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Novelis building sustainable enterprise through disruptive innovation

Novelis, which has a UK base in Warrington, is the world leader in aluminium rolling and recycling. The company recently announced significant progress in its commitment toward reducing its carbon footprint and delivering on key measures of sustainable business performance. Among the milestones detailed in “Sustainability Through Disruptive ‘Innovation,” the company’s third annual sustainability report, … Continued

Novelis, which has a UK base in Warrington, is the world leader in aluminium rolling and recycling. The company recently announced significant progress in its commitment toward reducing its carbon footprint and delivering on key measures of sustainable business performance. Among the milestones detailed in “Sustainability Through Disruptive ‘Innovation,” the company’s third annual sustainability report, is an increase in the recycled content of its products from 33 percent to 43 percent in the first two years since announcing its ambitious target to achieve 80 percent recycled content by 2020. Novelis also became the world’s largest recycler of aluminium last year as it continues to expand its recycling capacity around the world.

“Our intent when we established our sustainability targets two years ago was to transcend the incremental approach by radically transforming our company – and, in the process, lead the way in our industry,” said Phil Martens, Novelis President and Chief Executive Officer. “This approach is driving changes in the way we source inputs, structure our supply chain, make capital investments, develop our products and engage with our customers. We are still in the early stages of our sustainability journey, with many hurdles yet to overcome, but our efforts are already beginning to bear fruit. I am more firmly convinced than ever that our commitment to sustainability will be the key value driver for our company going forward.”

Other highlights of the comprehensive report include the following results versus baseline performance using the average of fiscal years 2007–2009:

• A 19 percent reduction in energy intensity, more than halfway to its goal of 39 percent
• A 16 percent reduction in water intensity, more than halfway to its goal of 25 percent
• A 14 percent reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, representing significant progress towards reaching its total goal of halving Novelis’ absolute GHGs

“I have come to the firm conclusion that leaders at Novelis are transformers who are willing and able to stake out a new direction for their company — one that will disrupt current industry structure and leapfrog toward a more sustainable world,” said Stuart Hart, S.C. Johnson Chair in Sustainable Global Enterprise, Cornell University, and a member of the Novelis Sustainability Council. “Novelis aims to reinvent the entire industry to become more environmentally sustainable and socially inclusive. If successful, this strategy could make them the most dominant and profitable player in the sector for decades to come. This is the epitome of sustainable enterprise.”

In the last year, the company’s sustainability strategy drove the development of evercan™, the world’s first independently certified, high-recycled content aluminum beverage can sheet. The 2 product is a packaging breakthrough that delivers sustainability benefits to customers and end consumers.

The company also continues to make significant progress in its long-term recycling objectives and the path to 50 percent recycled inputs by 2015 is clear. This progress is enabled by investments of close to £310 million to nearly double the company’s recycling capacity by middecade. Novelis began operations last year at a new recycling facility in Yeongju, South Korea, the largest fully integrated beverage can recycling system in Asia, and broke ground on a plant in Nachterstedt, Germany, which will be the largest aluminum recycling facility in the world when complete in 2014.

Other important highlights from the past year include:

• Launched Novelis supplier code of conduct, to further the company’s responsible sourcing objectives
• Held inaugural Novelis Month of Service, a focused effort to undertake employee volunteer efforts at locations around the world
• Completed second progress report to the United Nations Global Compact
• Introduced an updated employee code of conduct

The report was prepared according to the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) guidelines and checked at application level A. GRI is the world’s most widely used framework for sustainability reporting.

For more information, visit the company’s interactive sustainability website and download the 2013 Novelis Sustainability Report or summary document.

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