Friday, December 9, 2022

15 Years of ESG Efforts Put LG On the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index

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LG Electronics has been added to the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index, following more than 15 years of increased sustainability efforts.

The Dow Jones Sustainability Index includes global leaders identified by S&P Global’s Corporate Sustainability Assessment. It represents the top ten percent of the largest 2,500 companies in the S&P Global BMI. Leading electronics and appliance manufacturer LG is now on the Index following an uptick in efforts and meeting emissions reductions goals ahead of target.

“LG truly envisions a better life for all. A key way to achieve that on Earth Day and every day is corporate management focused on protecting the environment and serving society as a whole,” Thomas Yoon, president and CEO, LG Electronics North America, said in a statement. “Being recognized with these top distinctions is a testament to the progress along our ESG (environmental, social and governance) journey.”

Sustainability at LG

The listing comes after LG committed to being fully powered by renewable energy by 2050. In 2019, the electronics and appliances giant announced the goal of reducing carbon emissions by 50 percent by 2020 compared to 2017 numbers—a target which it met early in mid-2019.

The Seoul, South Korea-based LG says it has reduced the environmental impact of its products from design and production to packaging and transportation to their use and disposal all while cutting greenhouse gas emissions from LG operations worldwide.

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Earlier this year, LG earned recognition by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency with the Sustainable Materials Management Gold Tier Award, Product Champion Award, and Emerging Technology Award. The company says the awards came as it recycled more than 50 million pounds of e-waste in the last year. Other efforts were recognized, too, including ensuring lifecycle sustainability for its sound bars to developing advanced adaptive compressors for its refrigerators.

“Electronics are a global economic driver with supply chains that reach around the world and products that play a big role in our daily lives.” EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan said in a statement, applauding the company’s efforts “to recover and recycle valuable resources like precious metals, critical minerals, plastics and glass. It’s going to take all of us working together to build a sustainable future.”

Last November, the company was named an Eco-Leader by Green Builder Media for its decarbonization efforts for the third year in a row.

“At LG, we believe we have a shared responsibility to create a sustainable tomorrow,” said LG Electronics North America President and CEO Thomas Yoon. “We are honored to once again be acknowledged with the Eco-Leader title for our continued efforts to reduce carbon emissions and take climate action through our business practices and the innovation of energy efficient technologies across all of our product categories.”

Green Builder Media CEO Sara Gutterman commended LG for “accepting the responsibility of making the planet a better place and creating positive change in the world.”

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“It’s essential that we shift to a decarbonized economy as quickly as possible, and companies like LG are playing a pivotal role in that transition,” she said.

LG is also an eight-time Energy Star Partner of the Year. It has pledged to continue its sustainability efforts with energy efficiency upgrades, conservation efforts, and using more than 80 percent renewable energy across operations. It’s also transitioning to non-HFC refrigerants and reducing hazardous substances where possible.

The Corporate Knights also added LG to its list of 100 most sustainable corporations in the world. That list ranks companies by a continued correlation between higher investor returns and strong performance on key environmental, social, and governance metrics.

LG enters the EV market

In its 2021 sustainability report, CEO and President of LG Electronics, Brian Kwon, said the company will deliver sustainability results based on “the fundamental competitive edge of our company, not temporary advantages created by external factors.”

According to Kwon, that means more than just reducing LG’s environmental footprint; it means “expanding inclusive social values to more members of society.” In addition, Kwon says LG will work toward building “a rational and transparent ESG decision-making model in order to establish a culture of ESG management at LG.”

LG is also aiming to nab a segment of the booming electric vehicle market. In 2021, it announced a joint venture with Canadian auto parts maker Magna International, which bought a 49 percent stake in the company’s automotive powertrain business for more than $450 million.

recycling ev batteries
Courtesy Tesla

“Our aim is to be one of the industry’s leading suppliers of automotive components and solutions,” Kwon told reporters.

“With the joint venture, we are well positioned to achieve this goal within the areas of electric and connected vehicles. The market for electric and clean-energy vehicles is projected to grow exponentially,” Kwon said.

The effort will see LG’s expertise in electrical components married with Magna’s expertise in automotive systems. The ability to mass-produce e-motors and inverters is expected to help shrink production costs for the global EV market.


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