LG Electronics (LG) announced the publication of its 2022-2023 Sustainability Report, officially disclosing its achievements and strategy for each area of the six strategic tasks, which have been carefully designed to realize its Better Life for All ESG vision, to customers and stakeholders around the world.
The company is focusing on two major areas: ‘3Cs’ for the planet, which are carbon neutrality, circularity and clean technology, and ‘3Ds’ for people, which are design for all, a decent workplace and diversity & inclusion.
3Cs for the Planet: Carbon Neutrality, Circularity and Clean Technology
This year, LG’s global sites recorded a total global emissions of direct (scope 1) and indirect (scope 2) greenhouse gases (GHG) of 92.7 million tons,* a 22 million ton decrease from the previous year – a reduction that supports its pledge to achieve net-zero (direct and indirect) by 2030.
The company also recorded a renewable energy conversion rate of 8.2 percent. This comes after it committed to only using renewable energy at its global business sites by 2050 and successfully joined RE100 (Renewable Energy 100), an initiative advocating for businesses to convert to 100 percent renewable energy.
The company is also accelerating carbon reduction in the product use stage by expanding the application of highly efficient eco-friendly technologies. Approximately 80 percent of LG’s total carbon emissions come from the product use stage, and includes indirect emissions (scope 3) that are generated outside the company’s operational facilities. Last year, the functional unit carbon emissions of seven major products, which accounts for about 80 percent of the carbon emissions generated during the product use stage, decreased by 13.1 percent compared to 2020. Functional unit carbon emission refers to the value obtained by dividing the amount of GHG emitted during the average period of product use by the functional unit of the product. For example, a refrigerator’s GHG emissions are expressed per liter while a washing machine’s GHG emissions are conveyed per kilogram. In addition, in 2021, LG became the first South Korean appliance manufacturer to have its GHG emissions reduction target at the product use stage (scope 3) validated by Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi).
To establish a circular ecosystem, the company recovered a total of 472,876 tons of electronic waste from 52 countries last year. Since 2006, LG has recovered a cumulative total of recovered electronic waste that amounts to 3,992,768 tons. As of 2022, the number of recycled plastics used in the company’s products reached 32,987 tons, 25 percent higher than 2021 figures. What’s more, the company’s South Korean business sites recently received Zero Waste to Landfill (ZWTL) verification.
3Ds for People: Design for All, Decent Workplace and Diversity & Inclusion
LG has also been prioritizing accessibility by integrating voice recognition and voice guidance features into its major products and distributing braille stickers that attach to every LG home appliance. The company also plans to expand the universal design concept – products designed in a way that makes them easy to use by everyone – to all products going forward.
Last year, the company surveyed its major Tier 1 suppliers about their energy usage and carbon emissions, and then verified this data through a third party. Since this year, LG has been raising awareness among the executives and employees of its partners through a carbon neutrality education program. A total of 152 suppliers have participated in the program as of the first half of this year.
In addition, in accordance with international Responsible Business Alliance (RBA) standards, the company is also providing support through third-party ESG certification reviews to preemptively respond to ESG risks of suppliers in areas such as labor, environment, ethics as well as health and safety. Beginning this year, the scope has been expanded to include partners based not only in Korea but around the world.
Expanding Role of ESG Committee
LG continues to expand the role of the ESG Committee which reports to its board of directors to internalize ESG management. The committee, made up of 4 independent directors and 1 executive CEO, is overseen by chairman Seo Seung-woo, an independent director who was appointed to the role earlier this year.
Last year, to ensure transparency in the management and governance of the board of directors and governance structure, the ESG Committee established guidelines for the independence, diversity and expertise of independent directors as well as the corporate governance charter.
Since 2006, the company has published its sustainability report every year. Starting last year, alongside the LG ESG Fact Book which outlines its ESG management goals, activities and performance, the company has published the ESG Story Book which helps customers and stakeholders understand LG’s ESG activities in a more engaging story format.