Safeguarding our people and the planet

Leading by example

Our operations

At DSM we take our responsibilities seriously - whether it’s looking after our 23,000 people, or the planet we all share.

Our people

Safeguarding, nurturing and developing our increasingly diverse 23,000-strong workforce is a top priority for DSM. In fact, today our employees represent around 100 nationalities (a huge transformation from 2001 when nearly half our people were Dutch).

Health & Safety

At DSM we aim to continue reducing the Frequency Index of Recordable Injuries - which is based on the number of fatalities, lost or restricted workday cases or medical treatment cases per 100 DSM employees and contractors in one year. The goal is to reduce frequency by 50% or more by 2020 compared to 2010 (an index score that is less than or equal to 0.25 in 2020, compared to the 0.57 achieved in 2010). In 2020, the Frequency Index of all DSM Recordable Injuries improved from 0.28 to 0.24, with the majority of our sites being injury-free and achieving our target level.

Helping with this are our Life Saving Rules; our Safety, Health & Environmental (SHE) policy; various ongoing process improvements and competency training; and the day-to-day fostering greater safety awareness.

We also invest heavily in the health of people - through our regional health initiatives such as DSM FIT in the Netherlands and the Brighter Living Wellness Program in the USA, we encourage and support employees worldwide who would like to improve their health and well-being in the short term. We also take a long-term perspective in encouraging long-term health and employability.

Inclusion & Diversity

For a science company like DSM, diversity of backgrounds, experiences, cultures and opinions is essential if we want to achieve our united purpose of creating brighter lives for all. There are many aspects of inclusion & diversity that matter to DSM, including age, nationality, culture, ethnic background, gender and religion (to name but a few).

Our Environmental Footprint

Responsibility for our operations covers some 200 DSM sites and offices in nearly 50 countries (and even extends to our suppliers, customers and end-users - for example through our Brighter Living Solutions).

DSM is committed to being transparent about its sustainability performance. The company has set ambitious sustainability aspirations company-wide. Our key environmental targets are our Science Based Targets, comprising a greenhouse gas (GHG) scope 1 + 2 emission absolute reduction of 30% and a GHG scope 3 intensity reduction of 28% by 2030 versus our 2016 baseline. These were reviewed and approved by the Science Based Targets initiative in early 2019 and are the foundation for achieving our net zero by 2050 commitment.

We will achieve this target through a wide-ranging number of actions across all our operations, including:

  • renewable electricity: 50% of purchased electricity to be sourced from renewables by 2025, increasing to 75% by 2030
  • energy efficiency improvement: an average year-on-year improvement of at least 1% until 2030
  • Supply chain engagement: engaging with our suppliers on emissions reduction through our CO2REDUCE program

DSM’s progress towards other environmental footprint reductions targets is published in the company’s Annual Report.

Key environmental indicators 2020

The table below shows DSM’s footprint for key environmental indicators in 2020.

Divestments are reported until the moment of divestment. Acquisitions in the first half of a given year are included in the reporting scope of the year after acquisition. Acquisitions in the second half of a given year are included in the reporting scope of the year following the first full year after acquisition.

(x million tons) 2020 2019 2018 2017 2016
Total CO2e emissions (Scope 1 and 2) - Market based 1.24 1.17 1.23 1.50 1.50*
Total Scope 1 CO2e emission 0.62 0.63 0.76 1.03 1.03
Direct fuels Scope-1 CO2e emissions 0.58 0.59 0.73 0.99 0.98
Non-fuel Scope 1 CO2e emissions 0.04 0.04 0.03 0.04 0.06
Total Scope 2 CO2e emissions 0.62 0.54 0.47 0.47 0.47

*) The 2016 baseline for the purposes of our SBT was restated to 1.65 million tons. See the Annual Report 2020 for details.

