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Bayer keeps Emissions Down despite Increased Production

Published on 2005-07-28. Author : SpecialChem

LEVERKUSEN -- Bayer AG has managed to maintain the previous years' low levels of emissions and waste despite considerable increases in production volumes. This has been achieved through continuous advancements in environmental protection, improved processes and rigorous application of recycling options. In some areas even, further reductions were achieved: Emissions of greenhouse gases per ton of product, for example, fell by 14 percent compared with 2003. This information and more can be found in the latest HSE (Health, Safety, Environment) Report for the Bayer Group, which has just been published on the Internet. The data collection system was reviewed and validated by independent auditors.

Values for environmental parameters relating to emissions into the air and water, waste generated and use of resources were at around the same level in 2004 as in 2003. At the same time, total production volumes rose by 22 percent from 12.8 million metric tons in 2003 to 15.6 million metric tons last year. This corresponds to an effective reduction in values.

The figures for greenhouse emissions in particular indicate the advances that have been made in environmentally compatible production. "By modifying processes, utilizing modern technologies, closing outdated facilities and deploying energy-efficient power plants, Bayer has drastically reduced greenhouse gas emissions by more than 60 percent in recent years," said Dr. Udo Oels, Member of the Board of Management responsible for Innovation, Technology and Environment. "By doing so we have already exceeded the ambitious targets set by the German government and the Kyoto Protocol of a reduction of 50 percent by 2020 15 years early."

In 2004 Bayer reduced emissions of greenhouse gases per ton of product by 14 percent compared with 2003, from 0.42 to 0.36 metric tons of emissions per ton of product. The conservation of natural resources in energy generation also plays an important role in the context of the climate change issue. Since 1998, Bayer has reduced energy consumption by 15 percent, in spite of continually increased production.

The amount of waste generated in 2004 corresponded to the 2003 figure. Compared to 1998 the volume of waste in the Bayer Group has even halved. This result has been made possible through continuous improvement in production processes and the use of raw materials that generate less waste, along with divestments and the development of products with a longer service life.

Improved wastewater treatment has led to a significant fall in nitrogen emissions from 3,200 metric tons in 2003 to 2,800 tons in 2004, representing a drop of 13 percent. Measures such as the expansion of the Leverkusen wastewater treatment plant have led to reductions in nitrogen emissions since 1998 of more than half.

The unstinting efforts of the Group to improve occupational safety with a whole host of seminars and campaigns are paying further dividends: The MAQ (number of occupational injuries per million working hours) fell from 3.4 in 2003 to 2.7 in 2004.

Pertinent safety and environmental data were collected at all Bayer locations across the globe, not only at production sites but also in warehouses, research laboratories and administrative facilities. The data collection system was evaluated and verified by the respected auditing company Deloitte.

With regard to the recording and presentation of HSE data, Bayer aligns itself to the guidelines of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), an official collaborating center of the United Nations that draws up international corporate reporting standards. Bayer is the only German company to be actively involved in the development of these guidelines through its participation in international working groups.

In 1995 Bayer was also the first company in the chemicals sector to begin setting itself qualitative and quantitative targets for the continuous improvement of employee safety and the protection of society and the environment, allowing itself to be measured against the attainment of these targets and regularly reporting on progress. Responsible Care is an integral part of Bayer corporate policy and is embodied in its global company culture.

Forward-Looking Statements

This news release contains forward-looking statements based on current assumptions and forecasts made by Bayer Group management. Various known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors could lead to material differences between the actual future results, financial situation, development or performance of the company and the estimates given here. These factors include those discussed in our public reports file with the Frankfurt Stock Exchange and with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (including our Form 20-F). The company assumes no liability whatsoever to update these forward-looking statements or to conform them to future events or developments.

Source: Bayer AG


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