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Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) Management

Our operating practices safeguard our people and protect the environment.

Driven to achieve a zero injury and incident culture and meet our environmental goals, we integrate sound environmental, health and safety (EHS) practices into our everyday activities with stakeholders. Our approach includes:

  • Complying with or exceeding requirements of global, national, state and local statutes, regulations and standards that protect the environment, human health and safety. In all cases — regardless of whether applicable laws and regulations exist — we apply sound EHS management practices that continue to drive our strong compliance record
  • Conducting regular internal and third-party audits to verify compliance with EHS regulatory requirements and company standards
  • Monitoring and understanding emerging issues, regulatory changes and technological innovations

Some refrigerants used in our products are considered ozone-depleting substances and may have higher global warming potential. Our operating and handling practices minimize refrigerant leaks and avoid environmental and safety impacts. 

Our EHS data is assured annually by a third party.

Our EHS Policy

Signed by our chairman and CEO, our EHS Policy is a promise to our people, customers, partners, shareholders and communities that we will strive for sustainability excellence and remain committed to operating safely and protecting the environment.

The policy is overseen by our senior vice president of supply chain and operations, who is the executive sponsor of EHS programs across our operations. Our EHS Council of corporate and business leaders meets regularly to develop or enhance our EHS management standards. Executive and facility-level leadership teams are responsible for tracking and monitoring performance, which we measure through key performance indicators such as injury rates and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

Environment and Climate Change

We’re innovators in sustainability, and that starts with our operations. Our EHS policy helps us focus on how we are going to minimize the environmental footprint of our operations, our product distribution and logistics. This includes executing sound pollution prevention programs targeted at waste, energy and water conservation, reducing non-renewable natural resources, increasing the reuse and recycling of materials and reducing GHG and other environmentally harmful emissions.

We focus on performance monitoring and improvement in the following areas:

  • Pollution prevention, environmental management and integrated permitting
  • GHG and air emissions management, including NOx and SOx emissions, which primarily result from our fleet, and refrigerant emissions, which are an essential component of many of our products
  • Water supply management, including a water quality management system
  • Wastewater discharge management
  • Waste management

Read more about our approach to climate change and how we are managing GHG emissions, pollutant emissions and refrigerants, energy, water and waste.

Safety

We work hard to keep our employees safe and are always trying to do better. We annually train the majority of employees at our manufacturing sites and other large locations, in addition to those who complete service work at third-party locations, on sound EHS practices.

The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulation 29 CFR 1904 is our basis for recording and reporting accidents at our sites around the world. And our sites are expected to comply with local regulations when they are stricter than the U.S. OSHA standard.

We focus on performance monitoring and improvement in the following areas:

  • General safety and health management
  • Personal protective equipment
  • Hazardous substance management
  • Dangerous substances
  • Physical hazards
  • Mechanical hazards
  • Fire protection

Global health issues are addressed through multiple mechanisms, including high-risk travel destinations, global crisis emergency planning, practices for emergency medical responders and company health programs, among others. We have also planned additional awareness training for service employees who perform work in medical health care facilities.

For all operations that retain purchased service contractors, we provide Standard Work that requires the approval of contractors, including a review of the company’s safety performance and determination that they have the necessary training for services performed. We also provide appropriate on-site EHS orientation training to each contractor before any work begins.

Read more about our approach to occupational health and safety and how we manage product safety and reliability.  

Audits and Due Diligence

Big ideas mean nothing if you don’t make them happen. One way we make sure that our operations are sustainable is through audits and due diligence.

Key facilities conduct annual EHS self-assessments according to a standard company-wide protocol. These assessments identify opportunities that will improve EHS performance and continue to lead on sustainability.

Through a combination of third-party consultants and internal EHS staff, we audit each of our sites on a frequency that depends on the site’s complexity — the size, staffing and nature of manufacturing operation, as well as the scale of requirements and actionable duties within EHS permits, licenses and regulations.

During acquisitions, we complete formal due diligence that includes EHS. Change management programs are implemented for all operations we acquire, new operations that we open, and newly introduced or redesigned products. We also perform risk assessments at multiple levels, including pre-task, pre-project, within change management and when evaluating overall enterprise risks.

We do not subscribe to Article 15 of the Rio Principles and do not address the precautionary approach and principle. Our company did not receive any significant fines for noncompliance in 2019. Read more about our EHS Policy.