(in TJ) 2020 2019 2018 2017 2016
Total (net) primary energy consumed 21,500 21,200 20,800 23,400 23,000
Total electricity purchased 4,520 4,560 3,910 3,870 3,540
Purchased non-renewable electricity 1,830 2,280 2,300 3,040 3,250
Purchased renewable electricity 2,690 2,270 1,610 825 285
Total electricity self-generated 1,540 1,290 1,600 1,910 2,330
Non-renewable electricity self-generated 1,520 1,280 1,590 1,900 2,300
Renewable electricity self-generated 15 8 15 12 15
Non-renewable electricity, exported 713 535 546 673 946
Renewable electricity, exported 1 1 0 1 0
Non-renewable fuel consumption 9,830 9,860 11,900 14,800 14,800
Coal consumed 110 365 1,080 3,780 3,200
Diesel/gas oil consumed 225 182 255 190 140
Natural gas consumed 8,610 8,460 9,770 9,980 10,650
Other non-renewable fuel consumed 894 856 798 805 836
Renewable fuel consumption 271 255 285 294 255
Biogas consumed 147 131 128 118 140
Biomass liquid consumed 0 - - - -
Biomass solid consumed 11 - - - -
Other renewable fuel consumed 111 123 157 176 115
Total heat purchased 4,850 4,000 2,570 1,630 1,560
Non-renewable heat, purchased 4,250 3,460 2,540 1,630 1,560
Renewable heat, purchased 593 543 28 0 0
Total heat self-generated 6,040 6,340 7,480 8,970 8,220
Non-renewable heat self-generated 5,790 6,110 7,280 8,740 8,020
Renewable heat self-generated 246 222 208 225 198
Total heat exported 385 385 715 769 777
Non-renewable heat exported 371 353 662 722 777
Renewable heat exported 13 32 52 46 -
(in tons) 2020 2019 2018 2017 2016
Recycled waste (%) 85% 86%* 83% 85% 83%
Total process related non-hazardous waste 130,200 107,400* 96,700** 123,000 137,000
Landfill 17,400 15,200 17,900 15,800 16,900
Off-site incineration with heat recovery 10,700 9,200 7,660 6,390 5,200
Off-site incineration without heat recovery 4,300 3,400 3,190 5,210 6,100
Off-site recovery*** 97,800 79,700* 67,900** 96,000 108,600
Total process related hazardous waste 75,200 84,900 81,800 66,500 56,000
Landfill 1,150 1,560 2,830 2,600 1,030
Off-site incineration with heat recovery 28,800 27,600 24,700 19,600 13,700
Off-site incineration without heat recovery 7,300 6,300 8,980 3,910 7,900
Off-site recovery 37,900 49,500 45,300 40,400 33,300
Non-process related waste 9,800 5,100 26,900 8,420 9,600
Landfill 730 1,750 5,940 1,890 1,000
Off-site incineration 300 70 200 980 170
Off-site recovery*** 8,800 3,300 20,700 5,540 8,500

*) Restated due to a correction at one location. See the Integrated Annual Report 2020 for details.
**) Restated due to a correction at two locations. See the Integrated Annual Report 2019 for details.
***) (Land)Farming has been combined into Off-Site recovery.

(x million m3) 2020 2019 2018 2017 2016
Total water withdrawal 108 111 114 114 104
Water withdrawal for non-once-through cooling 23.6 22.6 22.1 23.4 21.9
Ground water 5.2 6.0 7.3 7.4 6.7
Potable (tap) water 13.6 12.1 9.9 11.1 10.5
Surface water 4.8 4.6 4.9 5.0 4.7
Emissions to water          
COD (tons) 2,000 2,100 2,240 2,680 2,600
Nitrogen (tons) 480 430 460 460 630
Phosphorous (tons) 60 60 60 80 70
(in tons) 2020 2019 2018 2017 2016
VOC 3,520 2,740 4,880 6,680 7,840
SO2 30 60 90 270 320
NOX 340 430 510 750 800
Number of non-monetary sanctions 18 2 6 4 2
Total monetary value of fines (€) 26,000 115,100 23,500 128,000 27,900

