NOT CURRENT YEAR
Nutrien is up two points from last year and receives a C grade. Even though the company produces two hazardous substances, Nutrien is one of the highest scorers in the Product Portfolio category. This is mainly because there is reliable information for two-thirds of the company’s product portfolio. Nutrien has a sustainable product line, but doesn’t advertise any safer alternatives on any independently verified third-party platform. The company does not offer or use any circular products or processes, but claims to have started conducting circular economy assessments. Although Nutrien has completed an inventory of its hazardous substances and plans to disclose it according to SASB Chemicals Framework, it has yet to fulfill the transparency criteria set out in ChemScore. The company has been involved in numerous controversies over the last ten years, with several accidents taking place in Nutrien mines and chemical plants.
Opportunities for improvement
- Increase circularity
The chemical industry finds itself at the beginning of the value chain. Therefore, it has a responsibility to act fast and ambitiously against the ever-growing scarcity of our planet’s resources. But Nutrien receives zero points for circularity, since we were unable to identify any circular products, processes or strategies. Nor did we see a decrease in hazardous waste or commenced/increased use of recycled hazard-free feedstock or biobased material. For these reasons, it is important that Nutrien starts by identifying its current production and use of circular products and processes. The company should also develop and present a strategy, which includes an activity plan, with clear indicators for how to expand the area of circular products and processes.
- Market safer alternatives
We did identify safer alternatives in Nutriens product portfolio, but these are not marketed on any independent third-party platform. Therefore, they are hard to find for downstream users looking to substitute hazardous chemicals. A good place to advertise is ChemSec’s Marketplace, where buyers and suppliers can find and market safer alternatives.
- Prevent further controversies
Nutrien has been involved in incidents leading to liabilities of over 10 million USD and should re-design or dramatically improve its Environment, Health and Safety strategy. This would help the company to better avoid incidents and make sure that controls – functioning even when human errors occur – are in place. If an accident or spill should happen, it is important that the company identifies the cause and publishes a document on strategies that will be implemented to avoid similar occurrences in the future. It is possible to prevent human suffering and environmental pollution when producing chemicals, but it requires a thorough Environment, Health and Safety system.