ST is committed to reducing water use and ensuring high standards of effluent and wastewater treatment. We also identify and manage water-related risks and opportunities, including the impact on local communities.

 
Our Water management objectives

-  Improve water efficiency (saving and recycling)

-  Prevent pollution

-  Assess water stress of manufacturing sites

 
45%
of water
recycled or reused
in 2015

 

The semiconductor manufacturing process requires large quantities of water with a very high level of purity. Tackling the challenges of water scarcity and wastewater treatment has been a fundamental part of our strategy since 1994 and our overall water footprint has been reduced by more than 70% through continuous improvement programs undertaken at all our manufacturing sites.

Water management approach

Evaluation of water use patterns
Each manufacturing site conducts regular, detailed analyses of how every drop of water is used in the production processes, which enables us to identify and focus on the most water-consuming or polluting production phases. ST’s Corporate Environment team also conducts product Life-Cycle Assessments to calculate the virtual water content of our products throughout their whole life cycle. 
"3R” approach: Reduce, Recycle, Reuse
ST sites are designed to support the reduce, recycle and reuse approach. Based on each site’s own assessments, specific measures are taken to further reduce consumption and increase recycling rates, mainly through the upgrade of manufacturing equipment and processes.
Treatment of discharged water
Wastewater treatment plants are either located on site or developed in collaboration with local authorities. They are specifically designed to remove substances such as fluoride, which cannot easily be treated by municipal plants.

Risks and impacts assessments

Water scarcity assessment
We use the international Water Stress Index (WSI) to assess the potential impact of our operations. Seven out of twelve manufacturing sites are located in partially or fully water-stressed areas. Our sites’ local water constraints are addressed in our mid and long-term development plans.
Water risk in the supply chain
In 2012, ST conducted a water risk assessment to identify the water footprint of our manufacturing sites and suppliers. Our methodology was based on: WBCSD Global Water Tool, GEMI Local Water Tool®, CERES Aqua Gauge, WWF Water Risk Filter, and WRI Aqueduct Project.
Collaborating with local communities
Our sites work closely with local stakeholders to reduce their water extraction and consumption, and to ensure a sustainable approach that takes into account the needs of a wide range of community stakeholders. This is documented in our manufacturing sites’ EMAS Environmental Statements, available on request from each site.

Our objectives and performance are available in our latest Sustainability report.

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