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Pfizer Integrated Report: Emissions Up Relative to Sales

Pfizer’s absolute scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions fell 4.8 percent from 2011 to 2012, to 2.4 million metric tons CO2e, while its revenue fell by 9.6 percent, according to the company’s third integrated annual review, which summarizes the company’s 2012 financial, environmental and social responsibility performance.

Pfizer says it took only four years, from 2008 to 2012, to meet a five-year public goal of cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 20 percent. But year-by-year, relative to sales, emissions rose. Revenues fell from $65.3 billion in 2011 to $60 billion in 2012. 

Highlights only

The review gives only a few highlights of the company’s environmental performance. The report PDF has two pages specifically on the environment, taking readers to the company’s Protecting the Environment web pages for further information. Stakeholders looking for hard numbers are referred to Pfizer’s environmental, health and safety dashboard document, but this only provides results through 2011. The company says it will include updated results in an EHS report by mid-year.

Among the few environmental results reported, Pfizer says it obtained 25 percent of electricity from solar, wind, hydro and cogeneration. The company says energy efficiency actions saved $85 million from 2008 to 2012.

Waste

The review reports that waste generation fell by 4.7 percent from 2011 to 2012, to 186,000 metric tons – again, a smaller drop than that for revenue. The company says it reduced waste generation by applying green chemistry principles in its research, development and manufacturing; exploring means to reuse, recover or recycle solvents; developing action plans for waste minimization; supporting waste reduction and recycling across its supply chain; and conducting pre-selection waste vendor audits and follow-on assessments.

Pfizer says it has stopped reporting spent process solvents as waste, where they are re-used onsite for manufacturing. Based on corrected data, the company’s overall recycling rate was 32 percent, and the quantity of hazardous and non-hazardous waste decreased 5 percent and 3 percent respectively from 2011. 

Water

The company’s water withdrawal was essentially unchanged from 2011, and was 50.7 million cubic meters in 2012. Pfizer says it is addressing water consumption by re-circulating water for air scrubbers, reducing water use in activated carbon systems, reusing water in cooling towers, treating wastewater for landscape irrigation, collecting rain to replenish wells, decreasing loading to the dionization water process, and repairing leaks in freshwater distribution lines. The company says it has mapped locations for operations, including top suppliers, in water scarce areas.

Other environmental projects

Pfizer also says it issued guides for colleagues to adopt greener practices in travel, printing, and energy savings; and participated in creating an industry carbon footprint guide for the UK’s National Health Service.

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