Making sustainable development a key priority | Shanghai Daily
For specialty chemicals company LANXESS, sustainable development has become a way of life as the firm puts priority on safety, health and environmental protection at workplaces.
Listed on the Dow Jones sustainability World index for six consecutive years, German-headquartered LANXESS is proud to be one of the market leaders in implementing safe and sustainable production processes as well as advanced environmental protection measures.
In China, LANXESS has been hosting the “health, safety and environmental protection” symposium since 2014 jointly with the China Petroleum and Chemical Industry Federation to raise industry awareness of sustainable development.
Ming Cheng Chien, chief executive officer of LANXESS China, said sustainability is key to supporting the transformation and upgrading of China’s chemical industry.
“We are very much honored to be part of the efforts of building an exchange platform for the industry. We hope to share the successful experiences on safe, sustainable and effective solutions and production processes, while jointly provide our suggestions for creating a path of sustainable transformation,” Chien said during this year’s symposium.
China’s petroleum and chemical industry has made remarkable achievements in the past three decades to make the country rank at the top in terms of the scale of its chemical industry.
“However, the industrial development pattern remains extensive, and there is a big gap in quality development,” said Li Shuosheng, chairman of the China Petroleum and Chemical Industry Federation.
“Overall, the industry is large in scale but not strong enough, and we are faced with severe challenges in energy consumption, pollution emissions and production safety.”
Li called for more technological facilitation to help the industry create a new path of “green development” driven by innovation.
To offer high quality products, technologies and services is the way of LANXESS to achieve sustainable development. It adopts high standards in its 17 subsidiaries in China — including three joint ventures, nine production sites and nine research and development centers.
For more than 1,900 employees at LANXESS China, sustainable development is serving as insurance for faster growth and better working experiences.
For example, its leather chemicals plant in Changzhou of Jiangsu Province uses sophisticated technologies, environmental friendly processes, and provides innovative solutions.
The full-range, high quality leather chemicals optimize the performance of leather materials, such as softness and water resistance, and can also cover minor defects and remove dirt.
Also, the research and development building in LANXESS’ Changzhou factory has won a national green construction silver prize as it is equipped with solar and geothermal installations, low-emissivity glass and rainwater recycling devices to reduce energy consumption and represent the factory’s commitment to high environmental protection standards.
Next to the leather chemicals plant is the largest investment by LANXESS China so far — the ethylene-propylene-diene-monomer (EPDM) plant of Arlanxeo, a joint venture between LANXESS and Saudi Aramco.
With a total 235 million euros (US$276 million) investment, the plant presents sustainable production by adopting Keltan ACE technology — an innovation that reduces energy consumption in production and improves catalyst efficiency compared with traditional ways, which do not need a catalyst for extraction.
To mark its contribution, LANXESS has been ranked one of just 193 companies around the world in the Carbon Disclosure Project “Climate A” List.
From 2010 to 2015, specific greenhouse gas emissions of LANXESS have fallen 17 percent. The firm set a new climate protection goal in the early 2016, aiming to further cut its greenhouse emissions by 25 percent by in the next decade from the 2015 levels.
LANXESS advocates “four principles” about a healthy and safe environment: Prevention, Personal Commitment, Proactive initiative and Performance.
One company’s efforts can be more valuable if it is willing to share its experience with others. During the latest symposium themed “Exploring the Chemicals Industry’s Ecological Transformation Along the Yangtze River,” held in Changzhou on April 28, which marked the World Day for Safety and Health at Work, LANXESS organized training, communications and commitment activities relating to health, safety and environmental protection as one of the hosts.
Participants included stakeholders such as the Commission of Economy and Information, the Administration of Work Safety and the Environmental Protection Bureau of Changzhou Municipal Government, representatives from industrial parks along the Yangtze River in Jiangsu Province — such as the Nanjing Chemical Industrial Park, Zhenjiang New Material Industrial Park, Yangzhou Chemical Industrial Park and Changshu New Material Industrial Park — and leaders from major chemical manufacturing enterprises in Changzhou Binjiang Economic Development Zone.
Hu Dongqi, technological innovation director of LANXESS China, shared the experiences of its Changzhou plant on health, safety and environmental protection. The Changzhou Binjiang Economic Development Zone Responsible Care Branch was also launched at the LANXESS Changzhou production site to promote responsible care within the park.