Neste calls for collaborative efforts across industries to continue transformational change within the palm oil industry
Neste Corporation News 27 September 2018 at 4.30 pm (EET)
This news has been updated on 28 September 2018
Greenpeace International published a report ”The Final Countdown” on 19 September, 2018. The report suggests that despite the recent positive developments in the palm oil industry, some unsustainable activities remain.
The Greenpeace report identifies large global companies sourcing materials from palm oil producers that may have links to unsustainable practices. It is not a surprise that Neste is not named in the report as the biofuels industry continues being the only industry legally required to have traceable supply chains and report on the actual sustainability performance, e.g. greenhouse gas emissions of the raw materials they use.
All studies on the actual performance of the industry players are beneficial. We fully agree with Greenpeace in that illegal expansion to forests and peatlands needs to end for good. Identifying and bringing up shortcomings is important, and all relevant cases should be handled by multi-stakeholder grievance processes, as remediation and corrective actions are most effectively carried out this way.
Lasting, large-scale sustainability transformation within the palm oil industry can only be resolved through improving transparency of all palm oil users and by tightening cooperation among all stakeholders, including the authorities. In this work, NGOs have a meaningful role to play. We continue our active role also in these collaborative efforts.
We are determined to continue making a positive impact on the sustainability practices within the palm oil industry. We continue pushing the palm oil growers to commit to and implement No Deforestation policies that go beyond the regulatory requirements.
Claims referring to sustainability violations thoroughly investigated
We have investigated our palm oil supply chain and compared it to Greenpeace's report. On 28 September we found out, that we do not source crude palm oil from the companies mentioned in the Greenpeace report. Further investigations are ongoing.
We take all claims referring to potential sustainability violations in our raw material supply chains very seriously and continue investigating the observations and findings detailed in the report to determine what type of action should follow. This investigation is carried out in cooperation with the palm oil growers and traders to thoroughly understand the situation. Our work is supported by sustainability expert organization Consortium of Resource Experts (CORE) and based on large background data on the situation in Malaysia and Indonesia. Local expertise and non-governmental agencies (NGO) are engaged in the process, as well.
We have a clear stand against any actions that would cause deforestation. We do not accept any actions violating sustainability principles as defined e.g. in RSPO or ISCC standards, or in separate NDPE (No Deforestation, No Peat, No Exploitation) commitments. We are committed to preventing deforestation in our own supply chains, and require the same from all our raw material suppliers. Neste’s efforts to manage deforestation risks were evaluated as belonging to the leading performers’ Leadership class in the CDP Forests program in 2017.
Thorough investigation will take some time due to the complexity of the reported issues and because some of the issues seem to refer to cases that seem old. We are known for acting responsibly if wrongdoing has taken place.
Globally, deforestation is under ongoing monitoring, and several operators are providing their results, (see, e.g. https://www.wri.org/blog/2018/08/indonesias-deforestation-dropped-60-percent-2017-theres-more-do and https://www.globalforestwatch.org)
Pekka Tuovinen, Senior Advisor, Sustainability, tel. +358 10 458 4516, pekka.tuovinen(at)neste.com
Global 100 listed Neste as the world’s 2nd most sustainable company in 2018. Just recently, Neste was selected for inclusion in the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices (DJSI) for the 12th consecutive year.
Palm oil continues being one of the raw materials Neste uses. In 2017, palm oil accounted for some 20% of the renewable raw materials we used while waste and residue fats and oils accounted for nearly 80%. All the palm oil we have used has been fully traceable to the plantation level since 2007, and 100% certified since 2013. Neste’s sourcing accounts for less than 1% of the global consumption of palm oil.
More about the sustainably-produced palm oil we use.
Neste has showed leading transparency and sustainability practices in the palm oil industry for over a decade. Our palm oil supply chain is fully public with which we hope to enable third parties, such as NGOs, to help us monitor our supply chain. We are working towards achieving similar level of transparency with other raw materials, as well.
More about traceability of the palm oil we use https://www.neste.com/corporate-info/sustainability/sustainable-supply-chain/palm-oil-traceability
Neste continues to set strict sustainability requirements for its suppliers. They are included in the terms of our supply contracts, compliance of which we control with reporting and auditing. We also continue our active work against deforestation and promoting better practices via stakeholder engagement and all the channels enabling multistakeholder collaboration (e.g. RSPO).
Neste in brief
Neste (NESTE, Nasdaq Helsinki) creates sustainable solutions for transport, business, and consumer needs. Our wide range of renewable products enable our customers to reduce climate emissions. We are the world's largest producer of renewable diesel refined from waste and residues, introducing renewable solutions also to the aviation and plastics industries. We are also a technologically advanced refiner of high-quality oil products. We want to be a reliable partner with widely valued expertise, research, and sustainable operations. In 2017, Neste's revenue stood at EUR 13.2 billion. In 2018, Neste placed 2nd on the Global 100 list of the most sustainable companies in the world. Read more: neste.com