NOT CURRENT YEAR

Grade C-
ChemScore report card 2022

Westlake

Westlake Corporation is an international manufacturer and supplier of petrochemicals, polymers and fabricated building products. The company serves a variety of different sectors such as the agricultural, food, construction, automotive and electronics industries. The Houston-based company is the largest producer of low-density polyethylene (LDPE) in the US and operates in two segments — olefins and vinyls.
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Total score
14 / 48

Grade summary

Westlake Corporation scores one point more than it did in last year’s ranking, ending up with a total of 14 points. The company produces 12 hazardous substances, including one persistent chemical. Westlake Corporation has a product stewardship process in place, which includes a review of environmental, health and safety performance and compliance as well as a hazard assessment. The company markets sustainable products through its own channels but does not advertise safer alternatives on any independent third-party platform such as ChemSec’s Marketplace. Although a division of Westlake is part of an EU project which aims to recycle PVC, we could not identify any clear business targets related to circular economy. Nor did we find any phase-out plans for its harmful chemicals. The company has been involved in various controversies during the last ten years, including workplace accidents, pollution and litigations.

How did we come to this score?

Opportunities for improvement

  1. Phase out persistent chemical
    Since last year’s ranking, Westlake Corporation has started producing or using one persistent chemical. These substances are also known as “forever chemicals” due to the fact that they do not break down in nature. Instead, these chemicals — which are linked to many negative health effects — build up over time. The consequences of these substances are becoming increasingly detrimental, not only for human health and the environment but also for investors. Investors risk stranded assets now that the regulatory speed is accelerating, and are also exposed to significant liability risks since more chemical companies are being sued for contamination. Westlake Corporation should therefore make sure to identify all uses, and publish volumes and percentage of total revenue of its persistent substance. The company should also publish a time-bound phase-out plan and an annual progression report to go with it.
  2. Reduce hazardous portfolio
    Scientists agree that chemical pollution has crossed a planetary boundary and become an urgent global problem. This threatens the stability of global ecosystems upon which humanity depends, by damaging the biological and physical processes that underpin all life. Since Westlake Corporation has 12 hazardous chemicals in its production portfolio — seven more than last year — a paramount improvement point for the company is to reduce this number. Westlake Corporation should therefore make sure to identify all uses, and publish volumes and percentage of total revenue of its hazardous substances. It should also publish a reduction road map of each hazardous chemical and an annual progression report. If the company continues to produce any hazardous substances, it needs to present a rationale for its essential use, motivate the production volume, and state how much money it spends on research and development to find a safer alternative.
  3. Market safer alternatives
    Westlake Corporation either does not have or does not market any safer alternatives in its portfolio. Safer alternatives replace the use of hazardous substances and are important to put an end to chemical pollution. The company should, therefore, start producing safer alternatives or market existing ones on an independent third-party platform. A good place to advertise is ChemSec’s Marketplace, where buyers and suppliers can find and market safer alternatives.

Category breakdown

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Product Portfolio
4 / 18
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Development of Safer Chemicals
5 / 12
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Management & Transparency
2 / 12
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Lack of Controversies
3 / 6
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Overall rank
20 / 54
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Total score
14 / 48
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Product Portfolio
4 / 18
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Development of Safer Chemicals
5 / 12
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Management & Transparency
2 / 12
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Lack of Controversies
3 / 6
Download report
Controversies
Other years
Year Rank Total score
2023 45 / 50 8 / 48
2022 20 / 54 14 / 48
2021 23 / 50 13 / 48