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A new plant in Singapore: From the beginning, the focus here has been on "Safety at Evonik."
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A dense and dizzying array of pipes runs through Singapore’s Jurong Island. Located just off the coast of the bustling city-state, this small piece of land is the heart of Singapore’s chemical industry. Around 100 international chemical companies have set up shop in the island’s chemical park, which is considered one of the most modern facilities in the world. In the second half of 2014, a new Evonik plant is set to go into operation here. It will produce methionine, an essential amino acid used in animal feed.
It’s the largest chemical investment project in the Group’s history, and it’s keeping many Evonik employees very busy. That’s because in addition to coordinating, planning, and implementing the project, the future workforce must be trained to operate the facility. The focus here is on safety—as it is everywhere at Evonik.
The new employees at the production plant are natives of ten different countries. A large portion of the workforce had already been hired last year. Since then, these individuals have been completing an intensive training program. In addition, plant-operation managers are being trained at the existing methionine production facilities in Mobile, Antwerp, and Wesseling. The new employees need to be completely familiar with the facility and the company before the plant is put into operation for the first time. "That’s especially true when it comes to our philosophy of occupational safety as well as Evonik’s overall ‘culture of safety,’" says Dr. Paul Lambert, who is responsible for the environment, health, and safety in Evonik’s Health & Nutrition Business Unit.
"The basis of these efforts is our Group-wide safety model ‘Safety at Evonik.’" Numerous employees all around the world were involved in developing the new safety model. This new set of standards is based on the findings of all the Environment, Safety, Health, and Quality (ESHQ) coordinators and the company’s many safety experts. The experience of the employees was also taken into consideration. This information was collected at workshops and in a wide-ranging employee survey. The result of this process is a safety model that establishes concrete practical guidelines that are binding on all employees, regardless of hierarchy, Business Unit, region, and location.
"Safety has always had top priority at the company," says Dr. Rainer Kohlen, Head of Occupational and Plant Safety in the Corporate Environment & Responsibility Unit at Evonik. "This is reflected in the very low accident rate that we have had for years. So our safety systems are very good." Yet despite these factors, Kohlen and his team asked how safety at Evonik could be improved even more.
Read the full story in our Sustainability Report 2013.
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