Samsung Electronics' Device Solutions Division is planning to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 37% by 2030 compared to BAU (Business As Usual) through the application of BAT (Best Available Technology) to its new lines.
To achieve this goal, Device Solutions is utilizing highly efficient facilities and technologies in the purchasing and engineering stages to reduce energy consumption and continuously expand the industry's first large-capacity treatment facilities to lower PFC emissions.
As a result of these efforts, the Device Solutions lowered GHG intensity in 2015 by 32% compared to 2005 levels (excluding NF3).
Including NF3, the accumulated reduction from 2005 to 2015 equals 6.83 million tons, equivalent to the effect of planting 2.4 billion trees.
Samsung Electronics' Device Solutions Division reduced PFC emissions by 10% in 2010 compared to 1997, according to the voluntary PFC reduction agreement of the WSC (World Semiconductor Council). Device Solutions is continuing its work to reduce PFC emissions until 2020 by applying the BAT (Best Available Technology) to new production lines. Even though PFC emissions are inevitable due to the constant growth of the semiconductor industry and production, approximately 1.8 million tons of CO2 emissions were eliminated in 2015, by reducing PFC emissions through the gradual application of various PFC reduction technologies.
Samsung Electronics' Device Solutions Division is saving energy at an annual average of 4% a year (cumulatively equivalent to 1.30 million tons of CO2) by implementing BAT and applying energy reduction technologies to the purchasing and engineering stages.
Our efforts to minimize the environmental impact of emissions from semiconductor manufacturing don't end with complying with regulations set forth by the local governments in which we operate. For example, in the Republic of Korea, the DS Division operates pollution prevention facilities to mitigate the impact of air pollutants and processing facilities to minimize emissions. Through these efforts, we have reduced the emission of pollutants by 81% compared to 2001.
To efficiently operate air pollution prevention facilities and to immediately resolve problems, we measure air pollutant levels emitted from our plants by using smokestack automatic measuring devices in real time. We strictly control pollutant emission density at less than 30% of the acceptable limit and transfer measurement data to administrative agencies in real time.
In an effort to minimize the environmental impact on streams into which waste water is discharged, and to protect aquatic ecosystems, Samsung Electronics' Device Solutions Division minimizes its emission of water pollutants, adheres to an in-house pollutant standard that is stricter than legal requirements (30% lower than the law stipulates) and operates TMS (Tele Monitoring System) to monitor the concentration levels of pollutants around the clock.
To promote a green enterprise and preserve the environment, the Device Solutions Division of Samsung Electronics has also constructed its first enterprise ecological toxicity monitoring system to measure and monitor the ecological toxicity of final effluents from its plants.
From 2011 to 2014, Samsung Electronics' Device Solutions Division reduced water pollutant discharge intensity by 23% compared to 2011. To alleviate the increase in water pollutant emissions caused by line expansions at the Hwaseong facility, a specialized total nitrogen treatment facility (N-Free) was established in 2008 and a new waste water treatment facility was constructed in 2012. As a result, this two-tier treatment system and waste water reuse system was introduced, and an acid/alkali wastewater system has reduced the total discharge of water pollutants by lowering the final treated concentration of water pollutants.
In an effort to protect water resources, approximately 23% of the industrial water is recycled. In 2014, a wastewater Reclamation and Reuse System was implemented to maximize the use of water resources.
The temperature of discharged water is strictly managed to meet legal requirements. In addition, a water cooling facility was constructed to minimize the impact on the ecosystem, where it can be otherwise impacted by a steady influx of discharged waste water at a constant temperature.
The water cooling facility lowers water temperature through heat exchange with cold water that requires a heat source. Its benefits include energy savings for water heating.
To ensure a safe, environment-friendly workplace, Samsung designates 2,667 chemical substances that can potentially cause health problems, based on domestic and overseas regulations and agreements. Before introducing any new chemical substance, the company conducts an environment safety pre-assessment by reviewing the physical and chemical characteristics, health hazards, risks, and safety levels of the substance. Then, it assesses the probability of exposure to the substance and establishes necessary safety precautions. The health and environmental impact of chemical substances is reviewed during each production process: introduction, storage, use, treatment, and disposal or recycling.
