12.3 million tons

of COeq.
Total greenhouse gas emissions –
Scopes 1 and 2 (Kyoto Protocol)

Definition

The greenhouse gas emissions reported by Solvay correspond to the scope of the Kyoto Protocol and comprise the following compounds or compound families: CO2, N2O, CH4, SF6, HFCs, PFCs and NF3. To calculate their impact on climate change, greenhouse gas emissions are converted from metric tons to the CO2 equivalent using the Global Warming Potential of each gas based on a 100-year timeframe, as published by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in its fifth assessment report.

The indicator takes into account:

  • Direct emissions for each greenhouse gas released from Solvay’s industrial activities (Scope 1 of Kyoto Protocol). For CO2, the reporting of direct emissions includes emissions from the combustion of all fossil fuels as well as process emissions (e.g. thermal decomposition of carbonated products and chemical reduction of metal ores);
  • Indirect CO2 emissions related to the steam and electricity purchased from third parties and consumed internally (Scope 2 of Kyoto Protocol) For electricity purchased, indirect emissions are calculated by applying market-based methods. In 2017, electricity supply contracts were analyzed in order to determine the most appropriate CO2 emissions factor of each site.

Management approach

The Group updated its greenhouse gas emissions approach in September 2018. Solvay is committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 1 million tons no later than in 2025, by improving its energy efficiency and energy mix and by investing in clean technologies. In setting a concrete objective, it is among the first chemical groups to decouple its emissions from its growth.

Since January 1, 2016, Solvay has applied to greenhouse gas emissions an internal carbon price of € 25 per metric ton CO2 equivalent, to take into account climate challenges in its investment decisions.

An externally verified and structured greenhouse gas emission reporting system and responses to rating agencies such as the Carbon Disclosure Project help the Group align its efforts with the magnitude of its greenhouse gas challenges.

Indicators and objectives

Greenhouse gas emissions, new target

Solvay’s priority objective

2025

-1 million tons

of greenhouse gas emissions (Scope 1 and 2) in comparison with 2017

Greenhouse gas emissions – 2018 achievement

Mt CO2 eq.

 

 

Total greenhouse gases emissions (scopes 1 and 2) in 2018

 

12.3

Total greenhouse gases emissions (scopes 1 and 2) in 2017

 

12.3

Variation due to changes in reporting scope (structural changes)

 

-0.0

Variation due to changes in calculation methodology or improvements in data accuracy

 

-0.0

Emissions increase or reduction

 

-0.0

Greenhouse gas emissions intensity

kg CO2eq. / € EBITDA

 

2018

 

2017

 

2016

 

2015

Scope: consistent with financial reporting.

Greenhouse gas intensity

 

5.51

 

5.53

 

5.86

 

7.26

For a given year, greenhouse gas emissions intensity reflects the amount of scope 1 and 2 emissions covered by the Kyoto Protocol included in the financial scope expressed in kg CO2 eq. per euro of EBITDA.

In 2018, greenhouse gas intensity decreased by 0.02 kg CO2 eq. per euro of EBITDA.

Greenhouse gas emissions

Greenhouse gas emissions (Scope 1 and 2)

 

 

 

 

2018

 

2017

 

2016

 

2015

Scope: consistent with financial reporting scope, including the manufacturing activities of the companies that are currently consolidated (fully or proportionately). The greenhouse gas emission of the companies in the financial scope represents 81% of the total greenhouse gas emissions of all companies in the operational scope.

Direct and indirect CO2 emissions (scopes 1 and 2)

 

Mt CO2

 

9.8

 

10.0

 

10.9

 

11.6

Other greenhouse gases emissions according to Kyoto Protocole (scope 1)

 

Mt CO2eq

 

2.4

 

2.3

 

2.4

 

2.6

Total greenhouse gases emissions according to Kyoto Protocole

 

Mt CO2eq

 

12.3

 

12.3

 

13.4

 

14.2

Other greenhouse gases CO2 emissions not according to Kyoto Protocole (scope 1)

 

Mt CO2eq

 

0.1

 

0.1

 

0.1

 

0.1

Direct greenhouse gas emissions (Scope 1)

Mt CO2 eq.

 

2018

 

2017

 

2016

 

2015

Scope: consistent with financial reporting.

