Air Emissions -
We report global NOx, SO2 and VOC emissions. SO2 and NOx emissions come principally from transportation activity and miles driven to deliver product. We continue to improve our logistics efficiency to reduce these emissions through various fuel efficiency measures and improved vehicle fuel combustion.
56% percent of NOx emissions come from product transportation in trucks. Another 42% comes from hydrogen facilities and Air Separation Units (ASUs). As hydrogen production increases and new ASUs come on-line, operations will make a larger proportional contribution to the total NOx emissions. See the chart below for emissions per year.
|YEAR||NOX EMISSIONS IN METRIC TONS|
In 2010, Praxair set a target to reduce NOx emissions from driving by 20% by 2015. In 2011, NOx emission from driving were reported at 975 metric tons — an 18.9% reduction that would get us very close to our 2015 target well ahead of schedule.
SULFUR DIOXIDE (SO2)
Since 2004, we have experienced a 58% overall decrease in SO2 emissions, however the 2011 emissions increased 25% over 2009 results. For the most part, these reductions result from less miles driven but fluctuate significantly by year and region because of varying environmental regulations around the world. Total SO2 emissions are reported below.
|YEAR||SO2 EMISSIONS IN METRIC TONS|
VOLATILE ORGANIC COMPOUNDS (VOCS)
64% of VOC emissions at Praxair come from acetylene production and flammable gas cylinder filling and 10% comes from Praxair driver emissions. In 2011, our VOC emissions totaled 519.7 metric tons, a 9% reduction from 2009 and a 1% reduction from 2010. See our yearly VOC emissions reported below.
|YEAR||DIRECT VOC EMISSIONS IN METRIC TONS|
OZONE DEPLETING SUBSTANCES (ODS)
We measure the quantity of ozone-depleting substances (ODSs) contained in our equipment as well as any emissions to the atmosphere. We are aggressively pursuing opportunities to reduce the use and emission of ODSs through the use of alternative non-ODS substances, enhanced leak detection and repair programs for equipment that still use ODSs.
Energy Use -
We are vigilant about managing our own energy footprint and have a number of initiatives to reduce operational energy use. We have developed a new energy efficiency target designed to show the link between sound cost and energy management. And in 2011 alone, we achieved energy savings of 300,000 MWh, the equivalent to more than 150,000 metric tons of greenhouse gas.
Our use of purchased steam represents less than 0.1% of Praxair’s electrical energy used. To convert steam to MWhs, we used the American Chemistry Council’s conversion factor of 1,200 btu/1b of steam and 10,000 BTU/KWH. See the chart below.
|YEAR||GLOBAL THERMAL ENERGY PURCHASED IN MWH|
We track and report energy use at facilities where we take direct responsibility for electrical and other energy costs, and at onsite facilities where we operate but our customers pay the utility costs.
|YEAR||GLOBAL ELECTRICITY PURCHASED IN MILLIONS OF MWH|
Waste & Recycling Management -
We track waste by type, hazardous or non-hazardous, and by disposal method — landfills, recycling and “other” methods such as incineration. Total hazardous and non-hazardous waste disposed of in 2011 was 53,135 metric tons (MT) worldwide — 22% less than in 2010 and 9% less than 2009. This reduction from 2010 is primarily a result of a significant decrease in carbide lime disposal.
We recycled 76% of all waste generated in 2011. 17% went to landfill while 7% was reported as “other.” 26% of our waste was solid/special waste and non-hazardous waste. And carbide lime and scrap metals and powders contributed to 80% of our worldwide waste by weight. Carbide lime, which is usually considered a non-hazardous waste or a co-product is designated a hazardous waste in some countries due to its high pH. We are currently working to minimize this waste with source reduction. Take a look at our reported waste by year.
|YEAR||WORLDWIDE WASTE DISPOSED OF IN METRIC TONS|
Water Use -
We report water use for approximately 380 sites where our monthly use exceeds 10,000 gallons. Water is reported as total volume used across several categories. Approximately 21% of the water we use is supplied by municipalities or other water utilities, while the remaining 79% is provided by our customers or procured from surface and well waters, or other industrial sources.
In 2011, Praxair’s global water use was 46.4 million cubic meters, 14% higher than in 2010. The largest single factor for this increase was higher production due to growing global customer demand and a number of new plants brought on-line. See our water consumption per year below.
|YEAR||WATER CONSUMPTION IN MILLION CUBIC METERS|
These numbers do not include once-through, non-contact cooling water, where water is drawn from and returned to the same body of water without the addition of chemicals or contaminants.