NOT CURRENT YEAR

Grade C
ChemScore report card 2020

LG Chem

Headquartered in Seoul, South Korea, LG Chem is the largest Korean chemical company. The company operates within several business areas such as petrochemicals, energy solutions, advanced materials and life sciences. In addition to various petrochemicals, its products include plastic resins, engineering plastics and industrial and electronic materials. LG Chem belongs to the LG Group.
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Total score
17 / 48

Grade summary

LG Chem produces six SIN List substances, two of which are officially recognised as chemicals of high concern by the EU. However, data is available for less than one fifth of the Seoul-based company’s production, as the rest takes place outside the EU/US. The company has a method in place to screen and assess the sustainability of its products and includes intrinsic hazards of ingredients in the screening process. It also has a phase-out strategy for hazardous substances. LG Chem follows several voluntary standards of good conduct, but has, nonetheless, been involved in a couple of environmental violations over the last ten years, including the discharge of toxic chemicals into the environment via waste water.

Opportunities for improvement

  1. Add transparency to the hazardous product portfolio. We can only rank 16% of LG Chem’s overall production since the rest takes place outside the EU and US. For other regions there are no reliable and publicly available sources for identifying producers of hazardous chemicals. Informing ChemSec of hazardous chemical production outside the EU and US could help raise the company’s score.
  2. Reduce the amount of SIN substances. LG Chem is well aware of its production and use of hazardous chemicals through the company’s screening system, CHARM (Chemical Hazard Assessment and Risk Management). The next step is to implement phase-outs and remove hazardous chemicals where they are unnecessary.
  3. Implement a global chemical standard. LG Chem created a database to prevent violation of global regulations, guaranteeing the legality of chemicals in each nation and for each client, according to the company. LG Chem should implement the strongest legislation as a global chemical standard. This would both reduce costs and avoid double standards.

Category breakdown

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Product Portfolio
2 / 18

LG Chem produces six SIN List substances, two of which are included on the REACH Candidate List and one that is also found on the REACH Authorisation List. The company does not produce any persistent chemicals. LG Chem provided ChemSec with the percentage of products containing chemicals of high concern (8,4%) and products where SIN List substances have been used in the manufacturing process (20,4%).

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Development of Safer Chemicals
7 / 12

LG Chem has a method in place to screen and assess the sustainability of its products and includes intrinsic hazards of ingredients in the screening process. The company does not exclude substances with toxic properties from its new products or follow the principles of green chemistry. It does, however, make use of the GreenScreen assessment tool and actively markets safer alternatives.

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Management & Transparency
5 / 12

The company shares chemical safety information on its website but does not have a phase-out strategy for hazardous substances. The Seoul-based company is a member of Korean Responsible Care and follows voluntary standards such as a Code of Conduct and a Supplier Code of Conduct. LG Chem is the only company that provided more details on its hazardous portfolio.

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Lack of Controversies
3 / 6

Between 2013 and 2019 the company was involved in several scandals. In 2019, LG Chem was found to have colluded with four measurement agencies to rig air pollution data on its vinyl chloride emissions over the course of four years. In 2013, LG Chem was among 164 companies investigated by Korean authorities and found to have been discharging toxic chemicals into the environment via waste water.

Download detailed information on controversies (PDF, 147 KB)
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Overall rank
9 / 35
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Total score
17 / 48
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Product Portfolio
2 / 18
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Development of Safer Chemicals
7 / 12
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Management & Transparency
5 / 12
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Lack of Controversies
3 / 6
Download report
Other years
Year Rank Total score
2023 18 / 50 15 / 48
2022 18 / 54 15 / 48
2021 25 / 50 12 / 48
2020 9 / 35 17 / 48