Methane – CH4

 

0.88

 

0.90

 

0.81

 

0.85

Nitrous oxide – N2O

 

0.10

 

0.14

 

0.20

 

0.27

Sulfur hexafluoride – SF6

 

0.04

 

0.06

 

0.05

 

0.04

Hydro fluoro carbons – HFCs

 

0.06

 

0.14

 

0.05

 

0.05

Perfluorocarbons – PFCs

 

1.36

 

1.07

 

1.34

 

1.40

Nitrogen trifluoride – NF3

 

0.0

 

0.0

 

0.0

 

0.0

Total other Greenhouse gas emissions according to Kyoto Protocol

 

2.44

 

2.31

 

2.45

 

2.61

Carbon dioxide – CO2

 

7.96

 

7.92

 

8.43

 

8.76

Total direct emissions

 

10.35

 

10.2

 

10.9

 

11.4

In 2018, direct CO2 emissions were marginally higher than in 2017.

In 2018 direct other greenhouse gas emissions according to the Kyoto Protocol were 0.13 million tons CO2 eq. higher than in 2017. This change is attributable mainly to an increase of 0,29 million tons CO2 eq. of CF4 emissions in Spinetta (Italia) and a decrease of 0.08 million tons CO2 eq. of HFCs. 

Total indirect CO2 – Gross market-based (Scope 2)

Mt CO2

 

2018

 

2017

 

2016

 

2015

Scope: consistent with financial reporting.

Electricity purchased for consumption

 

1.0

 

1.2

 

1.4

 

1.7

Steam purchased for consumption

 

0.9

 

0.9

 

1.1

 

1.1

Total

 

1.9

 

2.1

 

2.5

 

2.8

Since the implementation of the market-based method, a detailed review of emissions factors for purchased electricity covering all sites is done every year.

The decrease of 0.2 million tons of CO2 for indirect CO2 emissions linked to purchased electricity is explained by the start-up of the Solvay Jasper County Solar Farm in South Carolina (United States, 0.05 million tons of CO2), improved electricity purchases with lower carbon content (0.10 million tons of CO2), and the shutdown of the electrolysis unit in Torrelavega (Spain, 0.04 million tons of CO2).

Indirect CO2 emissions linked to purchased steam is stable, there were no significant changes in the steam sourcing.

Total indirect CO2 – Gross location-based (Scope 2)

Mt CO2

 

2018

 

2017

 

2016

 

2015

Scope: consistent with financial reporting.

Electricity purchased for consumption

 

1.1

 

1.2

 

1.2

 

1.8

Steam purchased for consumption

 

0.9

 

0.9

 

1.1

 

1.1

Total

 

2.0

 

2.1

 

2.3

 

3.0

Other indirect greenhouse gas emissions (Scope 3)

Mt CO2 eq.

 

2018

 

2017

 

2016

 

2015

Scope: consistent with financial reporting.

Fuel- and energy-related activities

 

0.7

 

0.7

 

0.8

 

0.8

Investments

 

1.9

 

1.7

 

0.8

 

2.5

Purchased goods and services

 

5.8

 

6.6

 

7.2

 

7.6

Business travel

 

0.02

 

0.02

 

0.02

 

0.02

Downstream transportation and distribution

 

0.8

 

0.8

 

1.2

 

1.0

Due to no significant change in energy sourcing, emissions related to “Fuel and energy-related activities” remain stable. “Investments” encompasses the scope 1 and 2 emissions of the discontinued activities: 1.6 million tons of CO2 eq. for polyamide activities.

Downstream scope 3 emissions related to processing use and end-of-life of products have been identified as significant through the Sustainable Portfolio Management assessment. Values are not disclosed yet, as some calculation assumptions are undergoing verifications.

2018 key achievements

  • Solvay has continued to step up its involvement in renewable energy production on sourcing in 2018.  The Solvay Jasper County Solar Farm has been commissioned in the United States of America. Wind power has been contracted in India. Works are ongoing to expand use of biomass energy on top up the assets in Brotas (Brazil), Dombasle (France), Rheinberg (Germany), with new additions in India and China. Finally, Solvay has decided to invest in a new biomass boiler in Germany, which will lower emissions by 0.2 million tons of CO2 per year and play a significant role in meeting the Group’s commitment to reduce CO2 emissions by 1 million tons no later than in 2025, regardless of its growth;
  • The SOLWATT© energy and carbon efficiency program has delivered 0.54 million tons of emission reductions since 2014, with 1,000 actions deployed across 70 sites worldwide. New savings achieved in 2018 are estimated at 63.7 million tons of CO2;
  • In the trona mine at Green River (Wyoming, United States), partial recovery of the methane emitted during the extraction and combustion of trona has avoided emissions equivalent to 0.1 million tons of CO2 eq. per year since 2011. Since 2012 some of the heat from combustion of the recovered methane has been used in the manufacturing process, bringing additional energy and CO2 savings.