Although the Responsible Care brand is well-known and respected as a concept, the actual knowledge about what the initiative is and what it offers could be further strengthened, notably within international bodies such as UN Environment. Obviously, the current state of communications about the program is insufficient in providing key stakeholders a practical understanding of the initiative, in particular what it requires companies to do and how the initiative drives continuous improvement and excellence throughout the global chemical industry in the key performance areas of process safety, occupational safety, environmental protection, security, community outreach, safe chemicals transport and product stewardship.
A Need To Communicating More About Responsible Care® & the Global Product Strategy (GPS) Contributions
As the 2020 SAICM deadline approaches, there is greater need for ICCA to communicate about the contributions of Responsible Care® and the Global Product Strategy (GPS) to SAICM’s goal of sound management of chemicals throughout their life cycle. While it appears there is support within SAICM and the United Nations Environment Program for maintaining SAICM’s multi-stakeholder, consensus-based approach, several international non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and some EU member states continue to raise the prospect of a binding international chemicals convention. It is very important that decision makers involved in the discussions about post-2020 are well educated about ICCA’s accomplishments to build chemicals management capacity around the world and that they support the continued inclusion of industry going forward.
Members of the Communications Leadership Group (CLG) participated in the March 20 – March 23rd meetings of the Chemicals Policy and Health Leadership Group (CP&H), the Responsible Care Leadership Group (RCLG) and the Strategic Planning Workshop that followed. The meeting and workshop outcomes will contribute to a comprehensive planning effort to enhance ICCA communications ahead of the SAICM 2020 deadline. This planning effort will confirm target audiences, develop communications goals, evaluate current ICCA collateral and identify needs for new messages or communications tools.
The CLG also agreed that internal audiences should be considered as part of the communications planning process. The CLG has committed to complete an audit of existing ICCA materials and messages related to sustainable development, chemicals management and Responsible Care®, and where needed, to develop more compelling and user friendly message materials.