Historic location reports by region

  APAC Europe North America Latin America
Energy and GHG        
Total Primary Energy (PJ) 7.1 9.3 4.4 0.8
% Renewable Electricity purchased 1.0% 100.0% 61.0% 69.0%
Total scope 1 + 2 CO2e emissions (x million tons) - Location based 0.55 0.58 0.27 0.27
Total scope 1 + 2 CO2e emissions (x million tons) - Market based 0.55 0.49 0.18 0.21
Water        
Total Water use (x million m3) 5.9 97.6 4.04 0.65
Total Water consumption (x million m3) 5.9 12.9 4.04 0.65
COD (net) (x 1,000 tons) 0.1 1.5 0.3 0.0
Waste        
Total Process Related Waste (x 1,000 tons) 64 97 25 19
Total Recycled Waste (x 1,000 tons) 59 85 16 15
Total Non-Recycled Waste (x 1,000 tons) 5 12 9 4
- Landfill Non-hazardous (x 1,000 tons) 1 6 7 3
- Landfill Hazardous (x 1,000 tons) 0 1 0 0
- Off-site Incineration without Heat recovery (x 1,000 tons) 4 5 2 1
% Recycling 92% 88% 62% 80%
Emissions to Air and Various        
VOC (x 1,000 tons) 1.6 1 0.3 0.7
NOX (x 1,000 tons) 0.03 0.2 0.1 0
SO2 (x 1,000 tons) 0.02 0 0 0
Number of non-monetary sanctions 0 0 18 0
Total monetary value of fines (€ x 1,000) 26 0 0 0
  APAC Europe North America Latin America
Energy and GHG        
Total Primary Energy (PJ) 5.9 10.1 4.4 0.8
% Renewable Electricity purchased 0.3 61.3 69.3 64.7
Total scope 1 + 2 CO2e emissions (x million tons) - Location based 0.46 0.59 0.30 0.04
Total scope 1 + 2 CO2e emissions (x million tons) - Market based 0.46 0.50 0.19 0.03
Water        
Total Water use (x million m3) 4.28 101.10 4.73 0.77
Total Water consumption (x million m3) 4.28 12.80 4.73 0.77
COD (net) (x 1,000 tons) 0.1 1.7 0.3 0.0
Waste        
Total Process Related Waste (x 1,000 tons) 41 100 29 52
Total Recycled Waste (x 1,000 tons) 38 93 19 47
Total Non-Recycled Waste (x 1,000 tons) 3 7 11 5
- Landfill Non-hazardous (x 1,000 tons) 1 2 9 3
- Landfill Hazardous (x 1,000 tons) 0 1 0 1
- Off-site Incineration without Heat recovery (x 1,000 tons) 2 4 2 1
% Recycling 91% 93% 63% 91%
Emissions to Air and Various        
VOC (x 1,000 tons) 0.8 1.0 0.3 0.6
NOX (x 1,000 tons) 0.0 0.2 0.1 0
SO2 (x 1,000 tons) 0.05 0 0 0
Number of non-monetary sanctions 0 2 0 0
Total monetary value of fines (€ x 1,000) 88 12 15 0
  APAC Europe North America Latin America
Energy and GHG        
Total Primary Energy (PJ) 5.1 10.6 4.8 0.4
% Renewable Electricity purchased 0.2 60.5 37.1 66.0
Total scope 1 + 2 CO2e emissions (x million tons) - Location based 0.42 0.66 0.29 0.02
Total scope 1 + 2 CO2e emissions (x million tons) - Market based 0.46 0.57 0.23 0.01
Water        
Total Water use (x million m3) 3.98 104.69 4.78 0.36
Total Water consumption (x million m3) 3.98 12.97 4.78 0.36
COD (net) (x 1,000 tons) 0.2 1.7 0.3 0.0
Waste        
Total Process Related Waste (x 1,000 tons) 42 96 29 10
Total Recycled Waste (x 1,000 tons) 39 88 13 6
Total Non-Recycled Waste (x 1,000 tons) 4 8 16 4
- Landfill Non-hazardous (x 1,000 tons) 2 3 10 3
- Landfill Hazardous (x 1,000 tons) 0 0 0 1
- Off-site Incineration without Heat recovery (x 1,000 tons) 1 5 7 0
