Waste Management

The proper management of waste from our facilities is important for the communities where we operate and is the focus of our environmental permits and other regulatory requirements.

To minimize our environmental footprint, we look for opportunities to avoid the use of hazardous materials, to reuse or recycle materials, and to prevent the generation of waste. When prevention, reuse and recycling are not practical, we apply controls and treatment technologies to prevent human health impacts and minimize environmental impacts.

The amount of waste we generate reflects the efficiency of our manufacturing processes. Our facilities track and report the amount of operational waste they generate and how it is managed.

We continuously strive to reduce the amount of operational waste we generate and to maximize the use of environmentally beneficial disposal methods such as recycling, composting and waste-to-energy.

By 2025, no more than 20% of our global operational waste will be sent to landfills and incinerators.33% to landfills and incinerators
On Track
By 2025, at least 50% of sites will send zero waste to landfill.38% of sites
On Track


Waste minimization begins with the upfront evaluation of our product designs and manufacturing processes. Through our Green and Sustainable Science program, we design processes that use safer chemicals, consume less energy, use less water and other resources and generate less waste. Our process-development biologists, chemists and engineers have the expertise to create more sustainable ways to make our products.

To ensure our waste is managed in an environmentally responsible manner, we use only approved waste disposal facilities. Approved facilities demonstrate that they have the systems, technologies and practices to manage our waste streams responsibly and in compliance with all applicable requirements. We routinely audit these facilities to verify the acceptability of their systems and practices.

Waste types are defined differently in various parts of the world. For this report, we have divided our operational waste into two categories:

Hazardous waste: Heavily regulated or high-risk waste streams that need to be neutralized, treated or destroyed to address a particular hazard such as toxicity, flammability, corrosivity, radioactivity, pharmaceutically active or infectious.

Non-hazardous waste: All other operational waste. Because the amount of project-related waste can vary significantly from year to year based on the number and size of projects, our definition of operational waste does not include construction or demolition waste from projects.


In 2018, we managed approximately 73,930 metric tons of waste from our operations, a 2 percent increase from 2017. Of this, 38,413 metric tons were hazardous waste.

Of the hazardous waste we generated in 2018, 46 percent was beneficially reused in some way (reused, recycled, composted or sent for energy recovery). Approximately 18 percent of our hazardous waste was sent offsite for recycling and was either returned to us for reuse or sold to other industries. Another 27 percent was burned to generate power. Of the hazardous waste that could not be recycled or beneficially reused, 46 percent was incinerated. Approximately 2 percent was sent to hazardous-waste landfills. The amount of hazardous waste sent offsite for incineration rose from 2017 to 2018, mainly due to an increase in production at one of our manufacturing sites.

We beneficially reused 82 percent of the 35,517 metric tons of non-hazardous waste we generated in 2018. The amount of non-hazardous waste that was reused doubled from 2017 to 2018. We are evaluating and refining the programs in place at our manufacturing, research and office sites to reduce waste generation and increase recycling.

The percentage of operational waste sent to landfill and incinerators increased from 29 percent in 2017 to 33 percent in 2018. This is mainly due to an increase in production volumes at one of our manufacturing facilities that sends waste offsite for incineration. In 2018, 38 percent of our facilities sent zero operational waste to landfill, down from 42 percent in 2017. We are working to identify alternate methods of waste management that will reduce the amount of waste sent to incinerators and landfills.

GLOBAL OPERATIONAL WASTE2014 2015 2016 2017 2018
Landfill10% 15% 10% 10% 9%
Incineration (without energy recovery)14% 13% 20% 19% 24%
Total24% 28% 30% 29% 33%
2025 goal ≤20%
HAZARDOUS WASTE (MT)2014 2015 2016 2017 2018
Incinerated (without heat recovery)9,724 7,928 13,186 13,462 17,639
Landfilled1,628 1,652 1,492 745 731
Recycled12,196 5,944 6,135 7,979 6,827
Energy recovery15,773 11,089 9,871 9,538 10,300
Reused2,408 1,428 2,132 1,505 695
Composted4 5 5 0 0
Other2,387 2,299 2,425 2,423 2,221
Total44,120 30,345 35,246 35,652 38,413
NON-HAZARDOUS WASTE (MT)2014 2015 2016 2017 2018
Incinerated (without heat recovery)788 1,243 1,361 426 374
Landfilled6,349 8,459 5,826 6,633 5,684
Recycled16,952 15,811 14,636 15,188 12,975
Energy recovery10,405 9,706 10,342 8,576 9,273
Reused782 970 972 1,071 2,204
Composted4,094 3,018 3,771 4,668 4,798
Other242 304 445 212 209
Total39,612 39,511 37,353 36,774 35,517
HAZARDOUS + NON-HAZARDOUS WASTE (MT)2014 2015 2016 2017 2018
Landfill + incineration 18,489 19,282 21,865 21,265 24,428
Landfill7,977 10,111 7,318 7,378 6,415
Incineration10,512 9,171 14,547 13,887 18,013
Recycled, energy recovery, reused or composted62,614 47,971 47,864 48,525 47,072
Other2,629 2,603 2,870 2,635 2,430
Total83,732 69,856 72,599 72,426 73,930