10.4 Use of Water and Emissions into Water

The continuous availability of clean water in sufficient quantities is essential for supplying our production sites and the surrounding areas. However, this can no longer be taken for granted in many parts of the world. We plan to design our water supply in such a way that industrial water usage continues not to lead to local problems such as a shortage of water for the people living in the area.

Our Water Position commits us to compliance with international and local legislation and to fulfilling the strictest requirements worldwide while at the same time ensuring the reliable operation of our production facilities. The goal is to protect water as a resource and use it efficiently.

In their respective directives, our subgroups have defined responsible water use, ranging from resource-friendly usage to appropriate disposal of wastewater, and anchored implementation in their HSEQ stands for health, safety, environment and quality. management systems.

Group target 2017:

establishment of water management at all sites in water-scarce areas

As part of our Water Position, we used the WBCSD Global Water Tool™ to identify all Bayer sites that are located in regions affected or threatened by water shortage. In line with our Group target, these sites are to establish a water management system with local targets by 2017. The sites concerned are analyzed annually, including an evaluation of their water usage, quality and discharge data. In addition, site-specific initiatives that enable the reuse of water and thus contribute to reducing water consumption are also examined and evaluated. Results of the current analysis show that an effective water management system is already in place at around 58% of the sites examined.

Although the framework conditions for sites can differ very considerably according to region, some measures successfully implemented at several sites have already been seen to be effective. These include both in-house water treatment plants to make river water usable and river water reservoirs to avoid having to take drinking water from local water suppliers even when water levels are low. Further effective steps for pursuing the water target include continuous analysis of wastewater in line with site-specific performance indicators and training new employees in responsible water usage.

Awareness of this issue is being raised through ongoing Group-wide dialogue. Equally important in this is active participation in forums and discussions on this subject with government officials and other stakeholders. The next step will be to agree specific measures for the targeted development at those sites with identified potential for improvement.

Bayer supports the CEO Water Mandate of the U.N. Global Compact with the goal of working with key stakeholders to develop sustainable strategies for water usage. In our annual response to the CDP (formerly Carbon Disclosure Project) is an independent, not-for-profit organization that works on behalf of analysts and investors to promote the transparent reporting of greenhouse gas emissions and water use (Water Disclosure Report) by companies. CDP publishes two climate rankings each year: the Climate Disclosure Leadership Index (CDLI) rates the extent and quality of the disclosure of climate-relevant data, while the best-rated companies are additionally listed in the Climate Performance Leadership Index (CPLI). Water Disclosure, we report in detail on our water usage, the company-specific water footprint and the associated opportunities and risks. This represents a progress report for the CEO Water Mandate.

Water consumption and usage

In 2015, total water consumption in the Group fell by 1.1% to around 346 million cubic meters.

Some 73% of all water used by Bayer is cooling water. This water is only heated and does not come into contact with products. It can be returned to the water cycle without further treatment in line with the relevant official permits. The total volume of once-through cooling water was around 240 million cubic meters in 2015. In our production activities, we endeavor to use water several times and to recycle it. Water is currently recycled at 35 sites, e.g. in closed cooling cycles, or through the reuse of treated wastewater or the recirculation of steam condensates as process water. A total of 10.5 million cubic meters of water were reused in 2015.

Online annex: 3-10.4-1:

limited assurance

The diagram shows the distribution of the different types of water usage within the Bayer Group.

Water Use in the Bayer Group in 2015 (million m3)

Water Use in the Bayer Group in 2015 (million m3) (graph)Water Use in the Bayer Group in 2015 (million m3) (graph)

Water was essentially obtained from the same sources as in the previous year.

Net Water Intake by Source

 

 

2011

 

2012

 

2013

 

2014

 

2015

Water consumption (million m3 p.a.)

 

411

 

384

 

361

 

350

 

346

Proportion from surface water (%)

 

65

 

64

 

63

 

63

 

61

Proportion from boreholes / springs (%)

 

31

 

32

 

33

 

32

 

34

Proportion from public drinking water supplies (%)

 

2

 

2

 

3

 

3

 

3

Proportion from other sources, generally rainwater (%)

 

2

 

2

 

2

 

2

 

2

Wastewater and wastewater discharges

The total volume of process wastewater fell by 7.7%. All wastewater is subject to strict monitoring and analysis before it is discharged into disposal channels. 81.9% of Bayer’s process wastewater worldwide is purified at wastewater treatment plants (Bayer or third-party facilities). Following careful analysis, the remaining volume was categorized as environmentally safe according to official provisions. Part of it contained nutrients and was therefore used to water gardens and agricultural land, as in the previous year.

Volume of Process Wastewater

 

 

2011

 

2012

 

2013

 

2014

 

2015

Volume of process wastewater (million m3)

 

72

 

65

 

63

 

66

 

61

The goal is to minimize emissions into wastewater. Total emissions of nitrogen compounds into wastewater fell by 26.1% in 2015. The main factors behind this reduction were the decrease in production at CropScience’s Dormagen site in Germany and the fact that the Denitrification is the bacterial breakdown of nitrate into nitrogen and oxygen through certain microorganisms known as denitrifiers. The process is used in biological wastewater treatment to break down nitrogen compounds. process at Covestro’s Baytown site in Texas in the United States operated without interruption again in 2015. Discharges of phosphates into wastewater rose by 2.0% in 2015. Total organic carbon (TOC) emissions, however, decreased by 3.3%.

Emissions into Water

 

 

2011

 

2012

 

2013

 

2014

 

2015

1

Total organic carbon

2

Chemical oxygen demand; calculated value based on TOC figures (TOC x 3 = COD)

Phosphorus (1,000 metric tons p.a.)

 

0.08

 

0.15

 

0.11

 

0.10

 

0.10

Nitrogen (1,000 metric tons p.a.)

 

0.53

 

0.70

 

0.69

 

0.76

 

0.56

Nitrogen (kg per metric ton of manufactured sales volume)

 

0.0486

 

0.0624

 

0.0620

 

0.0671

 

0.0483

TOC1 (1,000 metric tons p.a.)

 

1.50

 

1.42

 

1.53

 

1.20

 

1.16

TOC (kg per metric ton of manufactured sales volume)

 

0.137

 

0.126

 

0.138

 

0.105

 

0.100

Heavy metals (1,000 metric tons p.a.)

 

0.0108

 

0.0098

 

0.0091

 

0.0063

 

0.0064

Inorganic salts (1,000 metric tons p.a.)

 

926

 

1,048

 

946

 

845

 

927

COD2 (1,000 metric tons p.a.)

 

4.51

 

4.25

 

4.58

 

3.59

 

3.48