Thanks to continuous efforts to recycle waste from the manufacturing process, Samsung currently recycles 96% of all generated waste, including recovered energy. We recycle waste wafers for high purity silicon used in solar cells, waste synthetic resins as a source of plastic, and sludge as a source of cement. We also collect usable parts from obsolete equipments, and our employees have an access to those parts for reusage via Parts Recycling Center. The company will continue to recycle more items in keeping with the corporate principle of 'Waste is a potential resource.'
3Rs (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle), Environment-friendly Waste Management Strategies
4Rs (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Refrain)
Device Solutions is committed to reducing water consumption, and recycling and reusing water. It has formed a water consumption reduction TFT, analyzed water-consuming facilities, increased the efficiency of water usage, and introduced a tailored water-recycling system. It specially treats water at the wastewater treatment facility and recycles it into ultra-pure water for high-precision manufacturing processes. As a result, water consumption has been reduced by hundreds of tons every year. Our semiconductor operations have recycled 20% of water in 2015. The efficient water usage and conservation has contributed to cost savings.
Water intake intensity has increased recently due to expanded product integration and non-memory product output. However, we plan to improve water intake efficiency per unit wafer by increasing the water recycling rate and through water conservation efforts.
On-site clinics offer various medical services for internal medicine, dermatology, dental services, and Oriental medicine. In addition, the first-aid team is ready 24/7 for emergency care and transportation of patients to hospitals, if needed. These clinics:
Regular medical checkups are offered to detect disease symptoms early, prevent diseases, and improve employee health and that of their spouses:
Samsung's Device Solutions has an infectious disease prevention system to manage the spread of such diseases in workplaces through monitoring, quarantine and disinfection. We also monitor outbreaks of any contagious diseases in countries that employees may visit or transfer through, and prohibit business trips to countries that present an unacceptable risk.
We provide personal emergency cards containing vital informaztion, such as blood type, emergency contacts, safety instructions, and health instructions for employees on overseas business trips to ensure that they stay healthy and receive help in the event of an emergency.
Employees returning from overseas business trips receive health check-ups before they go back to the workplace, thus preventing the spread of any infectious disease.
As part of the initiative to improve employee health, we also carry out ergonomic risk assessments that help prevent muscle and bone diseases by identifying potential problems in production lines and workplaces.
Multiple number of prevention centers for musculoskeletal disorders are available to our employees within the facility of our company.
SHRI was established in April 2010, the first research organization of its kind in the industry, to inform continuous improvements to health and safety in the semiconductor workplace. Semiconductor fabrication is a complicated, technical process and improving safety throughout all the steps requires ongoing scientific study. Therefore we continuously conduct research to improve employee health and safety measures in the semiconductor workplace.
Topics include toxicology of potentially hazardous materials, study of work environment and occupational epidemiology. SHRI has worked on about 20 research projects per year since its launch in 2010.
The Business Continuity Plan (BCP) is a company-wide emergency plan based on existing emergency systems and recovery plans. The BCP includes human and physical prevention programs and an organization for immediate recovery during emergencies, such as fires, explosions, electrical failures, interruption of public utilities, natural disasters, and environmental accidents.
Samsung operates BCPs to prevent accidents and minimize potential damage during emergencies by immediately recovering and restarting systems. Guidelines for handling an emergency situation, such as providing intimation and information of the situation, minimizing damage, and performing recovery actions, exist for 103 emergency situations. In adherence to these guidelines, all employees are trained to deal with emergencies.
Samsung's semiconductor operations have firefighter teams at the Giheung and Hwaseong complexes for first response in emergencies. The teams are equipped with aerial ladder trucks, chemical fire trucks, multi-purpose rescue vehicles, ambulances, emergency waste-liquid recovery vehicles, and other firefighting vehicles and life-saving equipment. The firefighter teams:
To ensure equipment safety, we check environment safety issues at every stage from ordering, delivery, and installation of the equipment before use. With these safety checks, equipment-related accidents can be prevented.
At the ordering stage, Device Solutions mandates equipment suppliers to comply with common specifications for environmentally safe purchases, including environment safety risk assessments by an authorized 3rd party to ensure equipment safety. With the process in place, we check standard compliance of our suppliers as early as the equipment development stage through delivery, and suppliers can strictly adhere to the safety standards.
