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Shell’s approach to product stewardship
Daily life is filled with products that might originate from our businesses – the clothes you wear, the car you drive, the phone you use. We take care to help make sure these products are safe, from production through to disposal.
Producers, suppliers and customers are jointly responsible for making sure products are safe for people and the environment – a process known as product stewardship.
Origins in Shell
At Shell, we manufacture chemicals used to make everyday items, from clothes to carpets and chairs. Our business also includes refining oil to make fuel that heats or cools your home, along with fuels and lubricants for your car.
Our approach to managing the products we make, sell, transport and store is founded on the Shell Business Principles and our Commitment and Policy on Health, Safety, Security, Environment (HSSE) & Social Performance.
We evaluate the health, safety and environmental impact of our products to help decide how to manage risk – this includes working with suppliers to understand the hazards of possible additives, assessing proposed changes in products, and reviewing the implications of entering new markets. We monitor developments to stay up to date with the science involved and support research when appropriate.
|What do we do?|
|• Check the safety of all our products and assess any potential harmful effects|
|• Consider the type of market we want to sell into and which applications or uses may be unsuitable.|
|• Apply product stewardship when we consider new manufacturing technology, start up a new business, bring a new product to market or develop new supply chains.|
Assess and comply
We have set up a network of expert teams around the world. These consist of:
- product stewards assigned to support our businesses;
- regulatory experts who monitor regulatory developments around the world and ensure compliance with regulations;
- and experts who manage the information technology (IT) tools and generate hazard communication materials.
Product stewards work closely with our experts in health, safety and the environment. Together, they carry out scientific assessments of the impact of chemicals and products throughout their lifecycle, from design to production to distribution and disposal.
They also work with others from our manufacturing, supply and distribution businesses, as well as outside companies, for example through trade associations.
Our regulatory experts collect and analyse regulatory information. They ensure that Shell’s operations and control of chemicals comply with legislative requirements around the world. Regulatory experts collaborate closely with product stewards.
Our product stewards, together with other subject matter experts, look for options to make our products more sustainable. For example, they identify potentially hazardous materials and possible replacements.
We store information on a central database to make it easily accessible. This includes hazard communication materials such as safety data sheets, which include details on product hazards and local regulatory requirements.