With manufacturing operations all over the world, Seagate is committed to improving environmental sustainability in all of the communities it serves. Seagate sets goals, tracks progress and audits systems to reduce energy, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and waste. Together, these initiatives comprise the bulk of our environmental sustainability efforts. Please refer to our Global Citizenship Annual Report for updates on our program and performance against our targets.
We continue to administer an environmental management system that adheres to industry-leading ISO14001 requirements at 100 percent of our manufacturing facilities. By managing and reducing environmental impacts through this system and following the Responsible Business Alliance Code of Conduct, Seagate demonstrates sustainability leadership as a key supplier in the electronics industry. We also adhere to the ten principles of the United Nations Global Compact, three of which focus on the environmental responsibility of business.
Seagate ISO 14001 Certification.
Seagate’s Environment Health Safety and Sustainability Policy
Manufacturing our drives uses energy and produces GHGs. To combat these realities, Seagate works to reduce the amount of energy and carbon required to produce disk drives by identifying energy efficiency opportunities, auditing management systems and performance and reporting on progress throughout the manufacturing process.
Our primary objective is to reduce both energy use and GHGs per Exabyte (EB) of storage we produce. Across our industry, these types of measurements are known as “energy intensity” and “GHG emissions intensity” because they measure impact relative to the amount of economic activity taking place. How intensity is measured depends on the type of products a company produces; we measure energy and carbon emissions intensity per EB of data storage shipped.
Our two largest sources of GHG emissions are purchased electricity and “fugitive emissions,” or the unintended release of gases. To drive down GHG emissions intensity, each Seagate manufacturing site is required to achieve annual energy efficiency goals.
Seagate conducts a third-party verification of our GHG emissions reporting every year. In addition to keeping track of factory performance for our own records, we share our results via the Carbon Disclosure Project Supply Chain and Investor Questionnaires. We continue to assess risk to the business from climate change as part of our annual ISO14000 management process, and have determined that our climate risks do not differ from other companies in our industry.
Our biggest challenge in this area will be to continue to reduce GHG emissions overall, especially given increasing production volumes and product complexity. In the coming years, Seagate also will expand the scope of its GHG assessment to include additional types of Scope 3 emissions.
Waste is an inevitable part of any manufacturing process. Over the last decade, Seagate has established systems to track, manage and report waste at every one of our factories around the world. Our sites are very active in identifying and implementing waste minimization initiatives, in order to prevent waste from being produced and to recycle or reuse it whenever possible. In addition, we are committed to zero landfill disposal of hazardous waste, except in those cases where no other viable treatment method is available.
Each of our sites is responsible for reporting data on waste to a central database reviewed by Seagate’s Corporate Environment, Health and Safety professionals. Seagate has established minimum requirements for the selection and performance of hazardous waste treatment vendors. We qualify hazardous waste treatment vendors through a third-party audit of set criteria.
We never may be able to eliminate hazardous waste entirely from our production process, but we are steadfast in our efforts to try. This issue will remain one of our biggest challenges.
Water is a key natural resource and warrants proper management to preserve and protect the health of our ecosystem as a whole. Our manufacturing processes withdraw water from local watersheds for use as coolants and cleaning agents at factories. While the amount of water used in product manufacturing has increased somewhat over the past several years (owing to increased production), we have implemented measures to improve water recycling and have achieved significant gains in the same period.
Continuing to improve water recycling and reduce consumption remains one of our biggest opportunities for the months and years ahead.