On June 30, Samsung Electronics released the 2022 edition of its Sustainability Report.
Outlining the performance of the company’s sustainability activities in 2021, this report includes major activities under its five sustainability pillars — Environment, Our Employees, Sustainable Supply Chain, Empowering Communities and Digital Responsibility. In particular, it highlights the following significant outcomes: stronger sustainability governance within the Board of Directors, expanded sustainability activities in the business units, joining the UN Global Compact and the placing of the Sustainability Council under the direct supervision of the CEO in 2022.
During 2021, Samsung Electronics put sustainability first while managing its business interests and significantly strengthened its sustainability governance to ensure this principle continues to be applied to all parts of its organization. To strengthen the Board of Directors’ supervision of sustainable activities in 2021, the Governance Committee, which had formerly been under the remit of the Board of Directors, was expanded to the Sustainability Committee in July 2021. The Sustainability Council, an executive-level consultative body, was placed under the leadership of the CEO earlier in 2022.
Samsung Electronics is making efforts to offer sustainable products to its customers. As part of these efforts, it has rolled out eco-conscious innovations including smartphones and monitors that incorporate materials recycled from discarded fishing nets and ocean-bound plastics and new, low-power semiconductors. It has also developed AI-based SmartThings Energy, a service that helps conserve energy by using a power saving mode that smart home appliances come equipped with, and SolarCell Remote Controls, which can be charged by sunlight or indoor lighting.
In addition, the company increased its renewable energy use by 31%, compared to 2020, by continuously expanding the use of renewable energy across its business premises worldwide. It also plans to achieve 100% renewable energy in its business premises in Latin America and Southwest Asia by 2025, a goal which has already been reached in the U.S., Europe and China.
The company is also expanding its cooperation with its stakeholders in relation to sustainability. In March 2022, the company joined the UN Global Compact, a specialized organization under the United Nations that was established in 2000 with the aim of promoting the sustainable growth of companies and society at large. It is also developing a washing machine that reduces the impact of microplastics in collaboration with Patagonia.
Finally, Samsung Electronics is carrying out numerous Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities that focus on education with the aim of fostering the technological capabilities of future generations, Creative Lab (C-Lab) projects that contribute to the vitality and diversity of the Korean startup ecosystem and the Future Technology Cultivation Initiative, which supports creative and innovative Research & Development (R&D) in the areas of basic science, novel materials and information and communications technology (ICT). One example of particular note is a team led by professors at POSTECH (Pohang University of Science and Technology) supported by the Future Technology Cultivation Initiative. The team’s achievements were published in Nature.
The full text of the 2022 Samsung Electronics Sustainability Report can be downloaded here.