Reporting & Data
The 2021 Sustainability report features results for HSES, greenhouse gas emissions, energy, water, and waste. It further demonstrates progress relative to the metrics established in the inaugural Sustainability report from 2019, released in June 2020, and progress against the applicable U.N. Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
This report also includes new social responsibility goals for 2025 and 2030, reflecting our organization’s dedication to Sustainability and our commitment to the environment and the communities which we serve.
Our 2022 Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Materiality Matrix
Our 2022 materiality assessment was performed by Tidal Consulting to identify and prioritize Sustainability aspects for Ecovyst based on relevance to the business and importance to key stakeholders. The box at the upper right location contains the subjects of highest relevance to both Ecovyst and our employees, shareholders, customers, communities and external stakeholders. We have addressed these topics in our 2021 Sustainability report and will use this matrix to examine and improve our ESG policies and procedures.
Our unwavering goal is to make every day a Perfect HSES Day and to achieve Best-in-Class safety performance. In our 2019 Sustainability Report, we had set a goal to achieve top quartile TRIR performance in the chemicals industry by the end of 2020. In 2020, we accomplished our goal—achieving our lowest TRIR in a decade—exceeding the American Chemistry Council’s (ACC) Top Quartile safety performance. As of year-end 2021, Ecovyst’s safety performance has been solid with the Total Recordable Incident Rate running below ACC’s Top Quartile benchmark of 0.14.
At Ecovyst, we additionally track Lost Workday Incident Rates (LWDIR). Since 2016, we have had extremely low LWDIR rates with the highest in 2018 with a total of only 5 incidents across the entire year across approximately 3,200 employees. The overall trend remains positive, and we are pleased to report that in 2020 and 2021 we had zero LWDIR cases.
Additionally, since 2016, there have been no Level 3 environmental releases, our classification of the most significant environmental releases, within Ecovyst. As part of Ecovyst’s dedication to protecting the environment, we track, investigate and take action to prevent the recurrence of all releases, including minor releases controlled by containment systems within our sites. Our goal is to prevent HSES events from occurring by proactively taking action to remove potentials and reduce risk beforehand.
With decades of internal environmental reporting across Ecovyst businesses and with a focus on improving our sustainability processes, we began a corporate-driven effort to capture consistent environmental metrics for energy, waste, and water in 2018. In 2019, we made improvements to our data collection process, including aligning with Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) and Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Standards’ definitions and metrics. We follow the Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Protocol to calculate our Scope 1 and Scope 2 greenhouse gas emissions for all manufacturing, research, and large office facilities.
Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Emissions
In our 2019 Sustainability Report, we shared our total GHG emissions at the company level. In early 2020 after our 2019 data was assured by iCompli, we established the above goals of reducing our absolute greenhouse gas intensity by 15% by 2025 and 25% by 2030 from our 2018 baseline. Our intention is to set significant numerical goals in this area that are practical and realistic, and will also result in significant positive environmental impacts.
As of September 30, 2021, we are trending relatively flat with respect to our absolute greenhouse gas and absolute greenhouse gas intensity for 2021 relative to 2018. We anticipate that by the end of 2021, once our data is assured, we will remain at a similar intensity with our absolute greenhouse gas emissions and absolute greenhouse gas intensity relative to our baseline year of 2018. We are fully committed to identifying and implementing meaningful ways to reduce GHG emissions and GHG intensity at our sites.
In our efforts to reduce our overall impact to the environment and, over time, see a significant reduction in absolute greenhouse gas emissions and absolute greenhouse gas intensity, our company has turned to optimization projects and energy-efficient initiatives to improve our global impacts. Over time, we anticipate that endeavors such as these will allow us to reach our 2025 and 2030 goals.
- Our Baton Rouge Plant improved our overall natural gas consumption by five percent (5%) and CO2 emissions by 4,900 tonnes per year due to a large furnace optimization project.
- Our Hammond Plant reduced electricity consumption by converting to more energy-efficient LED lights.
We are dedicated to driving meaningful sustainability improvement in our global footprint by building line-of-sight from each function to sustainability goals and targets, actively driving and monitoring progress and identifying new and creative GHG and environmental stewardship reduction opportunities.
We have seen significant improvements in our overall hazardous waste output and intensity since our baseline year of 2018. As of Q3 2021, the hazardous waste intensity was at a record low for Ecovyst at 0.0004.
Critical advancements in waste management improvement efforts at one of our facilities helped bring our hazardous waste numbers well below 2018 and 2019.
At the end of February 2021, we acquired a facility in Texas that does not typically generate hazardous waste. However, because the facility is new, we are showing about a 23% increase year-over-year in non-hazardous waste as of third quarter 2021.
As a result of these and other company-wide advancements, we are on track to meet our 2023 year-end goal of reducing process-related Hazardous Waste disposal by 40% relative to our 2018 baseline. These overall improvements reflect our ongoing commitment to Sustainability and pursuit of a greener environment.
Ecovyst continues to closely monitor and improve our water data collection process and site water balance data. We understand the critical importance of preserving our natural resources and doing our part to enhance water quality.
We track and review all our water impacts and releases in our HSE Perfect Days metrics reporting and reviews.
We began tracking our water intensity and withdrawal in our baseline year of 2018. Our 2018-Q3 2021 data shows a relatively flat trend in total water withdrawal and water intensity, and we witnessed an overall reduction in 2020 due to lower production levels during the global pandemic. We anticipate that year-end 2021 trend data for water intensity and water withdrawal will be flat relative to the baseline.
As a result of the pandemic, we saw slightly lower production levels in our Catalyst business in 2020 and 2021. Higher water use, coupled with this reduction in production, has created a modest but anticipated uptick in intensity by year-end 2021.
We also expect that water withdrawal will be relatively flat relative to our baseline by year-end 2021. Our Ecoservices® business’ production uses water as raw material, and as production increases, we will see increases in water withdrawal.
We continue to focus on improvements to our water data and management programs as part of our Sustainability journey. It is our goal to complete water balances at all sites in water-stressed areas by 2025.
Energy management is an important component in reducing our carbon footprint; therefore, our goal in this area is to define and implement Energy Management Plans at all sites by the end of 2025. Our Engineering and Environmental teams throughout the world work to identify new initiatives to reduce energy consumption on an ongoing basis. To learn more about our energy management plans, please see our 2019 Sustainability Report.