time. CDP (formerly Carbon Disclosure Project) is an international nonprofit organization that encourages companies and governments to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, conserve water resources, and protect forests.
Organization of Sustainability
At ALTANA, the Group’s operating companies are responsible for implementing and anchoring sustainability. The individual companies are committed to continually reducing the environmental effects of the Group and to improving safety at the respective sites. Furthermore, the individual sites are required to introduce suitable management systems and have them certified. Moreover, special, cross-divisional expert platforms exchange information on relevant EH&S topics (for example energy, sustainability performance, environmental key performance indicators), and present best-practice models.
Sustainable Development Goals
ALTANA has been a member of the UN Global Compact since 2010 and commits to integrating the ten principles into the company and to observing the general goals of the United Nations (see the Communication on Progress of Global Compact on page 122).
At the summit meeting on September 25, 2015, the 193 member states resolved the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. ALTANA supports this United Nations initiative and developed the goals listed on the following page.