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Transforming Sustainability Strategy into Action: The Chemical Industry

Beth Beloff (Editor), Marianne Lines (Editor), Dicksen Tanzil (Editor)
ISBN: 978-0-471-75598-2
541 pages
October 2005
Transforming Sustainability Strategy into Action: The Chemical Industry (0471755982) cover image


"A highly informative and brilliant contribution to the growing sustainability literature."
-Dr. Brian and Mary Nattrass Managing Partners of Sustainability Partners and authors of The Natural Step for Business and Dancing with the Tiger

The goal of sustainable development, a recent focus in the corporate world, is to "ensure a better quality of life for everyone today and in generations to come." The challenge facing industry leaders is how to reconcile economically competitive strategies with environmentally sound and socially responsible practices.

Transforming Sustainability Strategy into Action: The Chemical Industry presents proven practical techniques to help managers in the chemical industry identify and assess options for improving the sustainability of their organizations, with a pragmatic emphasis on operational aspects, decision support, and guidelines for measuring progress. Employing a systematic approach and introducing globally proven problem-solving and decision-making tools designed to provoke questioning and creative thinking, the authors address some of the most challenging issues for the industrial world today.

The authors' combined expertise and extensive experience in translating sustainability strategies from theory into action make them uniquely qualified to deliver the kind of hands-on, responsive business solutions that will give corporate leaders the competitive edge in preparing for tomorrow's socially and environmentally conscious marketplace.
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Table of Contents



1. Introduction.

2. Addressing Sustainability in the Chemical Industry (Marianne Lines (BRIDGES to Sustainability)).

2.1 Introduction.

2.2 Understanding the Chemical Industry.

2.3 Drivers of Sustainability.

2.4 The Role of Responsible Care in Advancing Sustainable Development.

2.5 Challenges Ahead.

3. Views on Key Issues Facing the Chemical Industry.

3.1 Introduction (Marianne Lines (BRIDGES to Sustainability)).

3.2 The Chemical Industry and the Public: Will the Chemical Experiment Continue? (Beverley Thorpe (Clean Production Action)).

3.3 Risk Assessment.

3.4 The Limits of Risk Management and the New Chemicals Policies (Ken Geiser (Lowell Center for Sustainable Production, University of Massachusetts–Lowell)).

3.5 Impacts to Human Health and the Environment.

3.6 Impacts of, and Issues Associated with, Chemical Production from Manufacture to Final Use and Disposal (Richard Sigman (Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development [OECD])).

3.7 Closing the Gap on Chemical Plant Security (Agnes M Shanley (Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Magazine)).

3.8 Economic Issues and Competitiveness (Peter H Spitz (Chemical Advisory Partners)).

4. Planning for Sustainability (Beth Beloff (BRIDGES to Sustainability)).

4.1 Introduction.

4.2 GEMI’s Approach to Sustainable Development Planning (Elizabeth C Girardi Schoen (Pfizer, Inc.), Stephen Poltorzycki (The Boston Environmental Group)).

4.3 Environmental Management Systems (EMS) Frameworks for Sustainability.

4.4 The Natural Step Framework: Backcasting from Principles of Sustainability (Karl-Henrik Robe`rt (Blekinge Technical University and The Natural Step, Stockholm), Sissel Waage (The Natural Step, USA) and Dicksen Tanzil (BRIDGES to Sustainability)).

4.5 Natural Capitalism for the Chemical Industry (Catherine Greener (Rocky Mountain Institute)).

4.6 Sustainable Value in the Chemical Industry (Dave Sherman (Sustainable Value Partners)).

4.7 CSR/SRI Reporting Complexity and the Future 500 CAP Gap Audit: An Opportunity for Improved Strategic Business Planning and Stakeholder Alignment (Cate Gable (Future500)).

5. Designing for Sustainability.

5.1 Introduction.

5.2 Cradle-to-Cradle Material Assessment and Product Design (Lauren Heine (GreenBlue)).

5.3 Principles of Sustainable Engineering (Martin A Abraham (University of Toledo)).

6. Implementing Sustainable Development: Decision-Support Approaches and Tools.

6.1 Assessing Impacts: Indicators and Metrics.

6.2 Assessing Values: Costs and Benefits.

6.3 Auditing Sustainability Performance.

6.4 Reporting Sustainability Performance: Latest Trends in Corporate Reporting, New Tools, and Practices (Stephanie Meyer (Stratos Inc.)).

