Protection of People and the Environment

Integrated management system for occupational health, safety, environmental protection and quality

Covestro’s stated aims are to take preventive measures to protect employees, suppliers and service providers, ensure uninterrupted operations and continually improve quality. The head of the integrated management system is commissioned directly by the Board of Management. The integrated management system implemented throughout the Group pertains to the topics of health, safety, environment and quality (HSEQ). The system ensures implementation of the specifications of the HSEQ Group guidelines and is based on internationally recognized standards governing occupational safety (OHSAS 18001), the environment (ISO 14001), energy (ISO 50001) and quality (ISO 9001). Adherence to processes and workflows is regularly verified through internal audits, annual self-assessments and external certifications. The insights we gain from these measures are incorporated into our annual management review. Every process is thus subject to ongoing monitoring and is updated as required. Our existing HSEQ management system corresponds to the requirements of the current ISO 9001:2015 and ISO 14001:2015 standards. In 2019, based on the new ISO standards, it was also successfully reviewed, audited and had its certification upheld by an external certification body. Specific targets in line with the aforementioned ISO standards have been defined. More details on these targets are available in the relevant sections below.

The integrated management system comprises the following three sub-sections:

Occupational health and safety

In the area of occupational health and safety, globally applicable processes and workflows include detailed rules governing the safety of production facilities and manufacturing processes, the investigation of accidents and environmental as well as transportation incidents, health care and occupational safety, and emergency management at Covestro. The rules stipulated by international standards such as OHSAS 18001 comprise the minimum requirements applicable worldwide and are supplemented with additional regulations if needed. These are intended to prevent accidents and incidents at the workplace or on transportation routes that could have adverse consequences for people or the environment. We also offer support to our customers, for example by providing training on the safe handling of our products in and outside of our facilities.

Environment and energy

Minimum environmental and energy standards applicable worldwide were specified to ensure that our high standards for resource conservation and emissions reduction are met. These requirements are based on internationally recognized standards and rules such as ISO 14001 (environmental management) and ISO 50001 (energy management). Each year we analyze and evaluate the effects of our activities on the environment. From our environmental performance assessment, we derive measures to reduce and minimize environmental impacts. Global process and workflow descriptions help us implement these measures throughout the Group. In the year under review, the energy efficiency system we introduced in 2008 based on ISO 50001 was reviewed, audited and had its certification confirmed for the eighth time at the main German production sites by an independent certification body.


We have very high expectations when it comes to the quality of the raw materials we use, and set standards for their processing into high-tech plastics and polyurethane precursors. Within the framework of our integrated management system, our quality management activities meet the requirements of the current, newly revised ISO 9001:2015 standard. In doing so, we are creating the underlying conditions for addressing the customers’ needs to a large degree with regard to our products and services.

Supplementary information

Part of the supplementary sustainability information (not form part of the statutory audit of the annual financial statements)

Audits and certifications

Our binding Group regulations designed to ensure HSEQ targets are accessible to all employees in an internal Group database and are reviewed annually in internal audits and by external certification bodies. This can result in changes to the management system. Coverage of our business activities with certified HSEQ management systems is as follows:

Certification of HSEQ management systems according to external standards (in percent)1












In percent of business activities based, on energy consumption

Certified according to various quality management standards such as ISO 9001





ISO 14001 certified/EMAS validated (environment)





OHSAS 18001 certified (occupational safety)





ISO 50001 certified (energy)





HSEQ/health, safety, environment, quality
Health, safety, environment and quality
HSEQ/health, safety, environment, quality
Health, safety, environment and quality