Responsible Care® is a voluntary commitment by the global chemical industry to drive continuous improvement and achieve excellence in environmental, health and safety and security performance.

A Global Vision for Responsible Care®

First launched in Canada in 1985, Responsible Care is today practiced in more than 60 countries around the globe. Responsible Care empowers companies to continue to strive for innovative ways to contribute to the vision of the World Summit on Sustainable Development that, by the year 2020, “All chemicals will be produced and used in ways that minimize risks for human health and the environment.”


Responsible Care is an essential part of ICCA’s contribution to the Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management (SAICM). Through Responsible Care, global chemical manufacturers commit to pursue an ethic of safe chemicals management and performance excellence worldwide. Our commitment helps to enhance public confidence and trust in the industry’s dedication to safely manage chemicals throughout their lifecycle while ensuring that chemistry can continue to contribute to a healthier environment, improved living standards and a better quality of life for all.


Spreading the Ethic of Responsible Care

Through Responsible Care capacity building activities, companies work closely with their national chemicals associations, business partners and ICCA to actively strengthen and spread the ethic of Responsible Care worldwide. In addition, we have secured signatures from hundreds of chemical companies to the revised Global Charter as a way to strengthen the global industry’s commitment to sound chemicals management.

Reporting and Strengthening Our Performance

All signatories to the Responsible Care Global Charter make a commitment to continuously strengthen their performance and update industry on their progress. Companies collect and report data for a core set of environmental, health and safety (EHS) performance measures. ICCA is proud that, for some measures, today, there are more than double the number of reporting associations than we had a decade ago.

  • Spreading The Ethic OfRESPONSIBLE CARE

    ICCA continues to make progress working with national associations and their companies to expand Responsible Care® to new geographies around the globe.

Progress On Our Quest For Performance Excellence

ICCA works with companies and associations across the globe to spread and strengthen the Responsible Care ethic.

Today, more than two-thirds of associations and their members are implementing the product stewardship principles embodied by Responsible Care and the Global Product Strategy (GPS).

Our 20 Milestones to 2020 Infographic features some of the highlights along our journey to expand Responsible Care, while the 2015 Responsible Care Progress Report offers a more detailed look at the progress we’ve made since our 2012 update report.

We welcomed China, the world’s largest chemical manufacturer, to the Responsible Care family in 2014. Collaborative work between industry, government, and local authorities is now underway to demonstrate best industry practice in safe chemicals management in this important manufacturing country.
We continue to make progress toward expanding Responsible Care in Africa by hosting capacity building workshops in Ghana, Kenya and Tanzania. We plan to introduce Responsible Care to three new countries in Africa in the coming years.
We have begun to work with chemical manufacturers in India to revitalize Responsible Care in the region. The Indian chemical industry is expected to reach US $200 billion by 2020, according to the Indian Chamber of Commerce.
We provided support for three start-up associations in Croatia, Egypt and Vietnam looking to develop their Responsible Care program. As of early 2016, both Vietnam and Egypt have joined Responsible Care.
We expanded the reach of Responsible Care to Myanmar and Sri Lanka in 2012.

We’re Unifying to Improve Global Health, Safety and Sustainability

The commitment to excellence and continuous improvement under the Responsible Care Global Charter can’t be effective unless it’s embraced broadly by the industry. CEOs from China and nearly 100 of the largest chemical companies in the world have signed the Global Charter as a sign of our industry’s unified commitment to safe chemicals management.

global charter signatories to date
of the world’s largest chemical companies
  • Reporting and Strengthening OUR PERFORMANCE

    As the Responsible Care network continues to expand to new regions, countries and companies, ICCA implements an increasingly rigorous system of checklists, performance indicators and verification procedures to ensure we are tracking our progress.

Following Through On Our Commitment To Sustainability

Global chemical manufacturers are actively working together to track and improve our performance while striving for transparency with stakeholders. To that end, ICCA provides the most complete dataset available for our industry with a commitment to continuously improve the way we measure, report and engage in dialogue about our performance.
To continue to step up our game, we are focused on building a comprehensive assessment of industry’s EHS performance based on quantitative performance indicators. Under Responsible Care, we track and measure performance metrics like energy and water consumption, CO2 emissions and distribution and process safety incidents.
The number of global Responsible Care members and pool of performance data continue to grow. For some parameters, we now have more than double the number of reporting associations than a decade ago, and we have already begun to see how the newly incorporated data has helped to drive positive performance trends over the past few years.
reduction in lost-time injury rate since 2006
reduction in transportation incidents since 2006
reduction in GHG emissions since 2006


Responsible Care encourages collaborative work between the domestic and international industry, government, and local authorities to help demonstrate best practices in safe chemicals management around the globe. This involves deploying Responsible Care experts to support safer and more sustainable chemical plants and supply chains, which can help contribute to safer workplaces, safer communities and sustainable growth.

Capacity Building Partners

Effective capacity building requires that we pool knowledge and expertise from multiple perspectives — from downstream users of chemicals, national government representatives, local authorities and regulators, and academia.

To date, ICCA and our partners have provided capacity building support for 172 projects in 46 countries, totaling more than US $1.8 million.

The capacity building partnership between ICCA and UNEP continues to be critical to our work to implement sound chemicals management practices, particularly in Africa.

In 2015, our focus was on helping Ghana, Kenya and Tanzania build capacity. We plan to introduce Responsible Care to three new countries in Africa in the coming years.


ICCA and the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) share a common vision: the eradication of chemical weapons worldwide. To that end, ICCA members and the 190 OPCW Member States continue to work together to implement the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), the first multilateral treaty to ban an entire category of weapons of mass destruction, including the development, production, stockpiling and use of chemical weapons.

As ICCA stated in our position paper for the Third Review Conference of the States Parties of the Chemical Weapons Convention, the global chemical industry is fully committed to help implement the Convention at national, regional and international levels so that chemical weapons can be eradicated worldwide. To demonstrate our commitment, ICCA made support of the CWC a condition of membership into Responsible Care. We also have hosted several verification visits from OPCW, and we proudly serve as a resource for the global chemical industry by providing peer-to-peer assistance.

Responsible Care Member Associations

Members of the ICCA Responsible Care Leadership Group include representatives from national associations, chemical manufacturing companies and logistics service providers around the globe that are committed to Responsible Care.

As of 2016, we have grown the Responsible Care family to more than 60 participating economies around the globe. By continuing to strengthen industry partnerships with governments and between nations, ICCA members believe we can bring the values of Responsible Care to the countries that need it most.

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