Annual Report 2023

Integrated Management System for Health, Safety, Environment, Energy, and Quality

Covestro’s stated aims are to take preventive measures to protect employees, suppliers, service providers, working communities, and residential neighborhoods surrounding our sites; to ensure uninterrupted operations; and to continually improve quality. This responsibility has been assigned to the head of the corporate Group Health, Safety and Environment (HSE) function, who reports to the CTO. The integrated system implemented throughout the Group ensures that the requirements of the health, safety, environment, energy, and quality (HSEQ) directives are carried out. It is based on internationally recognized standards governing occupational health and safety management systems (ISO 45001), environmental management systems (ISO 14001), energy management systems (ISO 50001), and quality management systems (ISO 9001).

Adherence to processes and workflows is continuously reviewed through regularly conducted 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 continuous monitoring and is updated as required.

Our existing HSEQ management system corresponds to the requirements of the current ISO 9001:2015, ISO 14001:2015, and ISO 45001:2018 standards. In fiscal 2023, based on these 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.

The acquisition in the year 2021 of the Resins & Functional Materials (RFM) business from Koninklijke DSM N.V., Heerlen (Netherlands), resulted in new sites being added to the Covestro Group. Covestro’s regulations will be applied to the new sites gradually, since different HSEQ guidelines and standards have applied to some of these locations in the past. This process will still take some time and will run for a number of years in specific cases.

The corporate Group HSE function is responsible for the integrated HSEQ management system, which comprises the following three elements: health and safety, environment and energy, and quality.

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 ISO 45001 comprise the minimum requirements applicable worldwide and are supplemented with additional regulations if needed. They are intended to prevent work-related health impacts and accidents and incidents at the workplace or on transportation routes that could have adverse consequences for people or the environment. In addition, we offer support to our customers, for example by providing training on the safe handling of our products in and outside of our facilities. We increasingly rely on the support of third-party databases to help us identify, review, and update our compliance with mandatory legal and other requirements.

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 systems) and ISO 50001 (energy management systems). 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 reporting year the energy efficiency system at the major German production sites introduced in the 2008 fiscal year was reviewed and audited by an independent certification body, and its certification to ISO 50001 upheld.


We have very high expectations of the raw material quality we use, and we set ourselves high standards for their processing into high-performance plastics and polyurethane precursors. Within the framework of our integrated HSEQ management system, our quality management activities meet the requirements of the current ISO 9001:2015 standard. Thanks to our quality management system, we can put in place the conditions necessary for incorporating our customers’ requirements and their satisfaction into our products and services.

Audits and Certifications

Our binding Group regulations that serve to achieve HSEQ goals are available to all employees in the Group’s in-house databases and are reviewed annually using internal audits and external certification companies. This may require the management system to be adjusted. Our business activities are covered by certified HSEQ management systems to the degree outlined below:

Certification of HSEQ management systems according to external standards1













in %


in %

Certified according to various quality management standards such as ISO 9001





ISO 14001 certified/EMAS validated (environment)





ISO 45001 (formerly OHSAS 18001) certified (occupational safety)





ISO 50001 certified (energy)






In % of business activity, measured according to energy usage.

HSEQ/Health, Safety, Environment, Energy, and Quality
A commonly used abbreviation for health, safety, environment, energy, and quality.

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