Progress in Sustainability: People and Planet
At DSM, sustainability is not only our core value and a key responsibility; it is also a key business driver that is fully engrained in our purpose, strategy, business and operations. Our approach for bringing about positive change is to improve, enable and advocate. The below table provides an overview of our progress in terms of our key sustainability metrics:
We have leading positions in important ESG indices for investors: we hold a platinum sustainability medal from EcoVadis putting us in the top 1% of our industry, we are ranked among the leaders in our industry by Sustainalytics, have an AAA rating from MSCI, have Prime Status with ISS-ESG, and have a leading position in the rankings of Moody’s ESG (formerly Vigeo Eiris).
On Planet, we accelerated our Science Based Target for greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction (scope 1 + 2) from 30% to 50% by 2030 versus baseline 2016. This step-up provides a firm foundation for DSM to achieve net-zero by 2050. Furthermore, we improved the environmental impact of our own operation and remained well on track in terms of our GHG reduction, energy efficiency and purchased renewable electricity targets in 2021.
- The underlying structural improvement in absolute greenhouse gas reduction from operations in 2021 compared to the 2016 baseline is ~23%, versus our target of 50% by 2030
- Energy efficiency has improved by 6% compared to full year 2020 versus our >1% average annual ambition.
- 72% of purchased electricity came from renewable resources compared with 60% in 2020, firmly on course to achieve our interim target of 75% by 2030 in the pursuit of 100%
This progress supports our commitment to a long-term pathway to work toward net-zero GHG emissions across our operations and value chains by 2050. We doubled our internal carbon price from €50 to €100 per ton of CO2eq and signed an additional power purchase agreement whereby all our electricity needs in the US became 100% renewable in 2021. We received a double A rating on our Climate strategy and Water stewardship by CDP, the global non-profit environmental disclosure platform.
We enabled our customers to deliver more sustainable solutions to their (end) consumers Our purpose-led innovation pipeline is fully aligned with our five focus SDGs.
More about our environmental performance can be found in the Planet section.
Our People showed remarkable resilience as we continued to adapt our ways of working to the COVID-19 pandemic circumstances either by supporting remote and hybrid working or by establishing safe working environments in our laboratories and plants. In terms of safety we can be pleased with an improvement in the Frequency Index of DSM Recordable Injuries to 0.22 from 0.24 in 2020, achieving our target level of less than 0.24. We continue to act on our ambition to make our company fully incident- and injury-free. It was also encouraging to see that in such an eventful year, overall employee engagement remained at the high level of 76% and many associated indicators in the Employee Engagement Survey saw an increase. Looking at Inclusion & Diversity, the Executive Committee is now 40% female, the Management Board and Supervisory Board are 50% female, and progress was made on improving the representation of women (23% female executives) and under-represented nationalities at executive level (31%). We developed new ambitious Inclusion and Diversity commitments for the period 2022–2025. More information can be found in the People section.
Brighter Living Solutions
In 2021, 64% of our net sales, including the sales of our discontinued operations, came from products that have a better environmental (ECO+) and/or social (People+) impact than mainstream solutions. We call these our Brighter Living Solutions (BLS). Discontinued operations were included until divestment date, and their exclusion negatively impacts the overall KPI. Positive impact came from the assessment of our newly acquired HMO portfolio, and new significant assessments in our Nutrition business.