Embedding sustainability worldwide: A discussion with Lydia Chavarria

19 Apr 2022

Lydia Chavarria is the Environment Manager at Essentra Packaging, a division of Essentra PLC, specialising in the design and manufacture of cartons, labels, leaflets and printed foils for the global healthcare, personal care, and beauty industries. Based in Barcelona, Lydia’s role is to develop and implement divisional strategies and programmes that align with Essentra’s Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) commitments at a corporate level.

“Fundamentally my role is to ensure we have a very positive environmental culture at Essentra Packaging – continually improving our performance and creating consistency and accuracy across our sites in order that we can deliver a class leading sustainability performance today and into the future”.

“We must always challenge what we do today for the good of tomorrow,” states Lydia.

Lydia works closely with teams across the Essentra Packaging Division aligning priorities, disseminating best practices, and collaborating with innovation teams to ensure that the sustainability message is embedded from top to bottom of the organisation.

Essentra, as a group, has laid out clear ambitions for the business recognising that ESG issues remain crucial to its ability to effectively build for the future, as well as meeting the increasing expectations of stakeholders including employees, customers and investors.

The company announced new environmental KPIs and targets in 2020, committing to be carbon neutral (Scope 1 & 2 emissions) by 2040 and reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 25% by 2025, compared with its 2019 baseline.

“The great news is that we are on track as a business. At the end of 2021, our GHG emissions for the division were down 17% as a result of our focus on energy efficiency projects and procuring certified renewable energy. We also committed to have all our sites at zero waste to landfill by 2030 at the latest and 50% of our sites are already at that level, so real tangible progress is being made. Importantly, we have all our data verified by third party auditors; these aren’t just key performance metrics that we create and then move as we go along. We work with external parties to assure ourselves of progress and transparency on everything we’re doing, in order that we can be held accountable as a business.”

To further reinforce this point, Essentra signed up to the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) in 2016 to disclose its environmental emission data to a centrally managed public database free for inspection by any interested party.

“At Essentra Packaging, we are seeking to embed our sustainability ethos worldwide. We hold two Sustainability Weeks each year to increase awareness of our activities and projects, deliver training and workshops, and educate everyone on the role they can play in driving our environmental performance forward around the world. We are tracking our data on a monthly basis against key performance indicators and then meet with our Senior Management Team and Group Sustainability Committee, which includes Board Directors, on a quarterly basis too.

Our commitment is from the top to the bottom of the organisation and there is always more to do. Like most leading organisations, we’re on a journey of doing great things and endeavouring to bring standardisation and accuracy across all our 23 sites but the exciting part is that we are tracking success, and everyone is behind this movement, so I’m excited for the future.”

To find out more about Essentra Packaging and its sustainability commitments, contact us at [email protected]