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Environmental management and continuous improvement

Our approach

Ambitious targets ensure a strong focus on environmental sustainability across all our operations. We are committed to continuous improvement and regularly report on the environmental performance of our operations. We aim to meet or exceed all environmental regulatory requirements in the regions where
we operate.

Our environmental policy is supported by three mandatory environmental standards around the following:

1) environmental discharges,
2) cooling towers and
3) community impact.

These standards address the highest risks at our sites. Each site must have an environmental management system in place, such as ISO 14001 or equivalent, and must comply with all three environmental standards.

Our Global Sustainability Leadership Council guides Amcor’s work in product stewardship and improving operational and resource efficiency at our manufacturing sites. This is done in close collaboration with our operations, research and development, sales and marketing teams, and procurement departments.

Our performance

To date, 49% of our manufacturing sites have achieved ISO 14001 accreditation for their environmental management systems. The remainder of our sites are either working towards an independently certified environmental management system or have processes and systems in place to ensure compliance with the Amcor environmental standards and local regulations and to identify environmental improvement opportunities. Many of our sites are regularly inspected by national, state and local environmental regulation agencies. We have achieved high levels of compliance with our environmental policy and standards and continue to drive improvements in our environmental management and performance.

Environmental targets and performance

Our approach

We have a strong focus on the efficient use of natural resources. We set goals within our global EnviroAction program, which includes short and long term reduction targets for waste to landfill, GHG emissions and municipal water use. The program drives continuous improvements in environmental performance throughout our operations.

Our performance

With the demerger of the Amcor Australasia and Packaging Distribution (AAPD) business, the number of sites in water stressed areas was considerably reduced. Consequently, our approach to water use has changed. We now require all our manufacturing sites to have water management plans in place, to provide standardised total water use reports and, in water stressed sites, to have risk mitigation plans in place.

Our updated five year EnviroAction targets are:

Greenhouse gas emissions

>> 10% reduction in GHG emissions intensity from FY2010/11 by FY2015/16; and

>> 60% reduction in GHG emissions intensity from FY2005/06 by 2030.

Waste to landfill

>> 50% reduction in waste to landfill intensity from FY2010/11 by FY2015/16; and

>> zero waste to landfill is the long term objective.

Water use

>> 100% of sites will have water management plans in place.

Greenhouse gas emissions

At the end of the third year of our five year target period, we have exceeded our GHG emissions intensity target of 10%, achieving a 19% reduction compared to our baseline year, FY2010/11. This reduction in emissions intensity resulted from our continuing efforts to improve energy efficiency, including new product innovations, waste reduction and solvent recovery at our sites. We created 8.4 million tonnes of GHG emissions in FY2013/14, which is 10.6% less than our baseline year, FY2010/11.

Waste from our operations

Our total waste for FY2013/14 was 321,065 tonnes, and over 80% of this was recycled. At the end of the third year of our five year target period we have exceeded our waste to landfill intensity reduction target of 50%, achieving a 53% reduction, compared to our baseline year, FY2010/11. Our absolute waste to landfill in FY2013/14 was 10.5 kilotonnes (3% of our total waste), a considerable percentage decrease from last year.

Water use

Our sites used 4.28 gigalitres of water for the year, and 96% of sites have water management plans in place. Our water use intensity decreased by 16%, and our absolute water use decreased by 7% compared to our baseline year, FY2010/11. The majority of this water use is attributable to our Rigid Plastics business in the Americas, where it is primarily used for cooling processes within their manufacturing facilities.

Reducing environmental impacts in our value chain

Our approach

We consider the environmental impacts of packaging across the total life cycle of our products, and we apply our extensive packaging expertise to develop the most sustainable packaging solutions for our customers. Additionally, we routinely evaluate the environmental impacts of high risk goods, such as hazardous substances, as part of the environmental management of our operations.

Raw materials and suppliers

We measure the contribution and breakdown of indirect (scope 3) and product GHG emissions to track our progress and direct our efforts towards activities that will have the greatest benefit. Indirect emissions include the purchase of raw materials and fuels and outsourced activities, such as transport, recycling or recovery and waste disposal.

Customers

As part of our value chain, we work with our customers to reduce the GHG emissions, waste and water use associated with the use of our packaging in their factories. We collaborate with our customers in the product development stages to ensure their processes can be made as efficient as possible. For example, we seek to understand our customers’ logistic requirements to develop customised packaging processes to meet their specific needs.

At the end of the product development phase, we conduct a product qualification process. This involves testing at the customer’s production facility to ensure the best operating conditions before scaling up production, reducing waste and improving efficiencies.

Consumer use of packaging

A range of LCA tools help us generate data to make informed decisions about the packaging our customers select. This data also helps our customers respond to consumers’ interests in packaging
sustainability.

Packaging end-of-life

We work with industry associations, not-for-profit groups and governments to investigate and promote beneficial end-of-life options for packaging. This includes options such as recycling, energy recovery and transformation into other products.

Go to Our Marketplace (page 24) for more information on these forums and partnerships. We apply our extensive packaging expertise to develop the most sustainable packaging solutions for our customers.

Our performance

Raw materials and suppliers

The majority of our GHG emissions are indirect (scope 3) emissions; the raw materials used for our manufacturing processes are the greatest contributors.

We have reduced the absolute indirect (scope 3) GHG emissions associated with our raw materials by 9% from our baseline year of FY2010/11.

To learn more about our approach and our performance against our objectives, refer to our current Sustainability Report, available for download. We welcome your feedback.