Neo’s inaugural Sustainability Report provided an opportunity to reflect on the past and imagine the future. Over the past few years alone, we have:
• Managed consistent improvement in Occupational Health & Safety (OHS), including the tracking and management of near misses and the limiting of lost time injuries. For example, Neo’s Total Reportable Incident Rate (TRIR) compares very favorably to U.S. manufacturing industry data for our industry.
• Embraced the strengths of a diverse workforce, with a preference to hire management from local communities. In fact, 90% of plant managers we hire are from local communities (national jurisdiction) in which we operate.
• Re-weighted the importance of Health, Environment, Safety and Sustainability (HESS) initiatives in our annual strategic planning, with an objective tied to the improved ESG outcomes and reporting;
• Implemented and prioritized employee continual training and learning initiatives including harassment prevention, Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) compliance, and ethical conduct policies;
• Improved product labeling and customer communications regarding product safety, and;
• Focused on ethically sourced/conflict free tantalum and niobium feedstock and qualifying for the Responsible Minerals Initiative (RMI), with an eye toward developing industry standards for rare earth material sourcing
Neo’s Corporate Vision pictures a world that has substantially decarbonized major industrial and mobility sectors. Neo’s innovative research and development history has been integral to unlocking many new technologies that improve energy efficiency, reducing the intensity of use of fossil fuels and carbon intensive workstreams, and helping protect air and water quality. Driving new technologies forward and accelerating the adoption of climate-friendly products, is imperative for us. The “How” we manufacture these products and manage our business is equally important to the “What” our products do. Neo seeks to display leadership in the pursuit of responsible supply chains and excellence in material science. Through disciplined practices, policies and procedures, we can help set the new standard for the critical materials industry.
To aid this effort, it is critical to have a strong foundation through ESG Reporting. Early in our journey, ESG is already touching every aspect of our business, and we are implementing continuous improvement processes. We anticipate publicly reporting every year for our stakeholders
For our inaugural report, our primary emphasis is the calendar year 2021 reporting. The recent several years will also provide context for certain results that might be skewed by the global pandemic during 2020 and 2021. For this first edition, report boundaries include entities in which Neo has had a controlling majority interest prior to 2021. Environmental data is emphasized for our five largest plants.
During 2021, Neo’s Working Group on Sustainability convened 23 times from March through December. In line with Neo’s robust corporate governance practices, the Working Group on Sustainability was supported by an administrative process that developed agendas, meeting minutes, and progress tracking with the use of project management frameworks. Between official meetings, Panel members led individual workstreams in collaboration with colleagues across the geographies and functions throughout Neo’s large bench of talent. The updates of these workstreams were brought to the Panel for information consolidation, effort coordination, duplication prevention, resource allocation, and progress tracking.