Responsible Care®

Responsible Care® - A Total Commitment

About Responsible Care®

Responsible Care® is the chemistry industry's commitment to sustainability, the betterment of society, the environment, and the economy.

Responsible Care® is the certification program of the Chemistry Industry Association of Canada (CIAC), of which Dow Canada is a founding member and partner.

Member-companies strive to "do the right thing and be seen to do the right thing." We innovate for safer and greener products and processes, and to continuously improve their environmental, health and safety performance.

Accountability to Our Community

How Responsible Care® Works

There are four components of Responsible Care®. These are:

  • Ethics and Principles for Sustainability
  • Responsible Care® Codes
  • Verification
  • Advisory Panel

1. Ethics and Principles for Sustainability
The Ethics and Principles for Sustainability are the bedrock of Responsible Care®. The most senior executive of each Chemistry Industry Association of Canada member-company must renew his or her corporate commitment to these principles annually.

2. Responsible Care® Codes
The Responsible Care® Codes outline what a company must do to live up to the Ethic and Principles for Sustainability. CIAC members must have a robust management system that drives continuous improvement towards meeting the Codes.

There are three Responsible Care® Codes that influence the decisions that CIAC member-companies make every day. These are:

  • The Operations Code outlines how Responsible Care® companies should manage their facilities and equipment to ensure that they're operated in a safe and responsible way. Companies must work to continuously improve the environmental performance of their facilities and processes, and reduce their resource consumption.
  • The Stewardship Code requires companies to regularly review the value, impact and safety of the products that they make, and the services and technologies that they use. They must also work with their business partners – suppliers, distributors and customers – to ensure the stewardship and security of their products over their entire life cycle.
  • The Accountability Code requires companies to communicate the risks and benefits of their operations to those who live beside their plants, or in communities along transportation corridors, as well as to other stakeholders, and to work to address any concerns that they may have.

3. Verification
The performance of CIAC members must be independently audited. A verification team – made up of public advocates, industry experts and local community representatives – visits CIAC companies every three years to ensure that the Responsible Care® ethic and management systems are in place.

The verification team looks for answers to three key questions:

  • Is the company meeting the expectations outlined in the Responsible Care® Codes?
  • Is an effective management system in place that supports Responsible Care, and drives continuous improvement, in all areas?
  • Is the company's commitment to the Responsible Care® Ethic and Principles for Sustainability tangible, and does it guide the company's judgment, decisions and actions, internally and externally?

CIAC publishes data on its members' emissions and wastes, employee injuries and illnesses, and process-related and transportation incidents, to encourage continuous improvement.

Dow Canada was successfully verified in 2016. To learn more about Responsible Care and to view our most recent report please click here.

4. Community Advisory Panels
Community Advisory Panels are in place across Canada for Dow's manufacturing sites. Community Advisory Panels are made up of activists, advocates and academics, as well as residential and industrial neighbours. Their mandate is to advise CIAC members on how to understand and exceed the public's expectations through Responsible Care®.