Environment, Safety and Health

Implementation of Environmental Protection

Climate Change

Climate change is a major topic of discussion in the United Nations and among governments, societies, and corporate bodies worldwide. This is also the case for VIS. The VIS Corporate Social Responsibility Promotion Committee has incorporated climate change issues into project implementation and promotion. Since 2016, VIS has conducted carbon and water footprint inventories for company products in recent years as the basis for future GHG emissions reduction measures. VIS introduced environmental accounting and the ISO 50001 Energy Management System in 2017 to strengthen the Company's environmental management tools. In 2018, VIS introduced the material flow cost analysis method and ISO 14064- 1 Scope 3 inventory, which have both passed SGS third-party verification. In addition to introducing different analysis projects, VIS has also utilized the analysis results to identify the risks and opportunities brought by global climate change in the three aspects of risk matrix: laws and regulations, weather-related disasters, and influences of other behaviors; moreover, VIS conduct corresponding action plans and measure the effectiveness. Since 2014, VIS has voluntarily participated in the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) to disclose climate change-related information on a yearly basis which includes information on GHG emissions and reductions. In addition, we conduct inspections and make improvements on risks and opportunities relating to legal regulations, natural disasters, finance, and business operations. External bodies are able to access relevant information on the CDP website.

Climate Risk Impact Description Financial Impact Climate Opportunity Measure
Impact on Company Image Cannot satisfy stakeholder expectations resulting in negative impact on company reputation or image Stakeholders willingness to invest lowers, resulting in decreased revenue Increase stakeholders' willingness of long-term investment, stabilize shareholder structure
  • Satisfy stakeholders' demand of energy-saving products, engage in green design of products
  • Targeting manufacturing process, enhance green management, obtaining ISO 50001 Energy Management System, ISO 14001 Environmental Management, and ISO 14064-1 GHG Inventory certifications
Policy/Regulatory Requirements Greenhouse Gas Reduction and Management Act Fines and fees result in increased operation cost Improve energy efficiency to lower operation cost
  • Proactively implement GHG emissions management measures. Achieving 14.7% GHG emissions reduction per unit area of wafer in 2019
Renewable Energy Development Act Install renewable energy power generation facilities resulting in increased operation cost Develop renewable energy in advance to facilitate corporate energy diversification
  • Introduce renewable energy, plan installation of renewable energy facilities, such as solar PV system, and purchase RECs
Global Fuel Price Increase Fluctuation of fuel price affects production and operation costs Fuel price increases resulting in increased production and operation costs Develop renewable energy in advance to facilitate corporate energy diversification
  • Introduce renewable energy, plan installation of renewable energy facilities, such as solar PV system, and purchase RECs
Stakeholders' Increasing Level of Concern for Low-Carbon Products and Services Cannot satisfy stakeholders' needs for low-carbon products and services, resulting in lowered purchase intention Development cost for low-carbon products and services increase Offer low-carbon products and services to earn stakeholders' trust
  • Utilize specific wafer manufacturing technology to develop low-carbon design products; enhance product efficiency to respond to market demands
Cost of Innovative Technology Production Cannot develop innovative technology and consequently eliminated by the market Cost of innovative technology production increase Proactively develop innovative technology in response to industrial pulses and market growth demands
  • Continue to increase investment in R&D of products and manufacturing processes; develop power management related BCD and UHV technology
Supply Chain Breakage Cannot deliver on time or keep the promise of stable supply to customers Compensate customers' losses, resulting in increased operation cost Proactively enhance stability of supply chain
  • Implement supplier audit mechanism, enhance supplier quality and environmental management capacity
  • Require suppliers to submit post-disaster impact and recovery plan to lower the risk of supply chain breakage
Change in Consumer Behavior Consumers aware of effects of climate change, and refuse to purchase products and services that are not energy-saving or low-carbon Consumers' willingness to buy lowers, resulting in decreased revenue Offer low-carbon products and services to earn stakeholders' trust
  • Utilize specific wafer manufacturing technology to develop low-carbon design products; enhance product efficiency to respond to market demands
Intensified Extreme Weather Events Typhoons, floods, and draughts lead to reduced capacity or interrupted production Capacity disruption results in decreased revenue Enhance production line's resilience of natural disasters
  • Formulate crisis management procedure, establish disaster prevention and response system, including employee flood drill, typhoon prevention measures, establishment of river level monitoring system, and installation of flood prevention gate

Since 2005, VIS has utilized third-party verification for annual greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and submitted annual reports of GHG emission to the Taiwan Semiconductor Industry Association (TSIA) and EPA, Executive Yuan. VIS conducts its GHG inventories by following ISO/CNS 14064-1 standards, the Executive Yuan Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) Greenhouse Gas Validation Guidelines, "Greenhouse Gas Emission Inventory Registration Guidelines," and the WBCSD/WRI GHG Protocol, with 100% control to define organizational boundaries (Operational Control Act). The inventory data are 3rd party verified by SGS.