% Recycling 91% 91% 46% 57%
Emissions to Air and Various        
VOC (x 1,000 tons) 3.0 0.9 0.3 0.8
NOX (x 1,000 tons) 0.1 0.3 0.1 0
SO2 (x 1,000 tons) 0.08 0 0 0
Number of non-monetary sanctions 0 2 4 0
Total monetary value of fines (€ x 1,000) 17 5 2 0
  APAC Europe North America Latin America
Energy and GHG        
Total Primary Energy (PJ) 6.4 11.7 5 0.5
% Renewable Electricity purchased 1% 25% 24% 56%
Total scope 1 + 2 CO2e emissions (x million tons) - Location based 0.58 0.68 0.29 0.02
Total scope 1 + 2 CO2e emissions (x million tons) - Market based 0.58 0.66 0.25 0.02
Water        
Total Water use (x million m3) 5.5 103.2 5 0.4
Total Water consumption (x million m3) 5.5 12.6 5 0.4
COD (net) (x 1,000 tons) 0.3 1.7 0.4 0.1
Waste        
Total Process Related Waste (x 1,000 tons) 52 104 36 10
Total Recycled Waste (x 1,000 tons) 48 94 24 4
Total Non-Recycled Waste (x 1,000 tons) 4 10 12 6
- Landfill Non-hazardous (x 1,000 tons) 3 4 10 3
- Landfill Hazardous (x 1,000 tons) 0 1 0 2
- Off-site Incineration without Heat recovery (x 1,000 tons) 1 5 3 0
% Recycling 92% 91% 65% 44%
Emissions to Air and Various        
VOC (x 1,000 tons) 4.9 0.9 0.2 0.6
NOX (x 1,000 tons) 0.3 0.3 0.1 0
SO2 (x 1,000 tons) 0.27 0 0.01 0
Number of non-monetary sanctions 0 0 4 0
Total monetary value of fines (€ x 1,000) 128 0 0 0
  APAC Europe North America Latin America
Energy and GHG        
Total Primary Energy (PJ) 5 11.9 5.3 0.4
% Renewable Electricity purchased 1% 12% 0% 57%
Total scope 1 + 2 CO2e emissions (x million tons) - Location based 0.44 0.71 0.29 0.02
Total scope 1 + 2 CO2e emissions (x million tons) - Market based 0.44 0.69 0.29 0.02
Water        
Total Water use (x million m3) 5.2 94.3 4.5 0.2
Total Water consumption (x million m3) 5.2 12 4.5 0.2
COD (net) (x 1,000 tons) 0.2 1.9 0.3 0
Waste        
Total Process Related Waste (x 1,000 tons) 52 98 39 9
Total Recycled Waste (x 1,000 tons) 45 87 29 4
Total Non-Recycled Waste (x 1,000 tons) 6 11 10 6
- Landfill Non-hazardous (x 1,000 tons) 4 2 7 5
- Landfill Hazardous (x 1,000 tons) 0 1 0 0
- Off-site Incineration without Heat recovery (x 1,000 tons) 2 9 3 0
% Recycling 88% 89% 74% 39%
Emissions to Air and Various        
VOC (x 1,000 tons) 7.3 0.9 0.2 0.5
NOX (x 1,000 tons) 0.4 0.3 0.1 0
SO2 (x 1,000 tons) 0.32 0 0.01 0
Number of non-monetary sanctions 1 0 1 0
Total monetary value of fines (€ x 1,000) 26 0 2 0

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  • Product stewardship

    We work tirelessly to manage and minimize all possible adverse effects of our products on people and the environment, across the entire value chain.

  • Stakeholder engagement

    With its scientific resources and knowledge DSM has a unique opportunity to influence and shape the sustainability agenda, but we cannot do it alone.

  • Brighter Living Solutions

    DSM’s Brighter Living Solutions are profitable products and innovations that have a measurably better impact on the planet and people.

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