Sustainability Goals and Governance

In Fiscal Year 2019, Schnitzer established its first enterprise-wide sustainability goals. In setting these goals, we had a few guidelines in mind. First, we wanted goals that were holistic — not focused solely on environmental performance. As a result, we’re tracking progress in the areas of People, Planet, and Profit. We also wanted goals to be measurable, yet attainable over several years.

Finally, we wanted the goals to be relevant — aligned with the issues that matter to our stakeholders. The development of our goals was guided by our Sustainability Materiality Assessment. We aim to meet or beat our People and Planet goals by the end of Fiscal Year 2025, and our Profit goal by the end of Fiscal Year 2021. These goals are aligned with Schnitzer’s long-term business success.



Achieve a


total case incident rate by
end of Fiscal Year 2025


Donate at least


hours of paid volunteer time off (VTO) for
employees by the end of Fiscal Year 2025


Air Emissions

Reduce absolute GHG emissions from
Auto and Metals Recycling (AMR) operations


by the end of
Fiscal Year 2025


Achieve and maintain at least


carbon-free electricity
use by the end of
Fiscal Year 2025



Achieve a profitability
improvement target of


using sustainability-
based initiatives by the
end of Fiscal Year 2021

Sustainability Principles

Improving our sustainability performance requires important contributions from every Schnitzer employee. We’re making our core value of Sustainability tangible and actionable for our workforce with a new set of Sustainability Principles. These principles connect with the holistic, triple-bottom-line concept of sustainability, which includes People, Planet, and Profit. Each Principle has an action statement that helps employees put sustainability into action through their daily work.

Eliminating Waste

We create sustainable value through safety improvement and operational efficiency.

Waste can include wasted time and productivity, as well as wasted materials sent to landfills. We put the Eliminate Waste principle into action when we:

  • Improve safety performance

  • Increase operational efficiency

  • Decrease waste by-products; send less material to landfills

  • Participate in office or facility recycling efforts

Continuous Improvement

We continuously explore and pursue practices that promote sustainable operations.

The journey to becoming a more sustainable company has no endpoint. We put the Continuous Improvement principle into action when we:

  • Identify new opportunities to reduce air emissions

  • Identify new opportunities for storm water reuse or recovery, including process water recycling

  • Identify opportunities to improve scrap quality to increase market access and market share

  • Develop new processes and controls to improve the safety of our work environment

Technology & Innovation

We embrace the sustainable benefits of technology and innovation.

Sustainable technology and innovation protect our environment and the communities where we work and live. We put the Technology & Innovation principle into action when we:

  • Acquire new technologies such as advanced metals recovery technology systems

  • Construct shredder enclosures at metals yards

  • Install thermal oxidizers to significantly reduce GHG emissions

  • Implement storm water treatment facility upgrades or installations

Working with Purpose

We are committed to positively impacting our communities and supporting a diverse and inclusive workplace.

Creating a purposeful work environment benefits not only our employees, but also customers, investors, and communities. We put the Working With Purpose Principle into action when we:

  • Support a work culture where everyone is treated with respect, fairness, and has an equal opportunity to reach their full career potential

  • Positively impact our communities through volunteerism and charitable giving

Sustainability governance

Sustainability is integrated into Schnitzer’s corporate governance and organizational structures, allowing us to embrace change and innovation, and measure our progress across a range of metrics.

Sustainability governance
at Schnitzer

Our Chief Sustainability Officer (CSO) reports directly to the CEO and provides updates to our Board of Directors, which oversees our sustainability strategy and execution. The CSO analyzes, builds consensus for, and manages sustainability-related initiatives, projects, and goals that are supported by executive-level leadership and are visible throughout the organization.

Schnitzer also has a Sustainability Leadership Group that collaborates on the development and deployment of sustainable and socially responsible business practices. This cross-functional team engages leadership across business units, geographic regions, and job functions. The group seeks to mobilize our workforce to, for example, apply environmental considerations to equipment procurement decisions and planned operational changes, support our culture of ethical behavior, and lead other stakeholder engagement events such as Earth Day activities.