BASF has set itself worldwide goals for the year 2020. The company aims to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 40% per metric ton of sales product and increase energy efficiency by 35% compared with baseline 2002 (excluding Oil & Gas). “These goals are very ambitious, because our chemical plants already work efficiently above average in an European comparison. Altogether we are well on track with climate protection,” said Dr. Ulrich von Deessen, President of BASF’s Competence Center Environment, Health and Safety and Climate Protection Officer .
However, in 2012, the reductions in emissions and increase in energy efficiency were lower than in 2011: In 2011, the company had already emitted 34.6% less greenhouse gases per metric ton of sales product und improved energy efficiency by 25.7% compared to 2002. The changes compared with the previous year are mainly caused by reduced plant capacity utilization worldwide and maintenance works.
In the Oil & Gas business, BASF stopped the continuous flaring of gases associated with crude oil production in routine operations - at all oil production sites. Solely due to this, the company annually prevents the emission of around 2 million metric tons of greenhouse gases.
In 2012, the total emissions of air pollutants from the chemical plants into the atmosphere dropped by 63.1% to 31.580 metric tons (2011: minus 59.9%). By 2020, BASF aims a reduction by 70% compared to baseline 2002.
BASF also reduced the emissions to water in 2012: Compared with 2002, the emissions of organic substances dropped by 76.4% (2011: minus 73.5%) and of nitrogen by 87.3% (2011: minus 87.2%). The wastewater contained 26 metric tons of heavy metals, representing a worldwide reduction of 56.8% (2011: minus 60.8%) compared with 2002.
With the “Health Performance Index” (HPI), BASF measures its performance in health protection. The index comprises data of confirmed occupational diseases, medical emergency planning, first aid, preventive medicine and health promotion. The maximum value is 1.0; BASF aims to reach an annual value of more than 0.9. In 2012, the HPI was 0.89.
With regards to product safety activities, BASF also committed itself to a voluntary goal: By 2020, the company will review the risk assessments for all products that it sells worldwide in quantities of more than 1 metric ton per year. The company already reached 45 % of this goal in the previous year (2011: 30%).
BASF adheres to the ambitious goals to reduce work related accidents by 80% until 2020. In 2012, 1.7 work-related accidents per million working hours occurred at BASF sites (2011: 1.9). Compared with 2002, the lost-time injury rate declined by 48% (2011: minus 42%). The company promotes and monitors safety at work through risk assessments, safety rules, seminars and audits. For example, more than half of all BASF employees in more than 400 sites took part in the global safety initiative of the company, participated in workshops and discussed the subject safety.