LyondellBasell takes a massive climb in the ranking this year, from number 29 to number 10. Still, the company only reaches the grade C. It has a very large production of hazardous chemicals – data tells us that…
LyondellBasell produces/uses 53 highly hazardous substances –53 SIN List chemicals, 3 PICs, and 3 HHPs – 5 of which are included on the EU’s REACH Candidate List. 1 of these highly hazardous substances are either banned or severely restricted, with set dates when production needs to cease (1 Authorisation List substances, and no POPs). The company produces 1 persistent chemicals. Persistent chemicals are particularly problematic, since they do not break down, but instead accumulate in humans and the environment. Because of this, persistent chemicals should be of extra concern for investors; substances that are not considered a problem today could become huge liabilities in the future.
Please note that there is no available data for the 35 % of the company’s production that takes place outside of the EU and US. Lower EU/US production means higher uncertainty with regard to the total production of hazardous chemicals, which will have a negative impact on the company’s score in this category.
LyondellBasell has a method in place to screen and assess the sustainability of its products and includes intrinsic hazards of ingredients in the screening. It does not, however, exclude substances with toxic properties from its new products. LyondellBasell actively markets safer alternatives on its own website, but not on ChemSec Marketplace. The company has no true circular products, processes or innovations. LyondellBasell uses biobased resources without occupying extra land or competing with food production. It also sources and treats recycled materials in a sustainable way, which is one of the key elements of a circular economy. LyondellBasell is not actively reducing the hazardous waste it generates.
The Dutch company does not produce only sustainable products, and it does not have a timed phase-out strategy for hazardous substances that go beyond regulatory compliance. It shares chemical safety information on its website and is following a credible code of conduct standard. LyondellBasell responded to ChemSec’s attempts to communicate around its ChemScore ranking, but it does not share any information about what kind of chemicals it produces in regions with low regulatory demands for transparency (e.g. Asia). LyondellBasell does have a circular economy program in place, and it has objective and measurable circular economy targets.