SABIC has a large portfolio of toxic chemicals, including two persistent “forever chemicals”, and has decreased its score in the first category from three points last year to two points this year. The production of problematic chemicals is…
SABIC produces/uses 24 highly hazardous substances – 23 SIN List chemicals, 4 PICs, and 2 HHPs – 4 of which are included on the EU’s REACH Candidate List. 2 of these highly hazardous substances are either banned or severely restricted, with set dates when production needs to cease (2 Authorisation List substances, and no POPs). The company produces 2 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 68 percent 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.
SABIC 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 does not, however, exclude substances with toxic properties from its new products. SABIC actively markets safer alternatives on its own website, but not on ChemSec Marketplace. The company has no true circular product, process or innovation. SABIC 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. SABIC is actively reducing the hazardous waste it generates.
The Saudi company does not produce only sustainable products, but it does have a phase-out strategy – albeit not timed – 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. SABIC did not respond to ChemSec’s attempts to communicate around its ChemScore ranking and it does not share any information about what kind of chemicals it produces in regions with low regulatory demands for transparency (e.g Asia). SABIC does have a circular economy program in place, but it is lacking objective and measurable circular economy targets.