Sustainability in Focus: Heraeus Precious Metals Releases Sustainability Report on Progress and Ambitious Goals

Hanau, 5th October 2023

  • Under the slogan “Precious to us,” the company presents strategies, objectives, and progress in the areas of climate, resources, and people.

Heraeus Precious Metals has released its first sustainability report. With the commitment of “Precious to us,” the company emphasizes its dedication to action in the three areas of climate, resources, and people. The report transparently presents the strategy, objectives, and progress in these areas using key performance indicators, demonstrating Heraeus Precious Metals' ongoing efforts towards sustainable corporate orientation. The sustainability activities are aligned with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Precious metals are essential for technological transformation and play an indispensable role in shaping a more sustainable future. They help battle cancer in pharmaceutical ingredients, clean exhaust air with catalysts, or enable the production and transportation of green hydrogen. The precious metals division of the Heraeus Group is committed to realizing the enormous potential of precious metals as responsibly as possible and taking a leading role within the entire industry.

“We firmly believe that future business growth can and must only be achieved sustainably,” emphasizes André Christl, CEO of Heraeus Precious Metals. “Therefore, we not only apply strict standards for our own business activities but also expect this from our partners along the entire value chain.”

Our pledge to responsibility

Actions in Three Focus Areas: Climate, Resources, and People

A stated goal of Heraeus Precious Metals is carbon neutrality: by 2025, Heraeus Precious Metals will be carbon neutral for its own business activities and completely eliminate fossil fuel use by 2033. Emissions along its supply chain (Scope 3) are targeted to be reduced by 50% by 2033. Key levers for achieving net-zero include reducing energy consumption, transitioning to electrified processes, and sourcing 100% green energy.

As one of the world's largest recycler and refiner, the company promotes efficient and responsible resource management. Through recycling, precious metals can be kept in a continuous loop with a significantly lower carbon footprint compared to primary materials. Heraeus Precious Metals will invest approximately €300 million in expanding recycling capacities in Europe, Asia, and North America by 2026. Currently, 60% of the processed platinum group metals come from secondary sources, and the company aims to further increase their share.

The well-being and interests of employees are of high importance to Heraeus Precious Metals. Workplace safety plays a crucial role in this regard: the top priority is to ensure a healthy and safe working environment. This is achieved through a comprehensive management system for health and occupational safety as well as firmly established internal guidelines.

Other important components of the corporate culture are diversity, equity, and inclusion. To foster different perspectives and experiences, Heraeus Precious Metals has already set ambitious diversity targets in 2019: by 2025, the Global Management Team will consist of 40% women and 50% international employees. The company is already well on track, having surpassed its original goal of 35% female representation in the Global Management Team in 2021 and has therefore raised its target.

The company's commitment extends to the people in surrounding communities and along the value chain. Through close collaboration with its precious metal partners, Heraeus Precious Metals ensures compliance with social, environmental, and ethical standards, particularly regarding the protection of human rights. The company aligns with international industry standards and supplements them with its own, even more stringent, guidelines.

“Sustainability is not only relevant to our own business but extends throughout our entire value chain,” highlights Svea Scherleithner, Global Head of Sustainability at Heraeus Precious Metals. “Through partnerships with our suppliers and customers, we strive to propel positive change across the entire industry.”

The report is prepared in accordance with the standards of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI). It is available exclusively in electronic form in English and can be downloaded here:  Sustainability Report 2022 .