ABI Research’s Global Industrial & Manufacturing Sustainability Assessment

June 2023 News

A new competitive ranking by global technology intelligence firm ABI Research provides an in-depth and unbiased examination of a representative set of 10 of the world’s largest industrial manufacturing conglomerates that are leading the way toward sustainable manufacturing operations. These companies were evaluated and ranked based on their sustainability efforts across six categories: renewable energy use; material sourcing and eco-design; technology use and eco-efficiency; waste reduction and circularity; green buildings and vehicles; and reporting and governance. Within those categories, ABI Research further identified 30 action items to score each company in the index for specifically reducing carbon emissions, water use, and waste across the industrial sector.

This assessment establishes the sustainability positioning of each profiled company − leaders, mainstream, and followers − and provides strategic recommendations for improvement.

Sustainability Leaders: Schneider Electric, Siemens, ABB and Bosch

Sustainability Mainstream: Hitachi, General Electric, Honeywell and LG

Sustainability Followers: Mitsubishi Corporation and Rockwell Automation.

Kim Johnson, Sustainable Technologies principal analyst, explains: “Our assessment identified Schneider Electric, Siemens, ABB, and Bosch as the top four sustainability leaders. Schneider Electric integrates sustainability and energy management expertise into all its offerings, targeting carbon neutrality within its own operations by 2025, and 90% renewable energy use, 50% green material in its products, and 80% of revenue tied to its Green Premium standard by 2025.

Siemens ranked second, leading the index in industrial digital automation, and green buildings and vehicles, while receiving solid scores for renewable energy use, reporting, and governance. Siemens targets carbon neutrality by 2030. ABB was a leading technology implementer for industrial automation and robotics. The group has set a target to reduce its customers’ emissions by at least 100 megatons by 2030, equal to the annual emissions of around 30 million combustion vehicles, with carbon neutrality by 2030. Bosch achieved carbon neutrality for Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions in 2020, and led the index in global renewable energy use.

There are substantial differences in the value chain carbon emissions of companies like Mitsubishi producing heavy equipment, General Electric and Honeywell manufacturing aircraft engines and aerospace equipment, Hitachi making construction machinery and transportation infrastructure, and Bosch manufacturing automotive parts and chips, versus other companies with a higher percentage of digital automation solutions, software tools, and services. Some industrial companies in the index are still evaluating the full scale of their upstream and downstream Scope 3 emissions. “Thus, the sustainability index is not a tool to directly compare the carbon footprints of the products and offerings of the conglomerate companies. Rather, the research intends to discern several ambitious corporate sustainability programmes and best practices to better understand what industrial sector leaders are doing to achieve their climate goals and reduce their environmental impact,” Johnson concludes.

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