When the equipment is delivered, we check if the it meets our standards.
At the equipment installation stage, experts from each functional area check the safety of additional utilities required to run the equipment, such as electricity, thus eliminating factors that can cause malfunctions later.
Despite every effort to maintain an accident-free workplace, a Samsung Electronics chip plant in Hwaseong experienced a hydrofluoric acid leak at the beginning of 2013. Investigations are ongoing to determine the exact cause of the accident, and the company pledges to take preventative measures that will avoid the recurrence of such an accident and enhance its communication channel with local communities.
Cause of the Accident and Investigations
Present investigations have determined that the hydrofluoric acid leak was most likely due to faulty valve gaskets on the hydrofluoric acid storage tank. Official investigations by the authorities, the Ministry of Labor and Employment, and the Ministry of Environment have not yet been concluded. The company will readily evaluate these third-party results and take all necessary measures to reinforce the facility's systems. According to results from the National Institute of Environmental Research, which has thoroughly analyzed the air in and around the Hwaseong plant, hydrofluoric acid did not spread outside the plant premises. Samsung Electronics plans to enhance the precautions in its plants in keeping with the commitment to both workplace and environmental safety.
Samsung Electronics has reinforced its organizational capacity in the fields of environmental protection and safety promotion. In March 2013, Samsung Electronics set up a new environmental organization that convenes company safety experts from both Giheung and Hwaseong. The new organization, headed by leadership at the executive level, has appointed experts in semiconductor manufacturing and production to manage the two locations. This new leadership will work to ensure that the plants are exemplary workplaces in terms of environmental safety.
2. Reassessment of Standards and Procedures
Samsung Electronics has completed the reassessment of its internal standards and procedures for engineering, construction, and maintenance at its production facilities to ensure compliance with global standards.
The company has launched training programs on the control of hazardous substances that are mandatory for every applicable employee. Samsung has also established an internal certification system and trains specialists to carry out long-term systematic improvements in this area. In addition, it will reorganize its collaboration with public agencies in emergency cases and perform regular disaster drills with these agencies.
3. Enhanced Inspections
Samsung Electronics has bolstered its internal inspection processes, placing heavy emphasis on areas of past accidents such as piping. The company has set up a special organization charged with piping inspections in the first half of 2013. In addition, Samsung undergoes government agency conducted regular and unannounced audits of company facilities to inspect for proper workplace maintenance. The company has also intensified its 24-hour monitoring of gas and chemical leaks at both Giheung and Hwaseong worksites, as well as its offsite control center.
4. Strengthened Communication
Together with local communities, Samsung has formed a council composed of ten community representatives and company officials to serve as a channel of constant communication on a variety of mutually relevant issues. The company has realigned its emergency contact network to include members within the community, the local government, and emergency response services.
At Samsung, we are fostering co-prosperity by raising the level of our partner's‘ environmental safety through TSIP (Total Safety Improvement Program).
Primary activities include safety awareness communications with resident partners, support establishing voluntary safety management systems, and professional training for environmental safety personnel. Samsung also provides environmental safety consulting and support measures for third-party partners.
Create a culture of harmony by helping our partners to elevate their safety standards via TSIP [Total Safety Improvement Program]
Every year, Samsung provides technical support sessions for partners to strengthen environmental safety measures and hosts awareness programs with the participation of partner CEOs and stakeholders.
A quarterly health & safety council meeting for partner CEOs provide an opportunity for active discussions and cooperation in creating a safe workplace.
At Samsung, we are promoting support activities (consulting) to establish the voluntary safety management system
for non-certified companies every year in order to reach 100% in establishing autonmous safety management system for our partners.
In order to foster greater business stability, Samsung is providing overseas subsidiaries, affiliated companies and 3rd-party partners with comprehensive environmental safety consulting at least once a year. The consultations will help the entities improve legal compliance and minimize hazards overseas. Samsung provided consultations to 122 companies in 2015. A additional 144 companies are scheduled to receive the service over the course of 2016.
Samsung is promoting tiered training sessions to improve environmental safety awareness of employees of partner companies.
Primary training include :