Daily CSR
Daily CSR

Daily CSR
Daily news about corporate social responsibility, ethics and sustainability

Maximizing Sustainability: Enhancing Water Efficiency Across Production and Use Processes


Maximizing Sustainability: Enhancing Water Efficiency Across Production and Use Processes
We are embarking on a journey to reshape our business model with a strong focus on environmental sustainability. Our aim is to overhaul our processes, products, and raw material usage towards a future that is both resource-efficient and climate-neutral. Key areas of our focus include implementing measures to mitigate climate change, fostering a functional circular economy, and safeguarding nature and biodiversity.
Addressing climate change is paramount in today's global landscape. We are fully committed to meeting the 1.5-degree target outlined in the Paris Climate Agreement, recognizing the significant risks associated with a temperature increase beyond this threshold. While climate change poses considerable challenges, it also presents opportunities for innovation and progress.

Collaboration among stakeholders including policymakers, businesses, communities, and civil society is essential in tackling this issue. Our A- rating from CDP underscores our dedication to contributing to climate solutions. As active members of the Alliance of CEO Climate Leaders, convened by the World Economic Forum, we are committed to accelerating decarbonization efforts and forging partnerships across industries and regions.
Henkel has established science-based emissions reduction targets aligned with a 1.5-degree pathway, particularly for our Scope 1 and 2 emissions. Demonstrating our commitment to climate action, we have integrated the achievement of these targets into the long-term incentive system for our Management Board and top managers. We recognize the dual role of climate change in our sustainability and risk management strategies, considering both our business's impact on greenhouse gas emissions and the potential impacts of climate change on our operations. Our aspiration is to transition towards becoming a climate-neutral company, aligning with the goal of achieving a net-zero balance in our business activities to prevent further global warming.
Transitioning towards a circular economy is integral to sustainable value creation and climate protection. We aim to decouple economic growth from the consumption of finite resources by prioritizing recycling and waste reduction initiatives. By minimizing packaging material usage without compromising quality, performance, or safety, we strive to reduce environmental impacts associated with our products. Additionally, we ensure that our packaging is compatible with existing collection and recycling systems, facilitating proper disposal and resource recovery.
Reducing resource consumption hinges on prolonging the circulation of materials within the economy. Our goal is to integrate materials sourced sustainably and design packaging for reusability, thereby closing the material loop. Collaboration with partners across the value chain, including raw material manufacturers, packaging material producers, waste management firms, and recyclers, is crucial in implementing functional packaging standards.
In our Adhesive Technologies division, we extend this approach by utilizing our cutting-edge packaging adhesives to aid other companies in adopting circular economy practices. We focus on developing innovative solutions that streamline material recycling and separation, enabling products and components to be repaired, reused, and refurbished.
Henkel is actively pursuing closed-loop recycling initiatives within its own production processes. Emphasizing the separate collection of all recyclable waste streams at our facilities is key to this effort.
In 2023, we enhanced our packaging portfolio management by refining our underlying database. This involved detailed recording of packaging specifications in our master data, alongside improvements in data quality. We introduced additional internal analysis and visualization tools as part of a cross-functional and cross-business initiative to enhance sustainability data transparency, leveraging digital solutions to support these efforts.
These tools empower us to conduct comprehensive assessments of our packaging footprint, including quantities purchased or sold, both regionally and globally. This facilitates advanced analyses for reporting and regulatory compliance in our respective markets. While we updated our internal calculation methods, ensuring comparability with previous years’ data, we remain committed to refining data quality and digital tool utilization.
Natural Resources
Rapid consumption growth and resource scarcity, fueled by population expansion and intensified economic activity, exert increasing pressure on biodiversity and ecosystems. Henkel actively advocates for nature conservation and biodiversity protection.
A report by IPBES highlights human-induced threats to nearly one million species, emphasizing the importance of biodiversity preservation. Healthy ecosystems and soil biodiversity are fundamental to sustainable agriculture and raw material utilization. Given the vital role of water ecosystems, we recognize the imperative of responsible water resource management amid challenges posed by climate change, pollution, and overuse.
Our sustainability strategy prioritizes biodiversity conservation and restoration, with a focus on forests, land, and water. We assess our impact, risks, and dependencies related to biodiversity across our value chain, collaborating with denkstatt consultancy for comprehensive analysis and program development. This enables us to contribute to global efforts to halt and reverse biodiversity loss by 2030.
Water management is integral to our value chain, spanning production processes and product formulations. Recognizing water's significance, we strive for responsible water usage throughout our operations.

Therefore, minimizing water consumption throughout the production and utilization phases of our products holds significant importance for us. To pinpoint effective strategies for enhancement, we have engaged in close collaboration with diverse stakeholders. For instance, we are conducting thorough assessments of our water-related impact across the value chain. This entails scrutinizing the water footprint associated with raw materials, our manufacturing processes, water usage during product utilization, and wastewater treatment.