Our pillars address specific stakeholder needs, based on the impact our operations may have on each of our stakeholders and vice versa. We are fully committed to operating in a way that creates both economic and social value.
Employees are our most valuable resource. We strive to provide the highest standard of internal well-being through continuous personal and professional development.
Ensuring a safe and healthy working environment for our employees is one of our biggest responsibilities. We comply with it, and even go beyond the provisions of the law. We constantly implement programs aimed at increasing safety in our processes, employee training for a correct performance in the workplace, as well as initiatives that encourage healthy living practices.
Employee training is fundamental for Alpek. Our training begins on every employee’s first day of work with induction course. In addition to specialized training, we offer our employees advice on how to handle retirement, through programs such as the Employee Assistance Program in the United States.
We are aware of our responsibility towards the community, particularly communities near our facilities. All Alpek sites constantly evaluate risks to neighboring communities and undertake actions to mitigate them.
We strive to ensure that our operations have a positive impact on the community through health programs, safety training measures, meetings with neighbors of the plants, support programs providing infrastructure, as well as direct support for the most vulnerable sectors.
We also implement programs for young students in our communities: more than 7,000 students benefited from our support and donations to 53 schools near our facilities, and 135 students completed their internships at our companies in 2016.
Furthermore, in an effort to increase local economic development, our companies use criteria to support local suppliers.
Our greatest commitment is to care for the environment as we understand its significance in terms of permanence over time and quality of life. Our operating capacity is closely linked to the preservation of our surroundings.
Our approach is to optimize the consumption of natural resources and raw materials, reduce emissions and waste, and enhance process efficiency. All our companies have their own policies that enable them to define the procedures to follow under any given scenario. These policies are aligned to Alpek’s environmental objectives.
The majority of the raw materials used in our processes come from oil, a non-renewable resource. We are, therefore, constantly striving to make the best possible use of them.
Lower energy consumption and the constant search for alternative renewable sources for procurement are priority issues. In 2014 we started our co-generation plant in Cosoleacaque, Veracruz to enhance our energy efficiency. We know it is impossible to maintain sustainable operations without committing to a responsible consumption of water, one of the most important and vulnerable natural resources. For this reason, we are continuously implementing strategies for a conscientious water management.
It is both our responsibility and a competitive advantage to maintain a healthy financial condition, based on achieving long-term value creation through profitable growth. A careful analysis of our investment projects, in search of new business opportunities, is the key to continuous portfolio optimization with a sustainable approach.
We also invest in the improvement of our processes, products and facilities, with actions such as the construction of our new power cogeneration plant in Cosoleacaque, Veracruz, which started operations in 2014. In addition, a second power cogeneration plant is being built in Altamira, Mexico.
We are able to make these and other actions, despite the challenging global economic environment that we have faced these past years. Our disciplined growth strategy allows us to continue investing even during down cycles and maximize the benefits of the eventual industry recovery.