Driving Safety, Health and Environmental Improvements

With the great emphasis that the company places on safety in all of its operations, Saudi Aramco was keen on participating in the Gulf Petrochemicals and Chemicals Association’s (GPCA) Responsible Care Conference that recently took place in Dubai, UAE. Responsible Care is a unique voluntary global initiative that drives continuous improvement in the environmental, health, safety, and security performance of the chemicals industry. The initiative was adopted by GPCA in 2009, enhancing regional performance and credibility of the chemical industry in the Gulf. There has been a steady increase in the numbers of regional companies joining the initiative and making public commitments to supporting safe chemicals management and promoting sustainability since 2010. By the end of 2014, 98.5% of the GPCA’s full producing members had made public commitments to applying industry standard Responsible Care protocols to their chemicals business. Saudi Aramco’s two domestic chemicals joint ventures, Petro Rabigh and Sadara, are signatories of Responsible Care and have made CEO-level commitments to implement the Responsible Care program at their manufacturing facilities and in their corporate functions. “All of us have not only an ethical but also a commercial obligation to play an active role in Responsible Care,” said Warren W. Wilder, Saudi Aramco vice president of Chemicals and newly appointed chairman of the GPCA’s Responsible Care Committee. Wilder said the challenges that the industry faces in implementing the principles of Responsible Care require shared solutions to battle uneven degrees of commitment to the ethos of safety and sustainability, inadequate public awareness and volatile global forces. “Improved safety in the workplace and for communities and workers, reduced operating costs, and reduced environmental impacts are the obvious benefits for Responsible Care member companies,” said Wilder. “But the emphasis on safety, product performance, resource efficiency, pollution, waste minimization and recycling help not only the companies but also our customers, our suppliers, and our communities.” The three-day conference provided a unique opportunity for industry leaders to explore new business opportunities and communicate with their stakeholders about their products and processes — with a focus on sustainability, process safety, and product stewardship. The Responsible Care Program designed by GPCA is aligned with the initiatives of international entities such as the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), and the International Council of Chemical Association (ICCA).