“All companies can play a role. No matter how large or small, and regardless of their industry, all companies can contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals”, or SDGs, identified by UN Global Compact. It is with these words that the largest corporate sustainability activity in the world explicitly calls upon companies to commit and play a key role in achieving the sustainability goals needed for the survival of our planet. And it is on these objectives, which are outlined in the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, that the Pirelli sustainability plans are based. The sustainability plans complement and support the industrial plans of Pirelli, including the recent 2020-2022 Industrial Plan with Vision 2025.
The Pirelli sustainability plan with targets for 2022, 2025 and 2030 supports eleven of the UN’s seventeen 2030 sustainable development goals and is based on the global evolutionary scenarios for 2025-2030, with particular reference to technological and digital innovation (SDGs 4 and 9), an increasingly circular economy (SDGs 12 and 17), the growth of the world population and smart cities (SDGs 8 and 11), future mobility trends (SDGs 3 and 11), the potential scarcity of natural resources and the fight against climate change (SDGs 6, 7, 12, 13 and 15) and the growing need for cybersecurity to protect the entire value chain.
Following the guidelines dictated by the United Nations, the Pirelli sustainability strategy looks at new consumer needs and new forms of mobility with a sustainable approach throughout the entire product life cycle, from research into new materials to innovative processes, improving the environmental and safety performance of products, supporting circular economy and launching new products to promote of the safety of drivers. All this with a special focus on tyres for electric vehicles, whose penetration rate on the global market is expected to grow.
In the field of materials, Pirelli is constantly focusing on the research and development of innovative materials, with which to develop new product lines, increasingly derived from renewable sources and recycled materials, to make an increasing contribution to reducing the percentage of materials of fossil origin used in tyre production today.
The innovation in production processes will also contribute to further improving the aspects of environmental sustainability that are one of the cornerstones of the Pirelli strategy. The company aims at achieving Carbon Neutrality by 2030, also by using 100% renewable electricity at group level by 2025. The modular approach and design to value methods based on material savings, development and virtual testing will also contribute substantially to process innovation.
For Pirelli, the role of the people working in offices and factories is central and continual training is provided to support the digitisation process of the company and the culture of safety at work.
To support innovation in the circular economy, Pirelli is also working on the development of innovative processes which ensure the high level of quality expected in the use of raw-second material, i.e material recovered from end of life tyres such as powdered and retreaded rubber (devulcanised rubber reduced to a size suitable for reuse), in addition to the so-called Recovered Carbon Black (obtained from the pyrolysis of end of life tyres).
A contribution to a further increase in safety comes from Cyber-Technologies, that Pirelli aims to introduce extensively over the next few years and which include a system of sensors installed on the inside of the tread capable of collecting and transmitting information, such as tyre pressure, temperature and wear monitoring. To protect the safety of the entire work chain, on the other hand, Pirelli has launched a Cybersecurity programme that will make the operations of the group and the interactions with the value chain, from products to customers, even safer.
The responsible management of Pirelli crosses the entire value chain. This is also demonstrated by the company’s commitment to promoting, developing and implementing sustainable and responsible sourcing along the entire supply chain, from natural rubber (the key material for tyre production) to all the suppliers of the group. In the case of natural rubber, for example, sustainable management of the whole supply chain is essential to preserve forests and biodiversity and to enable the sustainable development of local communities and economies.
From natural rubber to the finished product, the Pirelli commitment is tangible and daily in a logic of sustainability that goes beyond the company’s boundaries to embrace those of the planet.