A message from the CEO
I am pleased to report that Renewi is on a strong, upward trajectory with its sustainability performance. Giving new life to used materials is the very essence of this company and it is also at the heart of one the most pressing sustainability challenges of our time: climate change.
|Our role is to slow down the need to extract and process virgin resources by producing high quality secondary alternatives. This puts us at the heart of both climate action and resource preservation.|
We continue to strengthen our ambitions and commitment to each of our sustainability pillars: enable the circular economy, reduce its carbon footprint and care for people. I am very happy to report that we have made sound progress in each of these areas.
In FY23, our recycling rate increased to 63.6%, up from 61.8% last year. We put 7mT of secondary materials put back into re-use and achieved a total carbon avoidance of 2.5mT. We also decontaminated 1mT of wastewater, an achievement we are particularly proud of in light of current droughts in parts of Europe. Major environmental incidents and fires decreased significantly from 19 in FY22 to three in FY23.
We made significant progress in key aspects of sustainability reporting too, alongside disclosure and target setting. We introduced new and better calculations to measure our recycling rate and carbon footprint, with greater transparency in line with leading international standards. Our Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions methodology was externally validated. We’re also committing to net-zero and an application for SBTi (the Science Based Targets Initiative) is underway. At Board level we are installing a Sustainability Committee to further drive our ESG efforts.
CARE FOR PEOPLE AND SAFETY
Caring for our people is an essential core value at Renewi. Their wellbeing is paramount and ensures we are able to deliver on our purpose. I am delighted to report that our employee Net Promoter Score has further increased to 24 (FY22: 18).
Safety is our number one value, and we have further reinforced our unconditional commitment to embed the highest safety standards. Improving our safety culture will continue to be a key area of focus, with a strong emphasis on safety leadership. We are in the process of implementing the International Sustainability Rating System (ISRS), which includes a comprehensive safety approach, across the entire company.
Other highlights included opening our new state-of-the-art advanced sorting facility in Ghent, achieving a >50% recycling rate on a 125Kt residual waste stream which was previously incinerated. During the year, we acquired Renewi Westpoort from Paro to further strengthen our waste-to-product mission and continue to explore new uses for our secondary materials, with a landmark deal signed with Playmobil to produce a range of toys containing >80% recycled plastics provided by our Coolrec business.
In addition, we recently received an award for a fully closed loop solution with Electrolux where inner liners for new fridges are to be made of >70% recycled fridge plastics from Coolrec. We are proud to be a major operator in the Netherlands and Belgium, where the adoption of the circular economy is one of the highest within Europe.
Our activities are driven by an increasingly favourable legislative environment, and we expect governments will continue to legislate to mandate higher levels of recycling in the future. The drive from Governments and industry towards decarbonisation has continued to gain momentum, manifesting in an increasing demand for secondary materials from manufacturers, and more legislation aimed at increasing recycling rates both from domestic consumers and corporate entities.
There’s still much to do and we have set ambitious targets for 2025 and 2030 horizons. We have embedded significant expertise that can be brought into other territories that will inevitably legislate to bring circularity into their own economies. Circularity and recycling must be the force behind climate action - systems changes around the re-use of materials and giving waste new life are crucial for the transition to a circular economy.
This drives what we do at Renewi while it is our values that guide us. Our employees are passionate about making a positive difference and we are grateful for their dedication and proud of our role in society. We remain confident we can continue to build and grow our positive impact.