VIS's latest GHG emissions are 711.1 thousand tons CO2e in 2017, 787.6 thousand tons CO2e in 2018, and 722.6 thousand tons CO2e in 2019. The increase in emissions is due to the continuous growth of production. As for the GHG reduction, VIS has installed local scrubbers for treating process gases. The F-gas reduction in the last three years from 2017~2019 are 285.3 thousand tons CO2e, 327.6 thousand tons CO2e, and 258.0 thousand tons CO2e, respectively. VIS' GHG reduction goal is to reduce GHG emissions per unit area of wafer to 20% lower than the 2015 level by 2020; currently, VIS has reduced GHG emissions by 14.7%.

Energy Management

Emphasizing risk management, green production, and energy shock, VIS involves all employees in the operation of energy management system to achieve the goals of meeting regulatory requirements, answering customers' demands, and enhancing power usage effectiveness (PUE). To achieve these goals, VIS is committed to continue implementing and improving the following:

Air Pollution Control

VIS adopts classification at source, and best feasible technology in multiple phases to implement air pollution control. Then VIS processes the pollutant before effectively treating it using high-performance control equipment. The content of pollutant emitted into the atmosphere is less than (or conforms to) the amount specified in government regulations. Based on VIS's annual test results, the concentration and emission of air pollutants were substantially lower than the permitted amount allowed by the EPA of Executive Yuan. Proper backup systems, including emergency power, have been setup to ensure normal operation in the event of equipment failure, thereby reduce the risk of abnormal discharge of pollutants. Equipment for processing VOCs uses clean, natural gas as fuel, but it is also equipped with other fuel supply systems. If problems arise with the supply of natural gas, backup fuel can be used instead to ensure the smooth operation of our pollution prevention facilities. According to the statistics of air pollution emissions, all VIS plants have VOCs systems that are equipped with rotor processing equipment. In 2019, Fab 1 added a new VOCs system that achieved removal rate better than the legal requirement (>90%), and the average removal efficiency of VOCs in plant areas was 93.43%, which was better than the 92% established by the environmental impact assessment best available control technology.

VIS has set the goal for 2020 to reduce VOCs emissions per unit area of wafer by 10% compared to the 2015 level. By 2019, VOCs emission per unit area of wafer has been reduced by 6.2% lower than the 2015 level.

Water Resource Management and Water Pollution Prevention

VIS maximizes the reuse of water discharged from its manufacturing processes. Based on the characteristics of the discharged water, VIS has established over 10 types of water discharge pipes according to water quality and user demands. Recycling systems are used to reduce wastewater discharge and ease the burden on the environment, as well as prevent the use of tap water as refills, thereby conserve water resources.

VIS's water pollution prevention strategy is focused on reducing the generation of pollutants, then recycling and treating water pollutants by using effective equipment to make sure that the quality of discharged water is better than or equal to the standards set by the government. VIS also continued to take measures in reducing the concentration of Tetramethylammonium hydroxide (TMAH) and ammonia nitrogen (NH3-N) in water discharges in order to mitigate the harmful effects of water discharge.

VIS has set the goal of reducing water conservation per unit area of wafer to 13% lower than the level of 2015 by 2020. By 2019, VIS has reduced water consumption per unit area of wafer to 18.5% lower than the 2015 level.

The amount of tap water consumed by VIS was 4.99 million metric tons and 4.98 million metric tons in 2018 and 2019 respectively. The aforementioned data were verified in SGS Product Water Footprint Verification commissioned to SGS once every two years by VIS, which was completed by August 2020.

Waste Management and Resources Recycle

Waste management at VIS has shifted from the traditional approach of cleaning and disposing of wastes to an integration of resource management. VIS has designated professional technician for waste disposal management, and adhered to the spirit of ISO 14001 to formulate detailed management regulations. In addition, VIS requires its employees to comply with requirements mandated for the classification, collection, storage, and clearance of wastes. To facilitate sustainable utilization of resources, the primary principle of waste management is to reduce the use of processed chemicals, which in turn lowers waste output. Furthermore, we prioritize in the recycle and reuse of waste materials. We view other treatment methods such as incineration and burial of wastes as a last resort.

A waste recycle rate greater than 90% is required for all VIS plants. Monthly plant recycle rate reports are submitted to supervisors and environmental safety committee monitors to track our progress. In the future, we will continue to decrease our use of raw materials, seek qualified recycling organizations, and help these organizations develop advanced waste recycling technologies to achieve sustainable resource utilization, energy conservation, and carbon reduction. With VIS's continued efforts, recycle rates have increased to over 90% over the past five years.

Total waste production in 2018 was 6,933 metric tons, and 6,492 metric tons in 2019; the aforementioned data were verified in the biennial SGS Product Carbon Footprint Verification, which was completed by August 2020.