In the first half of 2020, arc Consulting Group conducted a study to better understand the sustainable development of energy and chemical industry and the status of “green initiatives”. Specifically, we want to understand where the company’s efforts focus, what challenges they face, and – ultimately – how they believe that digital and other technologies can advance their sustainable development plans.
The results show that 90 percent of energy and chemical companies around the world have developed sustainable development plans. Generally speaking, energy companies’ sustainable development plans focus on the transition to a low-carbon future, while chemical companies focus on the production of more sustainable products. In other words, these products meet the increasing demand of consumers for a more circular economy, and increase the recycling and reuse of products and materials. Improving operational security also plays a crucial role in both industries, as it is part of getting operational licenses for many companies.
By imposing carbon taxes, setting fuel standards and banning the use of disposable plastics, government regulation and increasing consumer pressure have boosted investment in sustainable products and low-carbon energy. In addition, BlackRock, one of the world’s largest investment companies, recently announced that sustainability will be at the heart of its future investment strategy. BlackRock manages nearly $7trillion in assets (including a huge stake in leading industrial manufacturing and energy companies).
The main findings related to sustainable development measures include:
Lack of funds and resources and aging of assets are the biggest obstacles to achieving sustainable development goals
Customer preference promotes the company’s sustainable development plan and access to capital
Improving operational security is a key factor in most sustainability initiatives
Digitization plays a key role in ensuring the achievement of sustainable development goals.
Research methods of benchmarking management
From March to April 2020, arc Consulting Group conducted a study to analyze and analyse the status of the Sustainability Initiative of the benchmark industrial asset owner. More than 200 industry professionals from North America, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East, Africa and the Asia Pacific participated in the survey. Subsequently, arc held in-depth discussions with the subject matter expert (SMEs) of energy and chemistry. The study found some convincing reasons for the industry organizations to rethink their current sustainable development methods.
Arc analyzes and compares the responses of SMEs, executive or business managers, operation leaders and supply chain managers. 13% of respondents were at C and VP levels, 34 per cent were management. The representative industries include energy, engineering and construction, chemical, metal and mining, pharmaceutical and several other industries.
What does sustainability mean to energy and chemical companies
The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (sdgs) proposed in 2015 represent the agenda for sustainable development. Although very general, the objective outlined is to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all. In its resolution 70/1, the general assembly of the United Nations set 2030 as the target year for achieving the goals of sustainable development:
Sustainability is now the primary and central point for customers and investors across the industry. Some international energy and chemical companies have aligned their enterprise sustainable development goals with the United Nations sustainable development goals. Many companies are developing and implementing well thought out strategies to actively improve and manage sustainability. Leading industrial companies such as ExxonMobil, Dow, Saudi Aramco and shell have publicly announced different sustainable development methods.
For example, ExxonMobil has made clear its commitment to producing energy and chemical products that are essential to modern life, economic development, improvement of living standards, protection of the well-being of people, the environment and communities in their vicinity; And adopt advanced technology to improve the sustainability of existing business.
Dow chemistry is working with partners with similar interests to promote human well-being by helping to guide human beings to a sustainable development of the earth and society. Dow chemistry is one of the world’s leading material science companies, committed to using scientific solutions, and helping to lead the transformation to a more sustainable society through the adoption of circular economy model and joint efforts.