Protecting nature

Fresenius is committed to protecting nature as the basis of life and using its resources responsibly. We comply with legal requirements and aim to improve the safety of our plants and our performance in the areas of environmental protection, product responsibility, and logistics.

The four Fresenius business segments manage environmental matters differently to meet their individual business requirements. Therefore, we present the corresponding environmental management approaches separately for each business segment.

Fresenius Medical Care, Fresenius Kabi, and Fresenius Vamed use the ISO 14001 standard as the basis for their environmental management and have locations certified according to this standard. Furthermore, they have certified locations according to the energy management standard ISO 50001.

Energy consumption, water consumption, and greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) data are collected in all business segments. To comply with the interests of external stakeholders, we have been reporting key figures 1 since 2017. External stakeholders, such as investors and environmental associations, frequently inquire about information on waste and effluents for the Group. Therefore, we also include information on these topics.

Water is an important resource for all of the four Fresenius business segments. Fresenius operates in highly regulated markets with regard to hygiene, sterility, and product quality. Water used in our health care facilities and production sites has to meet regulatory requirements. To safeguard our patients’ and employees’ health, we have to ensure that adequate management and control systems are in place.

Water management and water treatment is coordinated and controlled locally within the Fresenius Group. The business segments have to ensure compliance with all applicable laws and regulations. In fiscal year 2018, Fresenius 1 consumed a total of approximately 56 million m³ of water. The same applies to wastewater: the business segments are expected to treat wastewater from production or health care facilities in compliance with local laws and regulations and implement relevant management provisions, if necessary.

Fresenius Group 1 water consumption
m3 in millions   2018   2017   2016
Fresenius Medical Care   41.8   n. a.   n. a.
Fresenius Kabi   9.7   9.8   9.8
Fresenius Helios   3.7   3.2   3.0
Fresenius Vamed   0.7   0.3   0.3
Total   55.9   n. a.   n. a.

Production processes and patient treatments in hospitals or other health care facilities require a high amount of energy. The structural condition of health care facilities also influences energy consumption. Fresenius continuously invests in environmental protection through structural measures, such as new construction projects and modernizations in line with the latest standards of efficient heat insulation and applicable energy savings regulations. In fiscal year 2018, Fresenius 1 consumed a total of approximately 5.3 million MWh of energy. As with water consumption, our patients’ well-being and product safety are the focus of energy management. Safe and uninterruptible power supply is therefore a top priority. Measures for saving energy are always considered with the utmost care. We continually optimize our energy procurement and generate energy ourselves at numerous locations. This makes us independent and shall secure the energy supply in the long term.

Fresenius Group 1 energy consumption
MWh in millions   2018   2017   2016
Fresenius Medical Care   2.35   n. a.   n. a.
Fresenius Kabi   1.65   1.57   1.49
Fresenius Helios   1.14   0.95   0.96
Fresenius Vamed   0.16   0.05   0.05
Total   5.30   n. a.   n. a.
  • 1KDOQI guidelines (Kidney Disease Outcomes Quality Initiative)

In fiscal year 2018, Fresenius 1 caused a total of 1,523 thousand t CO2 equivalents.

Greenhouse gas emissions Fresenius Group 1, Scope 1 and 2
tCO2 equivalents in thousands   2018   2017
Fresenius Medical Care Scope 1   218   n. a.
  Scope 2   548   n. a.
Fresenius Kabi Scope 1   169   174
  Scope 2   255   248
Fresenius Helios Scope 1   114   103
  Scope 2   182   152
Fresenius Vamed Scope 1   18   3
  Scope 2   19   6
Total Scope 1   519   n. a.
  Scope 2   1,004   n. a.

In the health care industry, waste is a strictly regulated factor. All Fresenius locations have to adhere to all applicable laws and regulations and also to global or local standard operating procedures and environmental management provisions. There are important interfaces between professional, safe disposal and the requirements for hygiene and sterility in production processes and hospital treatments. This ranges from the selection of suitable disposal containers, cleaning, and sterilization procedures to the occupational safety of our employees when disposing of hazardous – e.g. infectious – waste.

Where necessary, business segments lay down specific rules and requirements in internal guidelines, training, and controls for our employees, for example in the area of hygiene in our acute care clinics­.

For more information about environmental management see the Non-financial Report.