Grace's commitment to the highest Environment, Health and Safety (EHS) standards as well as all applicable laws is codified in our global EHS Management System. While every employee is responsible for safe behavior, Grace provides a safe and healthful workplace and ensures that safety and environmental priorities are incorporated in the planning and daily execution of the company's business.
DEDICATION TO THE HIGHEST STANDARDS
We are dedicated to the highest standards of EHS practices. Our global Environment, Health and Safety Policy confirms our commitment to the Responsible Care® initiative and the Responsible Care Global Charter, including, among other things, our commitment to:
- design and operate facilities in a safe, secure, and environmentally sound manner;
- promote pollution prevention, minimization of waste, and conservation of energy and other critical resources at every stage of the life cycle of products;
- make continual progress toward a goal of no accidents, injuries, or harm to human health and the environment from products and operations, and to openly report health, safety, environmental, and security performance.
Adherence to this policy and to the highest EHS standards is overseen by the Grace EHS Steering Committee. The committee is comprised of the Vice President, Integrated Supply Chain (ISC), the Senior Vice President, Government Relations and EHS (both of whom report to the President and Chief Executive Officer), and all EHS and ISC Directors. The committee meets quarterly to track progress on EHS Management System effectiveness, improvement initiatives, and key performance indicators (KPIs). EHS teams provide executive briefings on EHS programs and KPIs to Grace Leadership at monthly and quarterly business review meetings.
Our customers and neighboring communities can be assured that we have established robust environment, health, and safety programs and that we continue to reduce the environmental impact of our facilities and products. At all manufacturing locations, we have institutionalized programs to increase process efficiency, reduce waste, and save energy. Grace has implemented energy management systems, certified to the ISO 50001 standard at our facilities in Worms and Duren, Germany.
The global framework for our EHS activities is our EHS Management System. Adherence to the EHS Management System is audited annually and certified every three years by a third-party registrar to demonstrate regulatory compliance and conformance with the requirements of the American Chemistry Council's Responsible Care® initiative, the gold standard for the industry.
Sixty percent of Grace's 22 manufacturing sites (in the U.S., Germany, Canada, Sweden, Spain, Brazil, South Korea, and Malaysia are currently certified to the technical standards of the Responsible Care® Management System or International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 14001. Certification involves the identification of a plant's environmental impacts and establishment of targets for continuous improvement. Other sites are undergoing the certification process, and our goal is to increase the number of sites with certified management systems in each of the coming years.
Our facilities are also subject to periodic customer and regulatory audits to ensure compliance with regulatory requirements as well as ISO and Good Manufacturing Process (GMP) standards.
Grace monitors material environmental aspects of its global operations. We use reporting frameworks to disclose pertinent environmental information to our stakeholders. Grace participates in the CDP (formerly Carbon Disclosure Project) assessment on Climate Change and Water Security, one of the highest quality ESG reporting frameworks currently available.
Grace has a fully integrated enterprise wide hazard and risk assessment process. The process assesses business continuity risks such as key sites or systems being compromised or failing due to any number of potential initiating events. This process covers all manner of causes, including those arising from severe weather events, product safety, and evolving regulations that might impact market acceptance. Our risk assessment process includes the evaluation of emerging regulations, technological trends including the transition to a lower carbon future and acute physical risks such as extreme weather events and heat stress. All of these are evaluated as potential hazards and ranked in conjunction with all other risks. As part of its Responsible Care Management System, Grace regularly determines the environmental aspects of its activities, products, and services and their associated environmental impacts that are relevant to the organization. This includes but is not limited to its current and planned operations, and any abnormal conditions that may arise as a result of impacts directly related to climate change. Risks are communicated to the Senior Vice President of Government Relations and Environment, Health and Safety (C-suite level position) and relevant impacted stakeholders. All risks are ranked based on the total risk score. The company has begun developing a process for the incorporation of specific climate related risks into its 2020 enterprise wide hazard and risk assessment.
Material risks pertaining to climate are reported on an as needed basis to the Corporate responsibility committee and on a semi-annual basis to the Senior Vice President Government Relations and Environment, Health, and Safety.