6.5 Security and Sustainability (Scott Berger (American Institute of Chemical Engineers [AIChE])).

6.6 Building Corporate Social Responsibility (Neil Smith and Joan Bigham (Smith O’Brien)).

7. Future Directions for the Chemical Industry.

7.1 Sustainable Directions for the Chemical Industry: A Look to the Future (Ken Geiser (Lowell Center for Sustainable Production, University of Massachusetts–Lowell)).

7.2 Rethinking Products.

7.3 New Directions.

8. The Business Case for Sustainable Development.

8.1 Introduction.

8.2 PricewaterhouseCoopers/ BRIDGES Survey Results) (Andrew Savitz, Douglas Hileman and Michael Besly (PricewaterhouseCoopers, LLP)).

8.3 Sustainability and Performance: An Overview (Karina Funk (Massachusetts Renewable Energy Trust)).

8.4 DuPont: Growing Sustainably (Dicksen Tanzil (BRIDGES to Sustainability), Dawn G Rittenhouse (DuPont), Beth R Beloff (BRIDGES to Sustainability)).

8.5 Business Value from Sustainable Development at shell (Mark Wade (Shell International Limited) and Joe Machado (Shell Chemical LP)).

8.6 Sustainable Development: An Integral Part of BASF’s Corporate Values (Ernst Schwanhold (BASF Aktiengesellschaft)).

8.7 The GSK Approach to Sustainable Development (David J C Constable, Alan Curzons, Ailsa Duncan, Concepcion Jiménez-González and Virginia L Cunningham (Glaxo Smith Kline, USA)).

8.8 Moving 3M Toward Sustainability: The Business Case for Sustainable Development (Keith J Miller (3M)).

8.9 Achieving Business Value: The Investment Community Perspective on the Importance of Including Environmental and Social Aspects in Valuations (Don Reed (ECOS Corporation)).

8.10 Investment Analysis: Dow and Bhopal, India (Marc Brammer (Innovest Strategic Value Advisors)).

8.11 Scientific, Political, and Investor Drivers of Chemical Industry Sustainability: An NGO Perspective (Richard Liroff (WWF)).

8.12 The Role of Leadership and Corporate Governance (David Robert Taschler (Air Products & Chemicals, Inc.)).

Appendix 1: Responsible Care® Global Charter.

Appendix 2: Directory of Standards and CSR-Related Organizations.

Appendix 3: Author Biographies.


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Author Information

BETH BELOFF is President and founder of BRIDGES to Sustainability, a well-respected nonprofit organization dedicated to the practical implementation of sustainability in business and industry. She is an expert in integrating sustainable development with other business aspects and, in particular, a thought leader in measuring sustainability performance. Beloff has coauthored many publications on environmental accounting and sustainability performance assessment, and has received awards and grants from a variety of industrial, government, and nonprofit sources.

MARIANNE LINES, a Senior Associate at BRIDGES to Sustainability and Principal of Clear Lines Collaborations, works with a wide range of private and public sector clients to improve their sustainability performance. Under her leadership, the Canadian Centre for Pollution Prevention became renowned for its capacity to help organizations incorporate pollution prevention into their business planning and decision-making. Recognized for creating lasting alliances and inspiring collaborative action, Lines is the recipient of several prestigious awards for her efforts to foster environmental and business partnerships.

DICKSEN TANZIL is Research Director at BRIDGES to Sustainability. Trained as a chemical engineer, Tanzil has served as technical lead on various research and advisory projects involving life-cycle assessment, total cost assessment, and sustainability indicators and metrics.
Beloff and Tanzil have recently joined Golder Associates, Inc., to develop its sustainability practices in North America.

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"...an excellent description of the state of the chemical industry with regard to sustainability...it is a daunting, virtually impossible task to do credit to the wide-ranging discussion in this book." (Journal of Hazardous Materials, August 2006)

"...a very significant addition to the efforts to advance sustainable development. It will be widely read and applied by those who are working in the chemical industry." (Journal of Environmental Quality, March/April 2006)

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