American material science major Dow has announced new commitments to address both climate change and plastic waste.
According to the new sustainability targets, which align to and build upon its 2025 sustainability goals, by 2030, Dow will reduce its net annual carbon emissions by 5 million metric tons, or 15% from its 2020 baseline. Additionally, Dow intends to be carbon neutral by 2050, in alignment with the Paris Agreement.
Also, by 2030, Dow will help ‘stop the waste’ by enabling 1 million metric tons of plastic to be collected, reused or recycled through its direct actions and partnerships. The company said it is investing and collaborating in key technologies and infrastructure to increase global recycling.
By 2035, Dow will help ‘close the loop’ by having 100% of its products sold into packaging applications be reusable or recyclable. Dow said it is committed to redesigning and offering reusable or recyclable solutions for packaging applications.
Dow also confirmed it has entered into new renewable power agreements for its manufacturing facilities in Argentina, Brazil, Texas, and Kentucky, securing 338 more megawatts of power capacity from renewable sources, representing an expected reduction of more than 225,000 metric tons of CO2e. The company said it is on track to exceed its target to source 750 MW of renewable power capacity by 2025.
The company also introduced a new line of mechanically recycled plastic resins for flexible and rigid plastic packaging applications which have the potential to reduce carbon and energy footprints of applications by up to 20-30%.
“Reducing the impact of climate change and eliminating plastic waste are societal challenges that are closely linked. As a producer of technologies that are essential to a low carbon economy, we are developing and investing in new production processes that are low-emission and optimally efficient. And we are now looking at waste as a resource that will enable us to continue to innovate sustainable materials,” said Mary Draves, Dow vice president and chief sustainability officer.
Dow said it will also collaborate with leading academics, NGOs, auditing experts, technology partners and others in industry to incentivize the development and commercialization of low-carbon products and technologies that ultimately lower global GHG emissions and to ensure that companies are able to account for those GHG reductions. Dow intends to share more information about this collaboration later this year.
Meanwhile, the company said it has made significant progress against its 2025 sustainability goals. For example, since 2006, Dow has reduced its GHG emissions by 15%, incorporated a carbon price into its business planning, invested in renewable power capacity.