Vallourec’s journey toward a low-carbon footprint started in 2008 with The Greenhouse program. The objective was to reduce the company’s energy consumption by 20% within 12 years. Despite Vallourec’s footprint significantly changing between 2008 and 2020, with the addition of a new mill, a 17% reduction was still reached by 2020. This reduction was achieved by improving its energy efficiency through process communities and best practices as well as significant investments in best available technologies.
Vallourec continues their commitment to reducing its CO2 equivalent emissions with a target of (in Mt) 25% reduction by 2025. The company has also had a commitment to the UN Global Compact since 2010.
Since 2015 the emissions of Vallourec’s processes (i.e., Scope 1) have decreased significantly due to a better consideration of the role of the company’s forest and the improvement of its energy performance. Currently, 57% of production is from sites certified to the ISO 50001 Standard for Energy Management, with NA targeting certification in 2022.
Other environmental accomplishments include 46% of Vallourec’s energy is consumed from renewable sources; 88% of the electricity it consumes is low carbon (nuclear + renewables); 97% of the company’s waste is recycled; 48% of steel is made with recycled scrap; 71% of hazardous substances (CMR) have been eradicated; and 85% of transportation to customers is done by sea, rail or inland waterways.
Vallourec North America has sustained a greater than 90% waste recycling rate since 2016, achieving 91% in 2020 and 93% YTD in 2021. The company’s electric arc furnace steel making operations allow it to use more than 95% recycled materials for steel production while using carbon neutral (nuclear) electricity. Vallourec NA recycles more than 1.5 billion pounds of scrap steel annually to manufacture its products. The products Vallourec produces are 100% recyclable representing a continuous life cycle. At Vallourec’s main North American production hub, it has achieved a 99% overall water reuse and recycling rate. Since September 2020, Vallourec has returned more than 134 tons of used plastic and composite thread protectors for reuse or recycling, both internally and from customer sites.
As of 2020, 23% of Vallourec’s executives are female. According to the company’s latest internal opinion poll, 75.5% of employees are satisfied.
Vallourec allocates $3 million to actions benefitting local communities.
In addition, Vallourec has an Integrity Hotline where anyone (including suppliers) can report any observations that run contrary to the values and principles of the code of ethics. This may include anti-competitive practices, corruption, harassment, discrimination and/or illegal use of personal data.
At year-end 2018, Vallourec applied to the SBTi to establish its medium/long-term objectives as compatible with the Paris Agreement’s goal of containing global warming to 2 C. Vallourec’s 2025 targets received SBTi approval in May 2020.
Vallourec also develops solutions related to circular economy. This is the case with “Asset Up,” a solution designed to give a second life to its customers’ dormant stock.
A procedure that includes an EcoConception review for all new projects has been in place since 2015. This process ensures that best practices and techniques available for HSE-friendly design are properly considered. In the context of R&D projects, special attention is also paid to the supply chain and the use of future products.
CSR is at the heart of Vallourec’s Strategic Sourcing policy. The company utilizes a CSR rating called Ecovadis to analyze its supply base. In 2020, 65% of Vallourec’s NA spend was under this CSR analysis. If a supplier has a low score card, Vallourec identifies them as risky within its Global Procurement Tool and tracks its effort until they have achieved a higher rating. Also, if a supplier has an ethics score below 30, Vallourec identifies and encourages an improvement. Lastly, Vallourec requires Ecovadis as part of its contract award, which enforces that suppliers with a spend of more than $1 million complete the analysis.