Insights To Product Carbon Footprint By Infineon 

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Delve into Infineon’s strategic journey, its impact on the environment, and how they are setting new industry standards for carbon footprints. 

On July 9th, 2024, Infineon Technologies conducted an insightful online media briefing focused on product carbon footprints. The event featured key speakers Corinna Wolf, Infineon’s Head of Sustainability, and Martin Hachenburg, a subject matter expert, who shared their expertise and perspectives on this critical environmental topic. The Product Carbon Footprint (PCF) is a metric that quantifies the total greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with a product’s manufacturing process.

Infineon reports the PCF “from cradle to gate,” including emissions related to their manufacturing (scope 1 and 2 emissions) and emissions originating from their upstream supply chain (scope 3 emissions), such as those from manufacturing partners, transportation, raw materials, and supplies. Corinna Wolf stated, “The company aims for carbon neutrality by 2030, focusing primarily on reducing direct emissions and enhancing energy efficiency.” This commitment includes expanding its climate strategy to its supply chain and adopting Science-Based Targets that cover Scope 3 emissions. The products and solutions are designed to support a net-zero economy, bridging the gap between the physical and digital worlds.

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The company aims to achieve carbon neutrality by 2030, demonstrating a significant commitment to environmental sustainability. This goal is supported by implementing impactful products and solutions that reduce emissions. Infineon’s efforts include leveraging renewable energy sources, such as wind and solar power, and innovating within their manufacturing processes to minimise environmental impact. Through these actions, Infineon works towards its carbon neutrality target and promotes sustainable practices across the industry.

Transparency and Customer Support

Revealing its Product Carbon Footprint (PCF) enables customers to benefit from their CO2 emissions transparency efforts. This transparency spans from corporate actions down to individual product levels, allowing customers to gain deeper insights into their carbon footprint along their value chains. It helps create levers for fostering more effective strategies for customers’ own CO2 emissions reduction, ultimately supporting more sustainable practices and contributing to the overall reduction of carbon emissions. This transparency helps customers develop more effective CO₂ emissions reduction strategies, leveraging detailed data on emissions associated with product manufacturing.

Renewable Energy Goals

Martin Hachenburg mentioned the company has committed to achieving 100% renewable electricity by 2025, with 82% already completed today. The renewable electricity share has progressively increased from 37% in FY21 to 57% in FY22 and 82% in FY23, to reach 100% by FY25. This transition is being implemented globally, starting with Europe in FY21, the Americas in FY22, Malaysia in FY23, and the rest of Asia by FY25. Infineon has been part of the RE100 initiative since 2021, which brings together many of the world’s significant businesses committed to 100% renewable energy. This initiative underscores Infineon’s dedication to sustainability and reducing its environmental impact through renewable energy sources.

Environmental Impact and CO₂ Savings

The company’s efforts to reduce its environmental impact are quantified in its CO₂ burden and savings metrics. They aim to reduce their CO₂ burden significantly through various strategies, including using renewable energy, clean electrification, and energy-efficient technologies. The company’s products, used across automotive electronics, industrial drives, photovoltaics, and wind energy, contribute to substantial CO₂ savings, providing a net ecological benefit by reducing CO₂ emissions by over 113 million tons.

The total CO2 burden is divided into three scopes: Scope 1 (direct emissions), Scope 2 (indirect emissions from electricity and district heating), and Scope 3 (other indirect emissions). Scope 1 includes emissions from PFC, gas, diesel, fuel oil, petrol, firewood, and company-owned vehicles, amounting to 246,126 tons of CO2 equivalents. Scope 2 covers electricity and district heating emissions, contributing 254,335 tons of CO2 equivalents. Scope 3 encompasses emissions from fuel and energy supply, water supply, waste management, raw materials and supplies, capital goods, travel, transportation, and manufacturing service providers, totalling 2,882,063 tons of CO2 equivalents. Infineon ensures transparency and verification of this data, disclosing it through the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP).

Microelectronics and Decarbonization

The company creates a net ecological benefit through its products used in various applications such as automotive electronics, industrial drives, photovoltaics, and wind energy. These products can achieve CO2 savings of around 117 million tons of CO2 equivalents over their lifetime. Compared to the European electricity mix, this saving is approximately 12.5% of the annual net electricity produced by the European Union. The CO2 burden of Infineon’s activities, including manufacturing, transportation, own vehicles, and service providers, is around 3.4 million tons of CO2 equivalents. This results in a ratio of approximately 1:34, where every unit of CO2 emitted by Infineon saves 34 units. 

Microelectronics play a crucial role in electrifying and reducing CO2 emissions, acting as a critical lever for sustainable development. The company focuses on several areas to drive this transformation: 

  • Green Energy: The company supports the transition to sustainable energy by replacing fossil fuels in power generation with renewable, clean, and secure sources.
  • Digitalisation of the Conversion Chain: Optimizing the entire energy chain through connectivity and intelligent control enhances efficiency and reduces waste.
  • Clean Electrification: Electrifying consumption areas previously dominated by fossil fuels with renewable energies helps decrease carbon emissions.
  • Energy Efficiency: Promoting energy efficiency technologies, such as wide-bandgap semiconductors, results in higher power density and lower losses.

These initiatives support environmental sustainability and drive the company’s innovation and technological advancements in green energy and clean electrification. The company’s comprehensive climate strategy reflects its sustainability, transparency, and innovation commitment. It aims to achieve significant environmental benefits while supporting its customers in their journey towards reducing their carbon footprints.

Hachenburg further mentioned that the company actively collaborates with suppliers to address supply chain emissions, emphasising its commitment to environmental sustainability. They have joined the Science-Based Targets initiative, engaging with suppliers through discussions and training to support carbon footprint reduction. A significant challenge is exploring renewable energy sources for their supply chain, alongside enhancing data transparency for accurate emissions tracking and reporting. Despite the tripling of Scope one emissions, technologies like PFC abatement systems have been implemented to minimise these emissions. As a key decarbonisation initiative, the company aims to transition to 100% green electricity. Efforts include reducing material usage, recycling waste, and developing sustainable products. Early work focuses on setting industry standards for product carbon footprints, leveraging early mover advantages.

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