Reporting of performance is at the heart of Responsible Care®.
Responsible Care® Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are essential metrics used to measure and assess chemical companies’ improved performance in health and safety, environment, use of resources, and transport.
Although the initiative is voluntary and data is somewhat fragmented, open reporting enables companies and associations to promote best practices and therewith help each other drive continuous improvements across the industry.
The latest data set shows the improvements made up until 2015. Results from the last 10 years show improvements in safety and an overall reduction of the industry’s environmental footprint.
Health and Safety at Work
The safety of workers is an utmost priority for the chemical industry and the only acceptable target is zero. It is why safety is the number one concern ahead of all else.
Lost Time Injury Frequency Rate (LTIR)
For companies, safety in general - and safety of workers in particular - comes first. There is no sustainable business without safe operations. To better embed safety practices in company culture, monitoring and reporting of a new, harmonized Process Safety KPI began worldwide in early 2017.
Environment - Air
Emissions of greenhouse gases (GHG) (CO2-eq.)
Carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide and hydrofluorocarbons are the three major gases emitted by chemical plants with Global Warming Potential (GWP), as listed in the Kyoto Protocol. CO2, which is primarily released from the burning of fossil fuels as energy sources, is by far the most important greenhouse gas by quantity.
Sulphur dioxide (SO2)
Sulfur dioxide (SO2) is a major atmospheric pollutant responsible for acidification. Main emitters are combustion plants and refineries.
Nitrogen oxides (NOx)
Nitrogen oxides (NOx) are responsible for atmosphere acidification and have the potential to contribute to photochemical ozone creation that may cause respiratory problems in people living in highly urbanized areas as well as ecological damage to nature.
Emissions of Non-Methane Volatile Organic Compounds
Non-Methane Volatile Organic Compounds (NMVOC) can contribute to photochemical ozone creation that may cause respiratory problems in people living in highly urbanized areas as well as causing ecological damage to nature.
Environment / Water
Nitrogen and phosphorus
Nutrient pollution of water is widespread. It is also costly and can result in challenging environmental and human health problems as well as impacting the economy. It is caused by excess nitrogen and phosphorus in water.
Nitrogen and phosphorus are nutrients that are natural parts of aquatic ecosystems. They support the growth of algae and aquatic plants, which provide food and habitat for fish, shellfish and smaller organisms that live in water. However, when too much nitrogen and phosphorus enter the environment - usually from a wide range of human activities - the water can become polluted. Too much nitrogen and phosphorus in the water causes algae to grow faster than ecosystems can handle.
Significant increases in algae harm water quality, food resources and habitats, and decrease the oxygen that fish and other aquatic life need to survive. Large growths of algae are called algal blooms and can severely reduce or eliminate oxygen in the water, leading to illnesses in fish and the death of large numbers of fish. Some algal blooms are harmful to humans because they produce elevated toxins and bacterial growth that can make people sick if they come into contact with polluted water, consume tainted fish or shellfish, or drink contaminated water.
Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD)
Oxygen is necessary for life under water. Companies measure the Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD) of the water they return to the environment. COD is an indirect indication of the amount of organic compounds in water. The lower the COD, the more beneficial it is for the environment.
Nitrogen : change in the index of nitrogen present in the water returned to the environment (2005 - 2015)
Over the past ten years, companies have reduced the quantity of nitrogen by 40%.
Phosphorus : change in the index of phosphorus present in the water returned to the environment (2005-2015)
Over the past ten years, companies have reduced the quantity of phosphorus in the water by 60%.
Chemical Oxygen Demand: change in the index of the Chemical Oxygen Demand in the water returned to the environment.
Over the past ten years, companies have reduced the COD by more than half. The steep-reductions up to 2010 have now levelled off.