The aim in this section is to complete the overview of the environmental sustainability process by describing the approach adopted to improve environmental performance resulting from the production and management of waste, pursued through the following activities:
- innovation of production processes, with the aim of preventing the production of waste at the source, progressively reducing processing rejects and replacing current raw materials with other new ones that have a lower environmental impact;
- operating management of generated waste, aimed at identifying and ensuring the selection of waste treatment channels that can maximise recovery and recycling, gradually eliminating the amount sent to the landfill with the Zero Waste to Landfill vision;
- streamlining packaging management, both for the packaging of purchased products and the packaging for products made by the Group.
Pirelli monitors and reports on its own waste production, as measured and communicated by all operating units, using three key indicators:
- absolute production, as measured in tons;
- specific production, as measured in kilograms per ton of finished product;
- specific production, as measured in kilograms per euro of Operating Income.
DISTRIBUTION OF WASTE BY TYPE OF TREATMENT
TYPE OF WASTE
The Industrial Plan that was presented to the international financial community in November 2013 has redesigned the strategy to reduce the impact associated with wastes generated by Pirelli Group manufacturing activities, focusing attention on the value of wastes as a resource and then on its development through recovery activity. By 2020, more than 95% of waste products will be sent for recovery, with Vision Zero Waste to Landfill, extending the approach previously adopted with success at Breuberg in Germany and Rome in the United States to all operating affiliates. As anticipated in the section “Performance Index Trend”, 80% of the wastes were recovered in 2013, resulting an an increase of 4% from the previous year. The same trend was also recorded for the specific quantity of wastes produced, determined principally by conversion and renovation of manufacturing sites. Hazardous wastes represent slight less than 20% of total production and are sent in their entirety to plants located in the same country where they are produced.
Different procedures for handling packaging materials exist for different types of products. While tyres are products generally sold without packaging materials, steel cord involves specific packaging. In this respect it should be pointed out that tyre sales account for over 99% of all Group sales in 2013. To reduce the waste from packaging of the products sold, the Steel Cord Business Unit manages and streamlines the use of packaging materials, in collaboration with its own customers. The purpose of these actions is to increase the quantities of reusable packaging materials, both through their being returned to production sites and through replacement of certain types of packaging with more resistant models that are less subject to wear and tear and thus having a longer life.
More specifically, attention was focused on the replacement of traditional wood pallets with new plastic or metal versions, which have a high rate of reusability. A plastic pallet can be reused about ten times, compared with one or at most two times for a traditional wooden pallet. Reducing waste generates obvious benefits. The data received by the Steel Cord Markets and Logistic Department confirm that beginning in early 2013, 100% of the pallets used in reverse logistic circuits are made of plastic or metal, covering 95% of sales volumes. For the remaining 5% wooden pallets are used, where they are more easy to reuse and recover in the areas where they are dispatched.