2019 Annual Integrated Report

GRI Disclosures

Solvay bases its sustainability priorities on a materiality analysis. This approach identifies critical economic, environmental, and social aspects with potential to significantly impact Solvay’s performance and/or substantially influence stakeholders’ decisions. The analysis is performed and updated each year using the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) materiality approach.


Priority aspects


High materiality aspects


Moderate materiality aspects

Materiality analysis


Moderate materiality

High materiality


Ecological impacts

 Greenhouse gas emissions
Air quality
Water and wastewater
Waste and hazardous materials

Social capital

Access and affordability
Data security
Customer privacy
Selling practices and product labeling
Product quality and safety

Customer welfare
 Societal actions

Human capital

Compensation and benefits
Recruitment, development and retention

 Employee health and safety
Diversity and inclusion
 Employee engagement and well-being

Business model and innovation

Business model resilience
Product packaging
Supply chain management
Materials sourcing and efficiency
Physical impacts of climate change

 Sustainable business solutions

Leadership and governance

Systemic risk management
Regulatory capture and political influence

Critical incident risk management
Management of the legal, ethics and regulatory framework




Materiality analysis process

Solvay’s Sustainable Development and Energy Function coordinates the analysis with an internal network of the Solvay Way Champions in the Global Business Units and Functions. Experts in each Corporate Function have reviewed the analysis of each aspect, paying particular attention to consistency with the Group’s risk analysis.

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Materiality analysis process

Materiality analysis process (graphic)

Materiality analysis process

Indirectly taken into account through:

  • The exhaustive list of aspects of the SASB’s “Materiality Map™”;
  • The “evidence of interest criteria” which includes the analysis of documents published by each stakeholder Group.

Annual review led by the Sustainable Development and Energy function

A review takes place after the report has been published, and the organization is preparing for the next reporting cycle. The findings inform and contribute to the Identification Step for the next reporting cycle.

Review the analysis by the Executive Committee and the Global Business Units and Corporate Functions leaders, give special importance to ensuring consistency with the analysis of the Group’s main risks, and also to comparing it with the result of the analysis of the SASB for the chemical sector.

SASB’s Materiality Map™ is based on tests designed to prioritize aspects. To determine which sustainability topics were likely to be material to particular industries, SASB ran the following tests: evidence of interest, evidence of financial impact, forward looking adjustment.

The network of "the Solvay Way Champions" and internal experts for each highly material aspect were involved in the process.

Use of the SASB’s Materiality Map™

SASB’s Materiality Map™ identifies likely material sustainability aspects on an industry-by-industry basis.

Reporting on the 8 high materiality aspects and the 15 moderate materiality aspects.

2019 Updates

As in previous years, the vocabulary used for material aspects has been kept consistent with the SASB Materiality Map™, except in cases where the Group’s Executive Committee has decided to do otherwise during the validation step in order to broaden the scope of some material aspects.

This is the case for the following high materiality aspects:

  • “Societal actions” includes “Community relations” from the 2018 SASB Materiality Map™;
  • “Employee engagement and well-being” includes “Labor practices” and “Employee engagement” from the SASB Materiality Map™;
  • “Sustainable business solutions” includes “Product design and Lifecycle Management” from the SASB Materiality Map™;
  • “Management of the legal, ethics and regulatory framework” includes “Business ethics”, “Competitive behavior”, and “Human Rights” from the SASB Materiality Map™;
  • As last year, Solvay has kept “Compensation and benefits”, “Recruitment, development and retention”, and “Diversity and inclusion” as three aspects, mainly because of the extent of reporting on these issues in this report.

The work done during 2019 on Solvay’s purpose, and the work done on the new sustainability approach, Solvay ONE Planet, have confirmed the high materiality aspects already selected.

Correspondence between the materiality analysis and the risk analysis of the Group

As described in the “Risks Management" chapter of this Annual Integrated Report, the risk analysis of Solvay is a specific process and is used as input for the materiality analysis.

All the main risks of the Group relate to high materiality aspects, except “Security” and “Cyber risks”, which relate to moderate materiality aspects because the impact on daily operations is limited and is material only in the event of a malicious act.